“And from thence, when the brethren heard of us, they came to meet us as far as Appii forum, and The three taverns: whom when Paul saw, he thanked God, and took courage.”
King James Version (KJV)
28:15 The brethren - That is, the Christians, came out thence to meet us - It is remarkable that there is no certain account by whom Christianity was planted at Rome. Probably some inhabitants of that city were at Jerusalem on the day of pentecost, #Acts 2:10|; and being then converted themselves, carried the Gospel thither at their return. Appii - Forum was a town fifty - one miles from Rome; the Three Taverns about thirty. He took courage - He saw Christ was at Rome also, and now forgot all the troubles of his journey.
Ac 28:15 And from there. After the week they started toward Rome. Their route was along one of the great roads for which the Romans were so famous, the Consular Way to Capus, and the along the celebrated Appian Way to Rome. When the brethren heard of us. The church in Rome. They determined to meet the great apostle on the way. They had already received from him the Epistles to the Romans. No doubt some of his Asiatic or European converts were in the church. Aquila and Priscilla had returned to their old home (Ro 16:3) in the Imperial city, and perhaps were of those who met him on the way. As far as Appii Forum. Some met them at Appii Forum, which is forty-three miles from Rome, and another band met them at The Three Taverns, which is ten miles nearer the great city. Both these places are mentioned by Horace ("Satires" 1:5,4) and Cicero ("Letters to Atticus" 2:12). He thanked God. As the apostle traveled as a prisoner amid these strange scenes, along the crowded Appian Way, with so many evidences of colossal power on every hand, and of such luxury and corruption, it was a glad sight to meet a welcome from loving brethren, already numerous in Rome. See Ro 16:1,3,5-15. It seemed a cheering omen that the church of the capital of the world should meet and greet him. The distance traveled by land from Puteoli to Rome as about 135 miles.