From BiblePortal Wikipedia

Hastings' Dictionary of the New Testament [1]


Trophimus was a Christian convert belonging to Ephesus ( Acts 21:29) and a companion of the apostle Paul on his third missionary journey ( Acts 20:4). He is called along with Tychicus an Asian (Ἀσιανοί), and the two appear together as deputies of the Ephesian church, by which they were appointed to carry their contribution to the poorer brethren of Jerusalem. Both were with St. Paul in Macedonia and accompanied him to Asia, and thence preceded him to Troas, where they were joined by the delegates from the other churches-Sopater of Berœa, Aristarchus and Secundus from Thessalonica, Gaius of Derbe, and Timothy. After the Apostle’s arrival at Troas the whole company seem to have journeyed together to Jerusalem. We find from  Acts 21:29 that Trophimus had been seen in the Apostle’s company in Jerusalem, and the riot raised against the Apostle was made ostensibly on the ground that St. Paul had introduced Trophimus, a Gentile, into the Temple.

We have no means of knowing whether Trophimus accompanied St. Paul to Rome after his appeal to Caesar, but we find him again in the Apostle’s company after the first imprisonment. He is mentioned in  2 Timothy 4:20 as having been left at Miletus sick. In  2 Corinthians 8:18-24 reference is made to two companions of the Apostle who accompanied Titus from Ephesus to Corinth with the Second Epistle to the Corinthians. It has been suggested that these two were the Ephesian friends of the Apostle, Tychicus and Trophimus, who had previously been appointed to travel with him, carrying the offerings of the Churches ( 2 Corinthians 8:19). We have, however, far too scanty evidence to make any certain identification (cf. J. H. Bernard, in Expositor’s Greek Testament , ‘2 Corinthians,’ 1903, p. 89).

W. F. Boyd.

Fausset's Bible Dictionary [2]

Paul's companion, a Gentile of Ephesus ( Acts 21:29). Accompanied him on his return from his third missionary journey through Asia to Jerusalem. While Tychicus, his associate, a fellow Asiatic, was left behind on the route ( Acts 20:4) Trophimus went forward with Paul. The Jews raised a tumult supposing Paul had introduced Trophimus a Gentile convert into the temple. Paul left Trophimus sick at Miletus just before his own second Roman imprisonment ( 2 Timothy 4:12;  2 Timothy 4:20).

Trophimus was probably one of the two brethren who with Titus carried the Second Epistle to the Corinthians ( 2 Corinthians 8:16-24, especially  2 Corinthians 8:22, since  2 Corinthians 8:18 refers to Luke). Trophimus was probably the brother sent before with Titus ( 2 Corinthians 12:18), and therefore must have been sent from Ephesus; he was moreover an Ephesian. A Gentile like Titus. Connected with Paul in the mission of collecting for the poor in Judaea; he was moreover with Paul on his return from this very visit to Corinth. Tradition makes him beheaded by Nero.

Watson's Biblical & Theological Dictionary [3]

a disciple of St. Paul, and an Ephesian by birth. He came from Ephesus to Corinth with the Apostle, and kept him company in his whole journey from Corinth to Jerusalem, A.D. 58,  Acts 20:4 . When St. Paul was in the temple there, the Jews laid hold of him, crying out, "Men of Israel, help; this is the man that teacheth all men every where against the people, and the law, and this place; and farther, brought Greeks also into the temple, and hath polluted this holy place,"  Acts 21:28-29 . And this they said, because certain Jews of Ephesus having seen Trophimus with St. Paul in the city, whom they looked upon as a Gentile, imagined that St. Paul had introduced him into the temple. The whole city was immediately in an uproar, and St. Paul was secured. Trophimus afterward accompanied St. Paul; for that Apostle writes to Timothy, that he had left Trophimus sick at Miletus,  2 Timothy 4:20 .

American Tract Society Bible Dictionary [4]

A disciple of Paul, a Gentile and an Ephesian by birth, came to Corinth with the apostle, and accompanied him in his whole journey to Jerusalem, A. D. 58,  Acts 20:4 . When the apostle was in the temple there, the Jews laid hold of him, crying out, "He hath brought Greeks into the temple, and hath polluted this holy place;" because, having seen him in the city accompanied by Trophimus, they imagined that he had introduced him into the temple.

