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Simon the Tanner

Simon the Tanner

Doorway to the traditional location of the House of Simon the Tanner, located in the Old City of Jaffa.In my last post, I showed a picture of St. Peter's Church in modern day Jaffa (ancient Joppa). This church sits on the traditional location where Peter raised Dorcas from the dead. In that post, I quoted from Acts 9:26-42. In this post, I wanted to discuss the next verse.

So it was that he [Peter] stayed many days in Joppa with Simon, a tanner. - Acts 9:43

After Peter raised Dorcas from the dead, he stayed with a gentleman by the name of Simon. In the next chapter, we learn a little more about Simon's house. An angel speaks to Cornelius, who lived in Caesarea, and tells him to go find Peter.

So he said to him, “Your prayers and your alms have come up for a memorial before God. Now send men to Joppa, and send for Simon whose surname is Peter. He is lodging with Simon, a tanner, whose house is by the sea. He will tell you what you must do.” - Acts 10:4-6

From this verse, we learn that Simon's house was by the sea.

As you walk through the narrow corridors of the Old City of Jaffa, you come across a humble door (pictured above) which is marked as the "House of Simon the Tanner".

Often, when you are the Holy Lands, you see churches or markers denoting the "traditional" locations of many Biblical events. Some of the locations are rooted in a thread of fact, so there is some justification to their claim. Others have to scrutinized a little more closely in light of Scripture. (And there are some, which are just plain wrong.)

Is this home in the ancient city of Joppa? Yes. Is it on the seashore? Yes. (The west side of this building is almost directly on the shoreline.) Is this the real house of Simon the Tanner? Probably not, especially given the fact that the architecture is clearly much more recent. Does it sit on the location of the original house? There is no way of knowing.

Regardless, it is interesting. And, seeing this locations, even if they are not exactly correct, help you to understand the Scriptures more.