Copyright (c) Timothy E. Clontz 1999 All rights reserved.

The Acts of the Apostles

1
  1 In the first book, O Theophilus, I wrote about all that Jesus began to do and to teach, 2 until the day when he was taken up to heaven, after he had given orders through the Holy Spirit to the apostles whom he had chosen. 3 To these he also presented himself alive after his suffering, by many convincing proofs, appearing to them over a period of forty days and speaking of the things concerning the kingdom of God. 4 And while staying with them, he commanded them not to leave Jerusalem, but to wait for what the Father had promised, "Which," he said, "you heard of from me; 5 for John baptized with water, but before many days you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit."
  6 So when they had come together, they asked him, "Lord, are you at this time going to restore the kingdom to Israel?" 7 He said to them, "It is not for you to know times or seasons which the Father has fixed by his own authority. 8 But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be my witnesses both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and even to the ends of the earth." 9 And after he had said this, as they were looking on, he was lifted up, and a cloud took him out of their sight. 10 And as they were gazing intently into the sky while he was going, behold, two men in white clothing stood beside them. 11 They also said, "Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking into the sky? This Jesus, who has been taken up from you into heaven, will come in just the same way as you have watched him go into heaven."
  12 Then they returned to Jerusalem from the mount called Olivet, which is near Jerusalem, a Sabbath day's journey away. 13 And when they had entered, they went up to the upper room, where they were staying; Peter and John and James and Andrew, Philip and Thomas, Bartholomew and Matthew, James the son of Alphaeus and Simon the Zealot and Judas the son of James. 14 All these with one mind devoted themselves to prayer, along with the women and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with his brothers.
  15 In those days Peter stood up among the brethren (the company of persons was in all about a hundred and twenty), and said, 16 "Brethren, the scripture had to be fulfilled, which the Holy Spirit spoke beforehand by the mouth of David, concerning Judas who was guide to those who arrested Jesus. 17 For he was counted among us and received his share in this ministry." 18 (Now this man bought a field with the reward of his wickedness; and falling headlong, he burst open in the middle and all his intestines gushed out. 19 And it became known to all the inhabitants of Jerusalem, so that the field was called in their language Akeldama, that is, Field of Blood.) 20 For it is written in the book of Psalms,
  'Let his homestead be made desolate,
    and let there be no one to dwell in it';
and,
  'let another man take his office.'
21 Therefore it is necessary that of the men who have accompanied us all the time that the Lord Jesus went in and out among us, 22 beginning from the baptism of John until the day when he was taken up from us-one of these men must become with us a witness to his resurrection." 23 So they put forward two men, Joseph called Barsabbas (who was also called Justus), and Matthias. 24 And they prayed and said, "You, Lord, who know the hearts of all men, show which one of these two you have chosen 25 to take the place in this ministry and apostleship from which Judas turned aside, to go to his own place." 26 And they cast lots for them, and the lot fell to Matthias; and he was added to the eleven apostles.

2
  1 When the day of Pentecost had come, they were all together in one place. 2 And suddenly there came from heaven a sound like the rush of a violent wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting. 3 And there appeared to them tongues as of fire distributing themselves, and they rested on each one of them. 4 And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.
  5 Now there were Jews living in Jerusalem, devout men from every nation under heaven. 6 And at this sound the crowd came together, and they were bewildered, because each one heard them speaking in his own language. 7 They were amazed and wondered, saying, "Are not all these who are speaking Galileans? 8 And how is it that we hear them, each of us in his own native language? 9 Parthians and Medes and Elamites, and residents of Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, 10 Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya around Cyrene, and visitors from Rome, both Jews and proselytes, 11 Cretans and Arabs-we hear them in our own tongues speaking of the mighty deeds of God." 12 And they were all amazed and perplexed, saying to one another, "What does this mean?" 13 But others were mocking and said, "They are full of sweet wine."