Some years afterwards, Paul writes that he had left him sick at Miletus,  2 Timothy 4:20 . This did not occur at Paul's former visit to Millets, since Trophimus went with him to Jerusalem; nor on the voyage to Rome, for they did not go near Millets. It is therefore one of the circumstances which prove that Paul was released, and revisited Asia Minor, Crete, Macedonia, and perhaps Spain, before his second imprisonment and death. Of Trophimus nothing farther is known.

Smith's Bible Dictionary [5]

Troph'imus. (Nutritious). Both Trophimus and Tychicus accompanied Paul, from Macedonia as far as Asia, but Tychicus seems to have remained there, while Trophimus proceeded, with the apostle to Jerusalem. (A.D. 54). There, he was the innocent cause of the tumult, in which St. Paul was apprehended.  Acts 21:27-29.

From this passage we learn two new facts, namely, that Trophimus was a Gentile, and that he was a native of Trophimus was probably one brethren who, with Titus, conveyed the second Epistle to the Corinthians.  2 Corinthians 8:16-24. See Tychicus .

Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible [6]

TROPHIMUS . A Gentile Christian, a native of Ephesus (  Acts 21:29 ), who, with Tychicus, also of the province Asia (  Acts 20:4 ), and others, accompanied St. Paul to Jerusalem. The Jews, seeing Trophimus with the Apostle in the city, hastily concluded that St. Paul had brought him into the inner court of the Temple, separated from the outer ‘Court of the Gentiles’ by a barrier on which were inscriptions in Greek and Latin forbidding any non-Jew to enter on pain of death. This occasioned the riot which led to St. Paul’s arrest. Some years later Trophimus was left at Miletus sick (  2 Timothy 4:20 ).

A. J. Maclean.

People's Dictionary of the Bible [7]

Trophimus ( Trŏf'I-Mŭs ), Foster-Child. A native of Ephesus,  Acts 21:29, and a convert to the gospel, probably under Paul's ministry.  Acts 20:4. He became one of the apostle's companions and helpers in missionary travels and labors.  2 Timothy 4:20.

Morrish Bible Dictionary [8]

Convert of Ephesus who accompanied Paul to Jerusalem, and whom the Jews thought Paul had taken into the temple.  Acts 20:4;  Acts 21:29 . In  2 Timothy 4:20 Paul had left him at Miletus sick.

Holman Bible Dictionary [9]

 Acts 20:4-5 Acts 21:29 Acts 21:19 2 Timothy 4:20

Easton's Bible Dictionary [10]

 Acts 20:4 21:29 2 Timothy 4:20

International Standard Bible Encyclopedia [11]

trof´i - mus ( Τρόφιμος , Tróphimos , literally, "a foster child" (  Acts 20:4;  Acts 21:29;  2 Timothy 4:20 )): An Asiatic Christian, a friend and companion-in-travel of the apostle Paul.

1. An Ephesian:

In the first of the three passages in which Trophimus is mentioned, he and Tychicus are called Asianoı́ , that is, natives of the Roman province of Asia; and making it still more definite, in   Acts 21:29 , he is termed an "Ephesian." Trophimus was one of eight friends, who accompanied Paul at the close of his 3rd missionary journey, and traveled with him from Greece through Macedonia into Asia, and onward by sea until Jerusalem was reached (see Tychicus ). Trophimus went with Paul all the way, for, in the second of the passages referred to, he is mentioned as being with Paul in Jerusalem immediately on the close of this journey.

2. Cause of Paul's Arrest:

He was the innocent cause of Paul being assaulted, in the courts of the temple by the Jewish mob, and then of his being arrested and imprisoned by the Romans. The occasion of this outrage was that the Jews supposed that Paul had "brought Greeks also into the temple, and ... defiled this holy place" ( Acts 21:28 ). The modicum of fact lying at the root of this false accusation was that they had seen Paul and Trophimus in each other's company in the city. On this slender basis "they supposed" that Paul had brought Trophimus past the barrier or middle wall of partition ( Ephesians 2:14; see Partition ), beyond which no Gentile was allowed to penetrate on pain of death. They supposed that Trophimus who was neither a Jew nor a proselyte, but Gentile Christian, had been introduced into the temple itself by Paul - which would have been profanation. Hence, their fury against the apostle.

