|Acts 23 |
1 Then Paul, earnestly looking at the council, said, "Men and brothers, I have lived in all good conscience before God until this day."
2 And the high priest Ananias commanded those who stood by him to strike him on the mouth.
3 Then said Paul to him, "God shall strike you, you whitewashed wall. For do you judge me according to the law, and then command me to be struck contrary to the law? "
4 And those who stood by said, "Do you revile God's high priest?"
5 Then Paul said, "I did not know, brothers, that he was the high priest; for it is written, 'You shall not speak ill of the ruler of your people.'"
6 But when Paul perceived that one part of them were Sadducees and the other Pharisees, he cried out in the council, "Men and brothers, I am a Pharisee, the son of a Pharisee; I am on trial about the hope of the resurrection of the dead."
7 And when he had said this, there arose a dispute between the Pharisees and the Sadducees; and the assembly was divided.
8 For the Sadducees say that there is no resurrection, nor angel nor spirit; but the Pharisees acknowledge both.
9 And there arose a great outcry; and the scribes who were of the Pharisees' party arose and argued, saying, "We find no evil in this man. But if a spirit or an angel has spoken to him, let us not fight against God."
10 Now when there arose a great uproar, the commander, fearing that Paul would be pulled to pieces by them, commanded the soldiers to go down and to take him by force from among them, and bring him into the barracks.
11 Then the following night the Lord stood beside him and said, "Be of good cheer, Paul; for as you have testified of me in Jerusalem, so you must also testify in Rome."
12 Now when it was day, some of the Jews banded together and bound themselves with a oath, saying that they would neither eat nor drink until they had killed Paul.
13 There were more than forty who made this conspiracy.
14 And they came to the chief priests and elders, and said, "We have bound ourselves under a great oath, that we will eat nothing until we have killed Paul.
15 Therefore, you and the council notify the commander to bring him down to you tomorrow, as though you would more accurately inquire about him; and we are ready to kill him before he even comes near."
16 Now when Paul's sister's son heard of their lying in wait, he went into the barracks and told Paul.
17 Then Paul called one of the centurions to him and said, "Take this young man to the commander, for he has something to tell him."
18 So he took him to the commander and said, "Paul the prisoner called me to him, and asked me to bring this young man to you, who has something to say to you."
19 Then the commander took him by the hand, and went aside privately with him, and asked him, "What is it that you have to tell me? "
20 And he said, "The Jews have agreed to ask you to bring Paul down tomorrow into the council, as though they would inquire something of him more accurately.
21 But do not yield to them; for more than forty men lie in wait to ambush him, who have bound themselves with an oath that they will neither eat nor drink until they have killed him; and now they are ready, looking for agreement from you."
22 So the commander let the young man go and charged him, "See that you tell no man that you have told me these things."
23 Then he called two centurions to him, saying, "Make ready two hundred soldiers and seventy horsemen, and two hundred spearmen to go to Caesarea at the third hour of the night;
24 And provide mounts to put Paul on and bring him safely to Felix the governor."
25 Then he wrote a letter after this manner:
26 "Claudius Lysias sends greeting to the most excellent governor Felix.
27 This man was taken by the Jews, and would have been killed by them, but I came with an army and rescued him, having understood that he was a Roman.
28 So when I wanted to know why they accused him, I brought him into their council;
29 And I found him to be accused concerning questions of their law, but to have nothing charged against him that was worthy of death or imprisonment.
30 And when I was told that the Jews laid in wait for the man, I sent him immediately to you, and also commanded his accusers to bring what they had against him before you. Farewell."
31 Then the soldiers, as they were commanded, took Paul and brought him by night to Antipatris.
32 And the next day they left the horsemen to go on with him, and returned to the barracks,
33 Who, when they came to Caesarea and delivered the letter to the governor, presented Paul before him.
34 When the governor had read the letter, he asked what province he was from. And when he understood that he was of Cilicia,
35 He said, "I will hear you when your accusers have come." And he commanded him to be kept in Herod's judgment hall.
Previous Chapter | Next Chapter