  14 But Peter, taking his stand with the eleven, raised his voice and addressed them: "Men of Judea and all you who live in Jerusalem, let this be known to you and give heed to my words. 15 For these men are not drunk, as you suppose, since it is only the third hour of the day; 16 but this is what was spoken by the prophet Joel:
17  'And in the last days it shall be, God says,
  that I will pour out my Spirit upon all flesh,
    and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy,
  and your young men shall see visions,
    and your old men shall dream dreams;
18  even on my servants, both men and women,
    I will pour out my Spirit in those days,
      and they shall prophesy.
19  And I will show wonders in heaven above
    and signs on the earth below,
      blood, and fire, and vapor of smoke.
20  The sun will be turned into darkness
    and the moon into blood,
      before the great and glorious day
        of the Lord shall come.
21  And it shall be that everyone
    who calls on the name of the Lord
      will be saved.'
  22 "Men of Israel, listen to these words: Jesus of Nazareth, a man attested to you by God with miracles and wonders and signs which God did through him in your midst, as you yourselves know-23 this man, delivered over by the predetermined plan and foreknowledge of God, you nailed to a cross by the hands of godless men and put him to death. 24 But God raised him up, having loosed the agony of death, because it was impossible for him to be held in its power. 25 For David says concerning him,
  'I saw the Lord always before me;
    for he is at my right hand, so that I will not be shaken.
26  Therefore my heart was glad and my tongue rejoiced;
    moreover my flesh also will live in hope,
27  because you will not abandon my soul to hades,
    nor let your Holy One see decay.
28  You have made known to me the ways of life;
    you will make me full of gladness with your presence.'
  29 "Brethren, I may say to you confidently of the patriarch David that he both died and was buried, and his tomb is with us to this day. 30 And so, because he was a prophet, and knew that God had sworn with an oath to him that he would set one of his descendants on his throne, 31 he looked ahead and spoke of the resurrection of the Christ,
  that he was not abandoned to hades,
    nor did his flesh see decay.
32 This Jesus God raised up again, and of that we are all witnesses. 33 Being therefore exalted at the right hand of God, and having received from the Father the promise of the Holy Spirit, he has poured out this which you see and hear. 34 For David did not ascend into heaven, but he says himself:
  'The Lord said to my Lord,
  "Sit at my right hand,
35    until I make your enemies a footstool
      for your feet."'
36 Therefore let all the house of Israel know for certain that God has made him both Lord and Christ, this Jesus whom you crucified."
  37 Now when they heard this they were cut to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, "Brethren, what shall we do?" 38 And Peter said to them, "Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. 39 For the promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off, for all whom the Lord our God will call to himself." 40 And he testified with many other words and exhorted them, saying, "Save yourselves from this perverse generation." 41 So those who received his word were baptized, and there were added that day about three thousand souls. 42 They devoted themselves to the apostles' teaching and to the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer.
  43 Everyone was filled with awe; and many wonders and signs were done through the apostles. 44 And all who believed were together and had all things in common; 45 and they sold their possessions and goods and distributed them to all, as anyone had need. 46 And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they ate together with glad and sincere hearts, 47 praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to their number day by day those who were being saved.

3
  1 Now Peter and John were going up to the temple at the hour of prayer, the ninth hour. 2 And a man lame from birth was being carried, whom they set down every day at the gate of the temple which is called Beautiful to beg alms of those who entered the temple. 3 When he saw Peter and John about to go into the temple, he asked for alms. 4 And Peter, along with John, directed his gaze at him, and said, "Look at us." 5 And he gave them his attention, expecting to receive something from them. 6 But Peter said, "I do not have silver and gold, but I give you what I have; in the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, walk." 7 And taking him by the right hand, he raised him up; and immediately his feet and ankles were made strong. 8 With a leap he stood upright and began to walk; and he entered the temple with them, walking and leaping and praising God. 9 And all the people saw him walking and praising God, 10 and they recognized him as the one who used to sit at the Beautiful Gate of the temple to beg alms, and they were filled with wonder and amazement at what had happened to him.
