Companions of Paul on his journeys

Companions of Paul on his journeys
Companions of Paul on his journeys

Companions of Paul
A journey of faith

The Apostle Paul embarked on multiple missionary journeys across the Mediterranean region, and several individuals are mentioned as his companions at various times in the Acts of the Apostles and in his epistles. Some of these companions played significant roles in the early Christian movement, assisting Paul in spreading the gospel, establishing churches, and encouraging believers.

Summary of some key companions of Paul, noting that this list is not exhaustive and the involvement of these individuals varied across different journeys and contexts:

  • Barnabas: Initially a close companion of Paul, Barnabas accompanied him on the first missionary journey. They parted ways before the second journey over a disagreement regarding John Mark.
  • Silas (Silvanus): Chosen by Paul to accompany him on the second missionary journey after the separation from Barnabas. Silas is mentioned as being with Paul in many of his missions.
  • Timothy: Met during the second missionary journey, Timothy became a close companion and mentee of Paul. He is mentioned frequently in Acts and the Pauline epistles.
  • Luke: The author of the Gospel of Luke and Acts of the Apostles, Luke is often assumed to have traveled with Paul at various times, especially during Paul’s journey to Rome, as indicated by the “we” passages in Acts.
  • Priscilla and Aquila: A married couple who first met Paul in Corinth during his second missionary journey. They became close associates in ministry, moving with him to Ephesus and mentioned in several letters.
  • John Mark (Mark): Accompanied Paul and Barnabas on the first missionary journey but left them early on. His departure caused the disagreement between Paul and Barnabas. Later, Paul mentions him positively, indicating a reconciliation.
  • Titus: A Gentile Christian who became a trusted associate and emissary of Paul, especially in dealing with the church in Corinth.
  • Apollos: While not a traveling companion, Apollos was an important figure in the early church who worked closely with Paul’s companions Priscilla and Aquila.
  • Epaphroditus: Sent by the Philippians to assist Paul, he is mentioned in the Letter to the Philippians as a co-worker and fellow soldier.
  • Tychicus: Described as a dear brother, faithful minister, and fellow servant in the Lord; Paul sent him to various churches to deliver letters and report on Paul’s situation.
  • Onesimus: A runaway slave from Colossae who became a Christian under Paul’s ministry in Rome and was the subject of the Letter to Philemon.
  • Aristarchus: Mentioned several times in Acts and the epistles, Aristarchus was from Thessalonica and joined Paul on his journey to Rome.

These individuals represent a cross-section of the early Christian community, coming from diverse backgrounds and playing various roles in the mission of the church. Their companionship with Paul underscores the communal and collaborative nature of early Christian missionary activity.


Portrayal of the companions of Paul

Creating a comprehensive portrayal of the companions of Paul, as described in Acts, the Gospel of Luke, and the Epistles, requires weaving together the rich tapestry of early Christian history, archaeological insights, and scriptural studies.

The Apostle Paul, known for his profound influence on Christianity, embarked on several missionary journeys across the Roman Empire, spreading the message of Jesus Christ. His letters and the Acts of the Apostles mention numerous individuals who played crucial roles in these endeavors.

Each of these figures—Barnabas, Luke, Timothy, Silas, Priscilla and Aquila, and John-Mark—played a pivotal role in the spread of early Christianity, and their interactions with Paul and each other present a fascinating narrative full of camaraderie, faith, and adventure.

The Encourager


Joseph, called Barnabas by the apostles, which means “son of encouragement,” was a Levite from Cyprus. He is first introduced in the Acts of the Apostles as a man who sold a field and laid the money at the apostles’ feet. Barnabas was instrumental in introducing Saul (Paul) to the other apostles in Jerusalem, vouching for his genuine conversion. He later joined Paul on his first missionary journey. Their partnership was pivotal in the establishment of the early church in Antioch, Cyprus, and Asia Minor. However, a sharp disagreement over John Mark’s participation in their mission led to their separation.


Barnabas, as envisioned, standing on the shores of Cyprus. His presence in this scene captures the warmth and spirit of encouragement that he was known for, against the picturesque backdrop of the Mediterranean. 

The Faithful Companion


Silas, a leader in the early Christian community, was chosen to accompany Paul on his second missionary journey after the split with Barnabas. Silas, also known as Silvanus, is mentioned in several of Paul’s letters, highlighting his role as Paul’s faithful companion and co-author. Together, they faced imprisonment in Philippi, but their faith led to a miraculous escape and the conversion of the jailer and his family. Silas’s steadfastness and prophetic gifts were invaluable to Paul and the communities they served.