How strongly they insisted on the crime which Trophimus was falsely alleged to have committed on that occasion, is seen again in the way in which the orator Tertullus repeated the charge against Paul before the Roman governor Felix, who moreover assayed to profane the temple" ( Acts 24:6 ).

3. At Miletus:

The third reference to Trophimus is in  2 Timothy 4:20 , "Trophimus I left at Miletus sick." This final notice shows that he was again - several years after the date indicated in the previous passages - traveling with Paul on one of the missionary journeys which the apostle undertook after being liberated from his first imprisonment in Rome. It is exceedingly difficult, perhaps impossible, to trace the course of the different journeys which Paul now made, as there is no such narrative as is given in Acts for the former journeys, but merely incidental notices of his later travels, in the Pastoral Epistles. In this, the last of all his letters - 2 Timothy - P aul indicates various places which he had visited, and also the names of friends who traveled with him on this the last of his apostolic journeys.

Among other places, he had visited Miletus, a city on the coast of the province of Asia; and there his old friend Trophimus had been laid down with illness, so severe that he could travel no farther, but Paul left him "at Miletus sick." It is to be noted that Miletus was not far from Ephesus, which was Trophimus' native city. There would be much intercourse between the two cities (see  Acts 17 , where Paul sends for the elders of the church at Ephesus to come to him at Miletus, which they did). Trophimus therefore, in his sickness, could easily reach Ephesus, or his friends from that city could quickly come to him at Miletus, and give him whatever attention and nursing he might require.

4. The Description of  2 Corinthians 8:18 :

It has been conjectured that Trophimus is to be identified with the person mentioned in  2 Corinthians 8:16-24 . Paul there speaks in the highest terms of one of his companions - but without giving his name - whom he sent with Titus. Titus and this disciple were evidently those to whose care Paul entrusted the carrying of the Second Epistle to the Corinthians to its destination. The apostle says of this unnamed brother, not only that his praise is in the gospel throughout all the churches, but also that he was chosen by the churches to travel with him, i.e. with Paul, with this grace, i.e. with the contribution of money collected in the Gentile churches for the poor saints in Jerusalem.

Now it is certain that at the close of his 3missionary journey Paul carried these gifts to Jerusalem ("I came to bring alms to my nation, and offerings,"  Acts 24:17 ); and some of the eight friends who accompanied him on the journey ( Acts 20:4 ) were those who had been entrusted by the churches with the safe conveyance of the money. Speaking of these collections, Paul writes ( 1 Corinthians 16:3-4 ). "Whomsoever ye shall approve, them will I send with letters to carry your bounty unto Jerusalem: and if it be meet for me to go also, they shall go with me." These conditions were fulfilled, when Paul and his eight friends traveled from Greece to Jerusalem, carrying the money with them. There is therefore certainty that one of the eight is the brother referred to in  2 Corinthians 8:18 , whose praise in the gospel was in all the churches, and whom the churches had appointed to travel with Paul for the purpose of carrying the money contribution, and whom Paul had "many times proved earnest in many things" ( 2 Corinthians 8:18 ,  2 Corinthians 8:19 ,  2 Corinthians 8:22 ). The eight were Sopater of Berea, Aristarchus and Secundus, both from Thessalonica, Gaius of Derbe, Timothy, Tychicus and Trophimus, both "Asians," and lastly Luke.

There is certainly the possibility that the unnamed brother was Trophimus: if not Trophimus, then he was one of the other seven. Of these seven, by the process of elimination, the unnamed brother could only be one of those who traveled with Paul the whole distance as far as Jerusalem, for this was the work which "the brother" had been appointed by the churches to do. Now it is certain that Luke and Trophimus were with him on his arrival in Jerusalem ( Acts 21:17 ,  Acts 21:29 ). Therefore the brother whose praise in the gospel was in all the churches may very well have been Trophimus: if not Trophimus, then possibly Luke or Aristarchus. Gaius and Aristarchus are termed "Paul's companions in travel" ( Acts 19:29 ); and Aristarchus was afterward with Paul in Palestine, and sailed with him to Rome. It is quite remarkable that the same word, συνἐκδημος , sunékdēmos , "companion in travel," is applied to the unnamed brother ( 2 Corinthians 8:19 ), and to Gaius and Aristarchus in  Acts 19:29 .

