Priscilla (or Prisca) and Aquila:

Attribute of Priscilla can teach us about the harmony and togetherness of marriage. Priscilla and Aquila are always mentioned together and went everywhere together. They did not compete against each other they were a couple and worked together as one flesh. They both worked together for the kingdom of the LORD and to bring Him the glory.

Acts 18:1-26; Romans 16:3-4; 1 Corinthians 16:19-20; 2 Timothy 4:19

Priscilla is always mentioned with her husband Aquila. It is nice to see a pair of workers for Christ. Paul tells us there were Jews. Aquila born in Pontus and later came from Italy with his wife Pricilla. This was because Claudius had commanded all Jews to depart from Rome.

Claudius was the Roman Emperor who issued an edict around 40A.D. that commanded all the Jews to leave the city of Rome. There were a large number of Jews in Rome. (Doig, 1990). The reason for this was stated by a Roman historian Suetonius records such an edict: “Since the Jews constantly made disturbances at the instigation of Chrestus, he [Claudius] expelled them from Rome.” (Claudius 25:4) and can be dated to 41 CE. (Luedemann, 1984). Claudius did not make a distinction between the Jews who believed in Jesus Christ and the Jews who did not believe in Jesus Christ. They were all ordered out of Rome.

Acts 18:2 tells us that it was at this time Aquila and his wife Priscilla were forced to leave Rome. The church in Rome lost much of their leadership and many of their teachers. The converted non-Jews took over the crafts and the church in Rome and they did things the way the Gentile Christians did thing. The Book of Romans contains the letters written by Paul who tried to discuss and solve the conflict of the church after the death of Claudius.
Paul says that because they were of the same craft or trade, he stayed with Priscilla and Aquila; for by their occupation they were tentmakers. Tents that are small portable tents, made of leather or cloth of goat’s hair or linen, used by travelers. (Strong, 2001. # 4635). It has been suggested that Paul needed to do some tent- making to support himself and his followers. (Butler, 1995, 421).

The question is not answered if they were already Christians, or were converted by Paul. The probability is favorable that they were already Christians when they came to Corinth. Paul stayed with Priscilla and Aquila in their home. 1 Corinthians 16:19-20 informs us that they held church in their house and they were greeted with a holy kiss.

It is thought that Priscilla, the wife of Aquila, was not a Jew because her name was usually put first. It is also thought she was of higher social standing than her husband and might have held a social position in Rome. Their home was always used as a meeting place for the Christians in Ephesus and in Rome. The holy kiss mentioned in 1 Corinthians 16:20 was a warm personal greeting in the early Christian churches to show friendship and love and service to Jesus Christ. (Roberts, 1916-1918).

Priscilla and Aquila were close to Paul and they accompanied Paul when he left Corinth to go to Ephesus. Paul added their names to the greetings he sent to Corinth and they were mentioned as fellow workers in Christ Jesus. Romans 16:3-4 Paul greets Priscilla and Aquila as his helper in Christ Jesus then continues to say of them: “who have for my life laid down their own necks: unto whom not only I give thanks, but also all the churches of the Gentiles.”

Aquila and Priscilla were dedicated believers. Acts 18:26 tells us they were dedicated to the teachings of Jesus. When Paul, Priscilla and Aquila came to Ephesus Paul left them and entered into the synagogue to reason with the Jews. There was a Jew born at Alexandria named Apollos. Priscilla and Aquila declared to Apollos the way of God more perfectly. Apollos only knew the baptism of John (Acts18:25); but when Aquila and Priscilla got through instructing him, his theology was straightened out and he was mightily used of God. Not many church members could do that today, for they have neither the knowledge nor the spiritual skill to help people spiritually. (Butler, 1995, 422).

Paul, Priscilla and Aquila worked and ministered together in Ephesus, which may be where Priscilla and Aquila “risked their necks” for Paul (Romans 16:4), possibly when he “fought with beasts at Ephesus.” Priscilla is sometimes pictured with two lions that refuse to attack her, lending credence to this tradition. (Christian, 1995).

Attribute of Priscilla can teach us about the harmony and togetherness of marriage. Priscilla and Aquila are always mentioned together. They did not compete against each other they were a couple and worked together as one flesh. They both worked together for the kingdom of the LORD.
We know they had trials, like when they were commanded to leave Rome. There is no family that is without problems and obviously these two knew how to hold on to each other and hold tight to the Lord Jesus Christ. They shared an occupation of tent-making. Together they were hospitable to those who followed after Jesus Christ both to Paul and then to Apollos. The scriptures command all Christians to be hospitable just like Priscilla and Aquila “Distributing to the necessity of saints; given to hospitality.” (Romans 12:13).

Priscilla and Aquila has also taught us to be helpers in Jesus Christ. Today we would say that they planted home churches everywhere they went. Their opened their homes to spread the word of the LORD. No matter where their travels took them they brought their Christianity alone with them and when they left a place they left a part of their Christianity behind to others to build upon.

Priscilla and Aquila has inspired us to help each of us to seek to be all we can be for the glory of the LORD. They have inspired us all to live our lives so we can be an example to all those in our lives to follow after Jesus Christ our Lord.


Butler, John G. (1995). Paul: The Missionary Apostle, Bible Biography Series. Clinton, IA: LBC Publications, vol. Number Eleven.

Christian History Magazine. (1995). The Apostle Paul & His Times. Carol Stream, IL: Christianity Today, Issue 47.

Doig, K.F. (1990). New Testament Chronology, Lewiston, NY: Edwin Mellen Press.

Luedemann, G. (1984). Paul, Apostle to the Gentiles: Studies in Chronology. Philadelphia: Fortress, 1984, 164, 166-169

Roberts, J. E. (1916-1918). “Aquila and Priscilla” In , in , vol. 1, Dictionary of the Apostolic Church (2 Vols.), ed. James Hastings (New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons, 1916-1918), 87-88.

Strong, James. (2001). The New Strong’s Expanded Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible. Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers, 2001.

Cite Article Source

MLA Style Citation:

Holstein, Joanne “Priscilla (or Prisca) and Aquila:.” Becker Bible Studies Library Jan 2015.<,>.

APA Style Citation:
Holstein, Joanne (2015, January) “Priscilla (or Prisca) and Aquila:.” Becker Bible Studies Library. Retrieved from,.

Chicago Style Citation:
Holstein, Joanne (2015) “Priscilla (or Prisca) and Aquila:.” Becker Bible Studies Library (January),, (accessed).

Joanne Holstein is a Becker Bible Studies Teacher and Author of Guided Bible Studies for Hungry Christians. She is a graduate of Psychology/Christian and Bible Counseling with Liberty University. She is well-known as a counselor to Christian faithful who are struggling with tremendous burden in these difficult times. She is a leading authority on historical development of Christian churches and the practices and beliefs of world religions and cults.

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