Paul’s Defense before the Sanhedrin & Deliverance to Felix
1 And Paul, fixing his eyes on the council, said, Brethren, I have walked in all good conscience with God unto this day. 2 But the high priest Ananias ordered those standing by him to smite his mouth. 3 Then Paul said to him, God will smite thee, whited wall. And “thou”, dost thou sit judging me according to the law, and breaking the law commandest me to be smitten? 4 And those that stood by said, Dost thou rail against the high priest of God? 5 And Paul said, I was not conscious, brethren, that he was high priest; for it is written, Thou shalt not speak evilly of the ruler of thy people. 6 But Paul, knowing that the one part of them were of the Sadducees and the other of the Pharisees, cried out in the council, Brethren, “I” am a Pharisee, son of Pharisees: “I” am judged concerning the hope and resurrection of the dead. 7 And when he had spoken this, there was a tumult of the Pharisees and the Sadducees, and the multitude was divided. 8 For Sadducees say there is no resurrection, nor angel, nor spirit; but Pharisees confess both of them. 9 And there was a great clamour, and the scribes of the Pharisees’ part rising up contended, saying, We find nothing evil in this man; and if a spirit has spoken to him, or an angel … 10 And a great tumult having arisen, the chiliarch, fearing lest Paul should have been torn in pieces by them, commanded the troop to come down and take him by force from the midst of them, and to bring him into the fortress. 11 But the following night the Lord stood by him, and said, Be of good courage; for as thou hast testified the things concerning me at Jerusalem, so thou must bear witness at Rome also. 12 And when it was day, the Jews, having banded together, put themselves under a curse, saying that they would neither eat nor drink till they should kill Paul. 13 And they were more than forty who had joined together in this oath; 14 and they went to the chief priests and elders, and said, We have cursed ourselves with a curse to taste nothing until we kill Paul. 15 Now therefore do ye with the council make a representation to the chiliarch so that he may bring him down to you, as about to determine more precisely what concerns him, and we, before he draws near, are ready to kill him. 16 But Paul’s sister’s son, having heard of the lying in wait, came and entered into the fortress and reported it to Paul. 17 And Paul, having called one of the centurions, said, Take this youth to the chiliarch, for he has something to report to him. 18 He therefore, having taken him with him, led him to the chiliarch, and says, The prisoner Paul called me to him and asked me to lead this youth to thee, who has something to say to thee. 19 And the chiliarch having taken him by the hand, and having gone apart in private, inquired, What is it that thou hast to report to me? 20 And he said, The Jews have agreed together to make a request to thee, that thou mayest bring Paul down to-morrow into the council, as about to inquire something more precise concerning him. 21 Do not thou then be persuaded by them, for there lie in wait for him of them more than forty men, who have put themselves under a curse neither to eat nor drink till they kill him; and now they are ready waiting the promise from thee. 22 The chiliarch then dismissed the youth, commanding him, Utter to no one that thou hast represented these things to me. 23 And having called to him certain two of the centurions, he said, Prepare two hundred soldiers that they may go as far as Caesarea, and seventy horsemen, and two hundred light-armed footmen, for the third hour of the night. 24 And he ordered them to provide beasts, that they might set Paul on them and carry him safe through to Felix the governor, 25 having written a letter, couched in this form: 26 Claudius Lysias to the most excellent governor Felix, greeting. 27 This man, having been taken by the Jews, and being about to be killed by them, I came up with the military and took out of their hands, having learned that he was a Roman. 28 And desiring to know the charge on which they accused him, I brought him down to their council; 29 whom I found to be accused of questions of their law, but to have no charge laid against him making him worthy of death or of bonds. 30 But having received information of a plot about to be put in execution against the man by the Jews, I have immediately sent him to thee, commanding also his accusers to say before thee the things that are against him. Farewell. 31 The soldiers therefore, according to what was ordered them, took Paul and brought him by night to Antipatris, 32 and on the morrow, having left the horsemen to go with him, returned to the fortress. 33 And these, having entered into Caesarea, and given up the letter to the governor, presented Paul also to him. 34 And having read it, and asked of what eparchy he was, and learned that he was of Cilicia, 35 he said, I will hear thee fully when thine accusers also are arrived. And he commanded him to be kept in Herod’s praetorium.