  11 While he clung to Peter and John, all the people ran together to them in the porch called Solomon's, astounded. 12 And when Peter saw this he addressed the people, "Men of Israel, why do you wonder at this, or why do you stare at us, as if by our own power or piety we had made him walk? 13 The God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, the God of our fathers, has glorified his servant Jesus, the one whom you delivered and disowned in the presence of Pilate, when he had decided to release him. 14 But you disowned the Holy and Righteous One and asked for a murderer to be granted to you, 15 but killed the Author of life, whom God raised from the dead. To this we are witnesses. 16 And his name, by faith in his name, has made this man strong whom you see and know; and the faith which comes through Jesus has given him perfect health in the presence of you all. 17 And now, brethren, I know that you acted in ignorance, as did also your rulers. 18 But what God foretold by the mouth of all the prophets, that his Christ would suffer, he thus fulfilled. 19 Repent therefore, and turn again, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord, 20 and that he may send the Christ appointed for you, Jesus, 21 whom heaven must receive until the time for establishing all that God spoke by the mouth of his holy prophets from long ago. 22 Moses said, 'The Lord God will raise up for you a prophet like me from your brethren; you shall listen to everything he tells you. 23 And it shall be that every soul that does not listen to that prophet will be destroyed from among the people.' 24 And likewise, all the prophets who have spoken, from Samuel and those who came afterwards, also announced these days. 25 You are the sons of the prophets and of the covenant which God made with your fathers, saying to Abraham, 'And in your seed all the families of the earth shall be blessed.' 26 For you first, God raised up his servant and sent him to bless you by turning every one of you from your wicked ways."

4
  1 And as they were speaking to the people, the priests and the captain of the temple guard and the Sadducees came up to them, 2 being greatly disturbed because they were teaching the people and proclaiming in Jesus the resurrection from the dead. 3 And they seized them and put them in jail until the next day, for it was already evening. 4 But many of those who heard the message believed; and the number of the men came to about five thousand.
  5 On the next day, their rulers and elders and scribes were gathered together in Jerusalem; 6 and Annas the high priest was there, and Caiaphas and John and Alexander, and all who were of the high-priestly family. 7 And when they had set them in the midst, they began to inquire, "By what power or by what name did you do this?" 8 Then Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, said to them, "Rulers of the people and elders, 9 if we are being examined today for a good deed done to a cripple, as to how this man has been healed, 10 be it known to you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified, whom God raised from the dead, by him this man stands before you healed. 11 He is
  the stone which was rejected by you, the builders,
    but which has become the chief cornerstone.
12 And there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved." 13 Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were uneducated, common men, they were astonished; and they recognized that they had been with Jesus. 14 And seeing the man who had been healed standing with them, they had nothing to say in reply. 15 But when they had ordered them to leave the Council, they conferred with one another, 16 saying, "What shall we do with these men? For that a noteworthy miracle has been performed through them is apparent to all the inhabitants of Jerusalem, and we cannot deny it. 17 But in order that it may spread no further among the people, let us warn them to speak no longer to any one in this name." 18 Then they called them in again and commanded them not to speak or teach at all in the name of Jesus. 19 But Peter and John answered them, "Whether it is right in the sight of God to listen to you rather than to God, you must judge; 20 for we cannot stop speaking about what we have seen and heard." 21 And when they had further threatened them, they let them go, finding no way to punish them, because of the people; for all the people were praising God for what had happened. 22 For the man on whom this sign of healing was performed was more than forty years old.
  23 When they had been released, they went to their own companions and reported all that the chief priests and the elders had said to them. 24 And when they heard this, they lifted their voices to God together and said, "Sovereign Lord, it is you who made the heaven and the earth and the sea, and everything in them, 25 who by the Holy Spirit, through the mouth of our father David your servant, said,
  'Why did the gentiles rage,
    and the peoples plot futile things?
26  The kings of the earth took their stand,
    and the rulers were gathered together
      against the Lord and against his Christ.'
