on Acts 13 :13
Paul and his company loosed from Paphos - They sailed away from this island, leaving, it may be presumed, Elymas a sincere and deeply humbled penitent; and Sergius Paul, a thorough and happy believer in the doctrine of Christ.
Previously to this time, St. Luke always mentions Barnabas before Paul; but after this he mentions Paul always first; probably after seeing how God had distinguished him in the late proceedings at Cyprus; as much of the Holy Spirit now rested upon him.
They came to Perga in Pamphylia - As Perga was not a maritime town, it is conjectured that the apostles sailed up the river Cestrus, in order to come to this place, which, according to Strabo, was situated about sixty leagues up this river, and near to which was a famous temple dedicated to Diana. For Pamphylia, see Acts 2:10.
And John departing from them - Why John Mark left his brethren at this place we are not informed; probably he went to visit his pious mother Mary at Jerusalem, and to see Peter, to whom he is supposed to have been much attached. It certainly was not with the approbation of Paul that he left them at this place, as we learn from Acts 15:38; yet his departure does not seem to have merited the displeasure of Barnabas; for John Mark having met these apostles at Antioch, when Paul purposed to revisit the various places where they had planted the word of God, Barnabas was willing to take him with them; but Paul would not consent, because he had departed from them from Pamphylia, and went not with them to the work, Acts 15:35-39, and this occasioned a separation between Barnabas and Paul. It does not appear that John Mark was under any obligation to accompany them any longer or any farther than he pleased. He seems to have been little else than their servant, and certainly was not divinely appointed to this work, as they were; and consequently might leave them innocently, though not kindly, if they could not readily supply his place. In this respect John Mark might be to blame; but Barnabas, whose nephew he was, could look over this fault more easily than Paul, who could not find those motives to pass by what was reprehensible in his conduct which natural affection might furnish to his brother apostle.
on Acts 13 :13
Paul and his company - Those with him - Barnabas and John - and perhaps others who had been converted at Paphos; for it was common for many of the converts to Christianity to attend on the apostles in their travels. See Acts 9:3 O.
Loosed from Paphos - Departed from Paphos. See the notes on Acts 13:6.
They came to Perga in Pamphylia - Pamphylia was a province of Asia Minor, lying over against Cyprus, having Cilicia east, Lycia west, Pisidia north, and the Mediterranean south. Perga was the metropolis of Pamphylia, and was situated, not on the seacoast, but on the river Cestus, at some distance from its mouth. There was on a mountain near it a celebrated temple of Diana.
And John departing from them ... - Why he departed from them is unknown. It might have been from fear of danger; or from alarm in traveling so far into unknown regions. But it is plain from Acts 15:38, that it was from some cause which was deemed blameworthy, and that his conduct now was such as to make Paul unwilling again to have him as a companion.
on Acts 13 :13
13:13 John withdrawing from them returned - Tired with the fatigue, or shrinking from danger.