This illustration of Silas captures a moment of profound faith and resilience, set within the confines of a Philippi prison cell. The interplay of light and shadow not only emphasizes the miraculous nature of their situation but also the unwavering spirit of Silas and Paul. It’s a powerful representation of their story. 

The Beloved Disciple


Timothy is one of the most endearing figures in the New Testament, often referred to as Paul’s “true son in the faith.” A native of Lystra, his mother was a Jewish believer named Eunice, and his grandmother Lois was also a woman of faith. Timothy joined Paul and Silas on their journeys, becoming an essential figure in the early church. Paul’s letters to Timothy reveal a deep, paternal bond and offer personal advice on leading the church. Timothy’s mixed Jewish-Gentile heritage and his dedication to Paul’s teachings made him a key figure in spreading the Gospel to diverse communities.


Timothy’s illustration captures a pivotal moment of mentorship and spiritual passage, set against the backdrop of Lystra. It reflects a blend of youth, determination, and the profound influence of Paul. With this, we’ve brought another companion’s story to visual life. 

Priscilla and Aquila
The Tentmaker Couple


Priscilla and Aquila, a married couple who worked as tentmakers, met Paul in Corinth. Sharing the same trade, they quickly formed a close bond with him. They accompanied Paul to Ephesus, where they played a significant role in instructing Apollos, an eloquent speaker and leader in the early church. The couple is frequently mentioned in the New Testament, exemplifying a partnership in ministry and hospitality towards fellow believers.

Paul and Aquila, husband of Priscilla
Paul and Aquila, husband of Priscilla

Paul and Aquila, husband of Priscilla, are brought to life in the tent workshop, a scene that captures their essence as both craftsmen and foundational figures in the early Christian community. Their partnership shines through, set against the backdrop of ancient Rome. It’s a visual narrative that intertwines their personal skills with their spiritual mission. With this piece, we’ve added another layer to our series of visual stories. 

The Faithful Historian


Though not always directly mentioned alongside Paul during his journeys, Luke, the author of the Gospel of Luke and the Acts of the Apostles, is believed to have been a close companion of Paul. A physician by trade, Luke’s detailed accounts of Paul’s travels and teachings have been invaluable to the understanding of the early Christian church’s history. His writings reflect a careful historian’s eye and a deep theological understanding, contributing significantly to the New Testament canon.


Luke, captured in a moment of contemplation and creation, surrounded by the essence of his Greek heritage and his dual role as a physician and a gospel writer. This piece aims to reflect both the cultural and spiritual dimensions of his contributions. 

John Mark
Redemption and Reconciliation

John Mark, cousin to Barnabas, started on the first missionary journey with Paul and Barnabas but left them early in the journey. This caused a temporary rift between Paul and Barnabas. However, John Mark’s story is one of redemption and reconciliation; he later becomes a valuable coworker to Paul, as mentioned in Paul’s letters. His journey reflects the themes of forgiveness and growth within the early Christian community.

More about him


John-Mark is vividly captured in this scene, standing at the cusp of his journeys and contributions, with the bustling energy of an ancient port as his backdrop. This illustration reflects his unique path—marked by travel, learning, and ultimately, writing one of the Gospels. It’s a fitting tribute to his role in the early Christian story, highlighting movement, change, and the power of redemption. With John-Mark’s depiction, we’ve woven another thread into the rich tapestry of early Christian narratives.

The Broader Circle

In addition to these key figures, Paul’s letters and the Acts of the Apostles mention many others, including Titus, Epaphras, Philemon, Epaphroditus, and many more, each contributing in unique ways to the spread of the Gospel and the establishment of the early church. These individuals, coming from diverse backgrounds and with different gifts, highlight the inclusive and communal nature of early Christian missionary work.

Paul’s companions played critical roles in the spread of Christianity and the establishment of early Christian communities across the Roman Empire. Their diverse backgrounds, combined with their shared commitment to the Gospel, facilitated the growth of a movement that would transform the world. Through their stories, we glimpse the early church’s challenges, joys, and profound faith in Jesus Christ.

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Enjoy travelling in their footsteps and discover their stories!

Article written with help of openai‘s chatGPT language Models, Dalle and Picsart

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