27 For truly in this city there were gathered together against your holy servant Jesus, whom you anointed, both Herod and Pontius Pilate, along with the Gentiles and the peoples of Israel, 28 to do whatever your hand and your plan had predestined to take place. 29 And now, Lord, look upon their threats, and grant to your servants to speak your word with all boldness, 30 while you stretch out your hand to heal, and signs and wonders take place through the name of your holy servant Jesus." 31 And when they had prayed, the place where they were gathered together was shaken; and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke the word of God with boldness.
  32 Now the company of those who believed were of one heart and soul, and no one claimed that any of the things which he possessed was his own, but they had everything in common. 33 And with great power the apostles gave their testimony to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, and great grace was upon them all. 34 For there was not a needy person among them, For all who were owners of land or houses sold them and brought the proceeds of the sales 35 and laid it at the apostles' feet, and it was distributed to each as any had need. 36 Thus Joseph who was called by the apostles Barnabas (which means, Son of Encouragement) , a Levite, a native of Cyprus, 37 sold a field which he owned, and brought the money and laid it at the apostles' feet.

5
  1 But a man named Ananias, with his wife Sapphira, sold a piece of property, 2 and with his wife's full knowledge he kept back some of the money for himself, and brought only a part and laid it at the apostles' feet. 3 But Peter said, "Ananias, why has Satan filled your heart to lie to the Holy Spirit and to keep back some of the price of the land? 4 While it remained unsold, did it not remain your own? And after it was sold, was it not at your disposal? How is it that you have conceived this deed in your heart? You have not lied to men but to God." 5 When Ananias heard these words, he fell down and died. And great fear came upon all who heard of it. 6 The young men arose and wrapped him up, carried him out, and buried him. 7 After an interval of about three hours his wife came in, not knowing what had happened. 8 Peter said to her, "Tell me whether you sold the land for such and such a price." And she said, "Yes, that was the price." 9 Then Peter said to her, "How is it that you have agreed together to test the Spirit of the Lord? Look, the feet of those who have buried your husband are at the door, and they will carry you out." 10 Immediately she fell down at his feet and died. When the young men came in they found her dead, and they carried her out and buried her beside her husband. 11 And great fear came upon the whole church, and upon all who heard of these things.
  12 Now many signs and wonders were done among the people by the hands of the apostles. And they were all together in Solomon's Porch. 13 None of the rest dared join them, but the people held them in high honor. 14 And all the more believers in the Lord, multitudes of men and women, were constantly added to their number, 15 so that they even carried out the sick into the streets, and laid them on beds and pallets, so that as Peter came by at least his shadow might fall on some of them. 16 The people also gathered from the towns around Jerusalem, bringing the sick and those afflicted with unclean spirits, and they were all healed.
  17 But the high priest rose up and all who were with him, that is, the party of the Sadducees, and they were filled with jealousy. 18 They arrested the apostles and put them in the public jail. 19 But during the night an angel of the Lord opened the doors of the prison, and brought them out, and said, 20 "Go, stand and speak to the people in the temple the whole message of this Life." 21 And when they heard this, they entered into the temple about daybreak and began to teach. Now when the high priest and his associates came, they called the Council together, even all the Senate of the sons of Israel, and sent orders to the prison house for them to be brought. 22 But when the officers came, they did not find them in the prison, and they returned and reported back, 23 "We found the prison securely locked, and the guards standing at the doors; but when we opened them, we found no one inside." 24 Now when the captain of the temple guard and the chief priests heard these words, they were much perplexed about them, wondering what would come of this. 25 And someone came and told them, "Look! The men whom you put in prison are standing in the temple and teaching the people." 26 Then the captain went along with the officers and brought them back without violence, for they were afraid of the people, that they might be stoned.
  27 When they had brought them, they set them before the council. The high priest questioned them, 28 saying, "We gave you strict orders not to teach in this name, and yet, you have filled Jerusalem with your teaching and intend to bring this man's blood upon us." 29 But Peter and the apostles answered, "We must obey God rather than men. 30 The God of our fathers raised Jesus-whom you had killed by hanging him on a tree. 31 God exalted him to his own right hand as Prince and Savior, to give repentance and forgiveness of sins to Israel. 32 We are witnesses of these things, and so is the Holy Spirit, whom God has given to those who obey him."
