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New Testament

Paul’s Letters

Where was Crete?

Crete was (and is) a large Greek island. Some 1500 to 2000 years before the time of Paul, Crete was the home of the Minoan civilization. Under Minoan influence, the arts flourished in Crete. The people excelled in architecture, statuary, painting, and metalwork. Around 1200 B.C.E., the Minoan civilization disintegrated. The reason for the demise is not known for certain, but theories include an earthquake and a tidal wave. The island became a haven for pirates and other criminals. Lawlessness was the law. The Roman army conquered the island in 67 B.C.E., and restored order. However, Crete’s reputation as crime headquarters persisted through Paul’s day. He warned Titus of the reputation by quoting a seventh-century B.C.E. poet, Epimenedes: “The people of Crete are all liars; they are cruel animals and lazy gluttons.” (NLT, Titus 1:12) Today, Crete is a major vacation spot, drawing people from all over the world with its temperate climate, rich culture, and hospitable people.



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