The name Lucius has been made famous, or infamous, by J. K. Rowling’s best-selling series, “Harry Potter.” It is, however, a biblical name. Derived from the Latin word lux, meaning “light,” the biblical men who carried this name were far more moral than Rowling’s slippery character.
The first Lucius in the Bible appears in Acts 13. He was a member of the Christian church in Antioch despite being identified as from Cyrene, a city more than 6 weeks travel away. Lucius of Cyrene is one of five teachers and prophets described as being part of the church in Antioch. The others were Barnabas, Simeon, who was also called Niger, Manaen and, of course, Paul himself.
The other biblical reference to Lucius is in Paul’s Epistle to the Romans. Paul ends his letter with a listing of those who send greetings to the Christians in Rome as well as a list of those already in Rome who deserve greetings or recognition for their deeds. Among those sending greetings is a Jewish man named Lucius. Little else is known about him save that he is one of three of Paul’s “fellow Jews” who sends greetings to the young Christian church in Rome and is, presumably, of upright character in Paul’s eyes since his greetings were conveyed instead of ignored.