  33 When they heard this, they were furious and wanted to kill them. 34 But a Pharisee in the council named Gamaliel, a teacher of the law, held in honor by all the people, stood up and ordered the men to be put outside for a while. 35 And he said to them, "Men of Israel, take care what you propose to do with these men. 36 For some time ago Theudas rose up, claiming to be somebody, and a group of about four hundred men joined him. But he was killed, and all who followed him were dispersed and came to nothing. 37 After this man, Judas the Galilean rose up in the days of the census and drew away some people after him; he too perished, and all those who followed him were scattered. 38 So in the present case I tell you, keep away from these men and let them alone, for if this plan or action is of men, it will fail; 39 but if it is of God, you will not be able to overthrow them; or else you may even be found fighting against God." 40 So they took his advice, and they called the apostles in and had them flogged. Then they ordered them not to speak in the name of Jesus, and let them go. 41 Then they left the presence of the council, rejoicing that they had been counted worthy to suffer dishonor for the name. 42 And every day, in the temple and from house to house, they never stopped teaching and preaching Jesus as the Christ.

6
  1 Now in those days when the number of disciples was increasing, the Hellenistic Jews among them complained against the native Hebrews because their widows were being overlooked in the daily distribution of food. 2 So the twelve summoned the congregation of the disciples and said, "It is not right for us to neglect the word of God in order to serve tables. 3 Therefore, brethren, pick out from among you seven men of good reputation, full of the Spirit and of wisdom, whom we may appoint to this duty. 4 But we will devote ourselves to prayer and to the ministry of the word." 5 And the statement pleased the whole congregation; and they chose Stephen, a man full of faith and of the Holy Spirit, and Philip, Prochorus, Nicanor, Timon, Parmenas and Nicolas, a proselyte from Antioch. 6 These they set before the apostles, and they prayed and laid their hands on them.
  7 The word of God increased; and the number of the disciples multiplied greatly in Jerusalem, and a great many of the priests were obedient to the faith.
  8 And Stephen, full of grace and power, did great wonders and signs among the people. 9 Then some of those who belonged to the synagogue of the Freedmen (as it was called), and of the Cyrenians, and of the Alexandrians, and of those from Cilicia and Asia, arose and disputed with Stephen. 10 But they could not stand against the wisdom and the Spirit with which he spoke. 11 Then they secretly induced men to say, "We have heard him speak blasphemous words against Moses and against God." 12 They stirred up the people and the elders and the scribes, and they came on him and seized him, and brought him before the council. 13 They put forward false witnesses who said, "This man never stops speaking against this holy place, and the law; 14 for we have heard him say that this Jesus of Nazareth will destroy this place, and will change the customs which Moses handed down to us." 15 And fixing their gaze on him, all who were sitting in the Council saw that his face was like the face of an angel.

7
  1 The high priest said, "Are these things so?" 2 And he said: "Hear me, brethren and fathers! The God of glory appeared to our father Abraham when he was in Mesopotamia, before he lived in Haran, 3 and said to him, 'Leave your country and your relatives, and go into the land that I will show you.' 4 Then he left the land of the Chaldeans and settled in Haran. From there, after his father died, God had him move to this country in which you are now living. 5 But He gave him no inheritance in it, not even a foot of ground, and yet, even though he had no child, he promised that he would give it to him as a possession, and to his descendants after him. 6 But God spoke to this effect, that his descendants would be aliens in a foreign land, and that they would be enslaved and mistreated for four hundred years. 7 'But I will judge the nation which they serve,' said God, 'and after that they will come out and worship me in this place.' 8 And he gave him the covenant of circumcision. And so Abraham became the father of Isaac, and circumcised him on the eighth day; and Isaac became the father of Jacob, and Jacob of the twelve patriarchs.