As the conditions do not seem to be satisfied in Sopater, Secundus or Timothy, the brother so highly commended must have been either Luke or Gaius or Aristarchus or Tychicus or Trophimus.

Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature [12]

( Τρόφιμος , Nutritious ) a Hellenistic Christian, who with others traveled with the apostle Paul in the course of his third missionary journey, and during part of the route which he took in returning from Macedonia towards Syria ( Acts 20:4). A.D. 54. From what we know concerning the collection which was going on at this time for the poor Christians in Judaea, we are disposed to connect him with the business of that contribution. Both he and Tychicus accompanied Paul from Macedonia as far as Asia ( Ἄχρι Τῆς Ἀσίας frag, Clc. Cit. ) , but Tychicus seems to have remained there, while Trophimus proceeded with the apostle to Jerusalem.

There he was the innocent cause of the tumult in which Paul was apprehended, and from which the voyage to Rome ultimately resulted. Certain Jews from the district of Asia saw the two Christian missionaries together, and Supposed that Paul had taken Trophimus into the Temple (21:27-29). From this passage we learn two new facts, viz. that Trophimus was a Gentile and that he was a native not simply of Asia; but of Ephesus. A considerable interval now elapses, during which we have no trace of either Tychicus or Trophimus; but in the last letter written by Paul, shortly before his martyrdom, from Rome, he mentions them both ( Τυχικὸν Ἀπέστειλα Εἰς ῎Εφεσον ; ,  2 Timothy 4:12; Τρόφιμον Ἀπέλιπον Ἐν Μιλητῳ Ἀσθε Νοῦντα ,  2 Timothy 4:20).

From the last of the phrases we gather simply that the apostle had no long time before been in the Levant, that Trophimus had been with him, and a that he had been left in infirm health at Miletus. Of the further details we are ignorant; but this we may say here, that while there would be considerable difficulty in accommodating this passage to any part of the recorded narrative previous to the voyage to Rome, all difficulty vanishes on the supposition of two imprisonments, and a journey in the Levant between them. Trophimus was no doubt at Miletus on the occasion' recorded in  Acts 20:15-38, but it is most certain that he was not left there. The theory also that he was left there on the voyage to Rome is preposterous; for the wind forced Paul's vessel to run direct from the south-west corner of Asia Minor to the east end of Crete ( Acts 27:7). We may add that when Trophimus was left in sickness at Miletus, whenever that might be; he was within easy reach of his home friends at Ephesus, as we see from 20:17.

Stanley thinks that Trophimus was one of the two brethren who, with Titus, conveyed the Second Epistle to the Corinthians ( 2 Corinthians 8:16-24). "Trophimus was like Titus, one of the few Gentiles who accompanied the apostle; an Ephesian, and therefore likely to have been sent by the apostle from Ephesus with the first epistle, or to have accompanied him from Ephesus now; he was, as is implied of this brother,' whose praise was in all the churches, well known; so well known that the Jews of Asia [Minor?] at Jerusalem immediately recognized him; he was also especially connected with the apostle on this very mission of the collection for the poor in Judaea. Thus far would appear from the description of him in  Acts 21:29. From 20:4 it also appears that he was with Paul on his return from this very visit to Corinth" ( Commentary On Corinthians, 2nd ed. p. 492).

The traditional story that Trophimus was one of the seventy disciples is evidently wrong; but that part of the legend which states that he was beheaded by Nero's orders is possibly true (Menol. Gr. 3, 57).

Kitto's Popular Cyclopedia of Biblial Literature [13]

Troph´imus, a disciple of Ephesus, who accompanied St. Paul into Judea, and was the innocent cause of the dangers which the apostle there encountered; for having been recognized by some Jews of Asia Minor, and seen in company with Paul, they took occasion to accuse Paul of having brought Greeks into the temple . His name does not again occur till after, seemingly, the first imprisonment of Paul. In one of the ensuing journeys he remained behind at Miletus sick . This circumstance is regarded as furnishing a strong fact to show that Paul was twice imprisoned at Rome; for Trophimus, in the first passage to Miletus , was not left behind, but proceeded to Judea; after which we do not lose sight of Paul for one day, and know that he was not again at Miletus before his first imprisonment at Rome.