Acts 22:1 – 23:30
Acts 22:1 – 23:30
Paul’s Defense before the Jewish Mob
1 Brethren and fathers, hear my defence which I now make to you. 2 And hearing that he addressed them in the Hebrew tongue, they kept the more quiet; and he says, 3 “I” am a Jew, born in Tarsus of Cilicia, but brought up in this city, at the feet of Gamaliel, educated according to the exactness of the law of our fathers, being zealous for God, as “ye” are all this day; 4 who have persecuted this way unto death, binding and delivering up to prisons both men and women; 5 as also the high priest bears me witness, and all the elderhood: from whom also, having received letters to the brethren, I went to Damascus to bring those also who were there, bound, to Jerusalem, to be punished. 6 And it came to pass, as I was journeying and drawing near to Damascus, that, about mid-day, there suddenly shone out of heaven a great light round about me. 7 And I fell to the ground, and heard a voice saying to me, Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me? 8 And “I” answered, Who art thou, Lord? And he said to me, “I” am Jesus the Nazaraean, whom “thou” persecutest. 9 But they that were with me beheld the light, and were filled with fear, but heard not the voice of him that was speaking to me. 10 And I said, What shall I do, Lord? And the Lord said to me, Rise up, and go to Damascus, and there it shall be told thee of all things which it is appointed thee to do. 11 And as I could not see, through the glory of that light, being led by the hand of those who were with me, I came to Damascus. 12 And a certain Ananias, a pious man according to the law, borne witness to by all the Jews who dwelt there, 13 coming to me and standing by me, said to me, Brother Saul, receive thy sight. And “I”, in the same hour, received my sight and saw him. 14 And he said, The God of our fathers has chosen thee beforehand to know his will, and to see the just one, and to hear a voice out of his mouth; 15 for thou shalt be a witness for him to all men of what thou hast seen and heard. 16 And now why lingerest thou? Arise and get baptised, and have thy sins washed away, calling on his name. 17 And it came to pass when I had returned to Jerusalem, and as I was praying in the temple, that I became in ecstasy, 18 and saw him saying to me, Make haste and go quickly out of Jerusalem, for they will not receive thy testimony concerning me. 19 And “I” said, Lord, they themselves know that “I” was imprisoning and beating in every synagogue those that believe on thee; 20 and when the blood of thy witness Stephen was shed, I also myself was standing by and consenting, and kept the clothes of them who killed him. 21 And he said to me, Go, for “I” will send thee to the nations afar off. 22 And they heard him until this word, and lifted up their voice, saying, Away with such a one as that from the earth, for it was not fit he should live. 23 And as they were crying, and throwing away their clothes, and casting dust into the air, 24 the chiliarch commanded him to be brought into the fortress, saying that he should be examined by scourging, that he might ascertain for what cause they cried thus against him. 25 But as they stretched him forward with the thongs, Paul said to the centurion who stood by, Is it lawful for you to scourge a man who is a Roman and uncondemned? 26 And the centurion, having heard it, went and reported it to the chiliarch, saying, What art thou going to do? for this man is a Roman. 27 And the chiliarch coming up said to him, Tell me, Art “thou” a Roman? And he said, Yes. 28 And the chiliarch answered, “I”, for a great sum, bought this citizenship. And Paul said, But “I” was also free born. 29 Immediately therefore those who were going to examine him left him, and the chiliarch also was afraid when he ascertained that he was a Roman, and because he had bound him. 30 And on the morrow, desirous to know the certainty of the matter why he was accused of the Jews, he loosed him, and commanded the chief priests and all the council to meet, and having brought Paul down set him before them.