  9 "And the patriarchs, jealous of Joseph, sold him into Egypt. But God was with him, 10 and rescued him from all his afflictions, and gave him favor and wisdom in the sight of Pharaoh, king of Egypt, and he made him governor over Egypt and all his household. 11 Now there came a famine throughout all Egypt and Canaan, and great affliction, and our fathers could find no food. 12 But when Jacob heard that there was grain in Egypt, he sent our fathers there the first time. 13 At the second visit Joseph made himself known to his brothers, and Joseph's family was made known to Pharaoh. 14 Then Joseph sent and called his father Jacob and all his relatives to him, seventy-five persons in all. 15 And Jacob went down to Egypt, and there he and our fathers died. 16 They were carried back to Shechem and laid in the tomb that Abraham had bought for a sum of money from the sons of Hamor in Shechem.
  17 "But as the time of the promise drew near, which God had granted to Abraham, the people increased and multiplied in Egypt 18 until there arose another king over Egypt who knew nothing about Joseph. 19 He dealt craftily with our race and forced our fathers to expose their infants, so that they would not survive. 20 At this time Moses was born, and was beautiful before God. And he was brought up for three months in his father's house; 21 and when he was placed outside, Pharaoh's daughter took him and brought him up as her own son. 22 Moses was educated in all the wisdom of the Egyptians, and he was mighty in his words and deeds.
  23 "When he was forty years old, it came into his heart to visit his brethren, the sons of Israel. 24 And when he saw one of them being treated unjustly, he defended him and avenged the oppressed by striking down the Egyptian. 25 And he supposed that his brethren understood that God was granting them deliverance through him, but they did not understand. 26 On the following day he appeared to two of them as they were fighting, and tried to reconcile them, saying, 'Men, you are brethren; why do you wrong each other?' 27 But the man who was wronging his neighbor pushed him aside, saying, 'Who made you a ruler and a judge over us? 28 Do you want to kill me as you killed the Egyptian yesterday?' 29 At this remark Moses fled, and became an exile in the land of Midian, where he became the father of two sons.
  30 "After forty years had passed, an angel appeared to him in the wilderness of Mount Sinai, in the flame of a burning bush. 31 When Moses saw it, he was amazed at the sight; and as he approached to look more closely, there came the voice of the Lord: 32 'I am the God of your fathers, the God of Abraham and Isaac and Jacob.' Moses trembled with fear and did not dare to look. 33 And the Lord said to him, 'Take off the sandals from your feet, for the place where you are standing is holy ground. 34 I have certainly seen the oppression of my people in Egypt and have heard their groaning, and I have come down to rescue them. Come now, and I will send you to Egypt.' 35 This Moses whom they rejected, saying, 'Who made you a ruler and a judge?' is the one God sent to be both a ruler and a deliverer by the hand of the angel who appeared to him in the bush. 36 This man led them out, performing wonders and signs in the land of Egypt and in the Red Sea and in the wilderness for forty years. 37 This is the Moses who said to the Israelites, 'God will raise up for you a prophet like me from your brethren.' 38 This is he who was in the congregation in the wilderness with the angel who spoke to him at Mount Sinai, and with our fathers; and he received living oracles to pass on to us. 39 But our fathers refused to obey him. Instead, they rejected him and in their hearts turned back to Egypt, 40 saying to Aaron, 'Make for us gods who will go before us; as for this Moses who led us out from the land of Egypt-we do not know what has happened to him.' 41 At that time they made a calf and brought a sacrifice to the idol, and were rejoicing in the works of their hands. 42 But God turned away and gave them over to worship the host of heaven, as it is written in the book of the prophets:
  'Did you offer to me slain beasts and sacrifices,
    forty years in the wilderness, O house of Israel?
43  You took up the tent of Moloch,
    and the star of the god Rephan,
      the figures which you made to worship.
  And I will remove you beyond Babylon.'
  44 "Our fathers had the tabernacle of testimony in the wilderness, just as he who spoke to Moses directed him to make it according to the pattern which he had seen. 45 And having received it in their turn, our fathers brought it in with Joshua when they took the land from the nations whom God drove out before our fathers. So it was until the time of David, 46 who found favor in God's sight, and asked that he might find a dwelling place for the God of Jacob. 47 But it was Solomon who built a house for him. 48 However, the Most High does not dwell in houses made by human hands; as the prophet says:
49  'Heaven is my throne,
    and the earth is my footstool.
  What kind of house will you build for me? says the Lord,
    or what is the place of my rest?
50  Has not my hand made all these things?'
  51 "You stiff-necked people, uncircumcised in heart and ears, you always resist the Holy Spirit. You are doing just as your fathers did. 52 Which of the prophets did not your fathers persecute? And they killed those who announced beforehand the coming of the Righteous One, whom you have now betrayed and murdered, 53 you who received the law as delivered by angels, and yet did not keep it."
  54 Now when they heard this they were cut to the heart, and they gnashed their teeth at him. 55 But being full of the Holy Spirit, he gazed intently into heaven and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing at the right hand of God; 56 and he said, "Behold, I see the heavens opened, and the Son of Man standing at the right hand of God." 57 But they cried out with a loud voice, and covered their ears and rushed together upon him with. 58 Then they cast him out of the city and began to stone him; and the witnesses laid down their garments at the feet of a young man named Saul. 59 And as they were stoning Stephen, he prayed, "Lord Jesus, receive my spirit." 60 Then he fell on his knees and cried out with a loud voice, "Lord, do not hold this sin against them." And when he had said this, he fell asleep. 1 Saul was consenting to his death.

8
  And on that day a great persecution arose against the church in Jerusalem, and they were all scattered throughout the region of Judea and Samaria, except the apostles. 2 Devout men buried Stephen, and made great lamentation over him. 3 But Saul began ravaging the church, and, entering house after house, he dragged off men and women and put them in prison.
  4 Now those who had been scattered went about preaching the word. 5 Philip went down to a city of Samaria and proclaimed Christ to them. 6 The crowds with one accord were giving attention to what was said by Philip, when they heard and saw the signs which he did. 7 For unclean spirits, crying with a loud voice, came out of many who were possessed; and many who were paralyzed and lame were healed. 8 So there was much joy in that city.
  9 Now there was a man named Simon, who had formerly practiced magic in the city and amazed all the people of Samaria. He boasted that he was someone great, 10 and they all, from the least to the greatest, gave attention to him, saying, "This man is what is called the Great Power of God." 11 And they gave heed to him, because for a long time he had amazed them with his magic. 12 But when they believed Philip as he preached good news about the kingdom of God and the name of Jesus Christ, they were baptized, both men and women. 13 Even Simon himself believed, and after being baptized he continued with Philip. And seeing signs and great miracles performed, he was amazed.
  14 Now when the apostles in Jerusalem heard that Samaria had received the word of God, they sent them Peter and John, 15 who came down and prayed for them that they might receive the Holy Spirit. 16 For he had not yet fallen upon any of them; they had simply been baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. 17 Then they laid their hands on them, and they received the Holy Spirit. 18 Now when Simon saw that the Spirit was given through the laying on of the apostles' hands, he offered them money, 19 saying, "Give me also this power, so that everyone on whom I lay my hands may receive the Holy Spirit." 20 But Peter said to him, "May your silver perish with you, because you thought you could obtain the gift of God with money! 21 You have no part or share in this matter, for your heart is not right before God. 22 Repent therefore of this wickedness of yours, and pray to the Lord that, if possible, the intent of your heart may be forgiven you. 23 For I see that you are in the gall of bitterness and in the bond of iniquity." 24 And Simon answered, "Pray for me to the Lord, so that nothing of what you have said may come upon me."
  25 Now when they had testified and spoken the word of the Lord, they returned to Jerusalem, preaching the gospel to many villages of the Samaritans.
  26 But an angel of the Lord said to Philip, "Get up and go toward the south to the road that goes down from Jerusalem to Gaza." This is a desert road. 27 So he got up and went. And there was an Ethiopian eunuch, a court official of Candace, queen of the Ethiopians, who was in charge of all her treasure; and he had come to Jerusalem to worship, 28 and he was returning and sitting in his chariot, and was reading the prophet Isaiah. 29 And the Spirit said to Philip, "Go up and join this chariot." 30 So Philip ran up to him, and heard him reading Isaiah the prophet, and asked, "Do you understand what you are reading?" 31 And he said, "How can I, unless someone guides me?" And he invited Philip to come up and sit with him. 32 Now the passage of Scripture which he was reading was this:
  "He was led as a sheep to slaughter;
    and as a lamb before its shearer is silent,
      so he does not open his mouth.
33  In his humiliation justice was denied him.
    Who can describe his generation?
      For his life is taken up from the earth."
  34 And the eunuch said to Philip, "Please tell me, of whom does the prophet say this, about himself or about someone else?" 35 Then Philip opened his mouth, and beginning with this scripture he told him the good news of Jesus. 36 And as they went along the road they came to some water; and the eunuch said, "Look, here is water! What prevents me from being baptized?" 38 And he commanded the chariot to stop, and they both went down into the water, Philip and the eunuch, and he baptized him. 39 And when they came up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord snatched Philip away; and the eunuch saw him no more, but went on his way rejoicing. 40 But Philip found himself at Azotus, and as he passed through he kept preaching the gospel to all the towns until he came to Caesarea.

9
  1 Now Saul, still breathing threats and murder against the disciples of the Lord, went to the high priest, 2 and asked for letters from him to the synagogues at Damascus, so that if he found any belonging to the Way, both men and women, he might bring them bound to Jerusalem. 3 Now as he journeyed he approached Damascus, and suddenly a light from heaven flashed around him. 4 And he fell to the ground and heard a voice saying to him, "Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me?" 5 And he said, "Who are you, Lord?" And he said, "I am Jesus whom you are persecuting, 6 but get up and enter the city, and it will be told you what you must do." 7 The men who were traveling with him stood speechless, hearing the voice but seeing no one. 8 Saul got up from the ground; and when his eyes were opened, he could see nothing; so they led him by the hand and brought him into Damascus. 9 And for three days he was without sight, and neither ate nor drank.
  10 Now there was a disciple at Damascus named Ananias; and the Lord said to him in a vision, "Ananias." And he said, "Here I am, Lord." 11 And the Lord said to him, "Get up and go to the street called Straight, and inquire at the house of Judas for a man from Tarsus named Saul, for he is praying, 12 and in a vision he has seen a man named Ananias come in and lay his hands on him so that he might regain his sight." 13 But Ananias answered, "Lord, I have heard from many about this man, how much harm he has done to your saints at Jerusalem; 14 and here he has authority from the chief priests to bind all who call on your name." 15 But the Lord said to him, "Go, for he is a chosen instrument of mine to carry my name before the Gentiles and kings and the sons of Israel; 16 for I will show him how much he must suffer for the sake of my name." 17 So Ananias departed and entered the house. And after laying his hands on him said, "Brother Saul, the Lord Jesus, who appeared to you on the road by which you were coming, has sent me so that you may regain your sight and be filled with the Holy Spirit." 18 And immediately there fell from his eyes something like scales, and he regained his sight. And he got up and was baptized, 19 and he took food and was strengthened.
  Now for several days he was with the disciples who were at Damascus. 20 And immediately he began to proclaim Jesus in the synagogues, saying, "He is the Son of God." 21 All those who heard him were amazed, and said, "Is this not he who made havoc in Jerusalem of those who called on this name, and who had come here for the purpose of bringing them bound before the chief priests?" 22 But Saul increased all the more in strength, and confounded the Jews who lived at Damascus by proving that this Jesus is the Christ.
  23 When many days had passed, the Jews plotted to kill him, 24 but their plot became known to Saul. They were watching the gates day and night, to kill him; 25 but his disciples took him by night and let him down through an opening in the wall, lowering him in a basket.
  26 When he came to Jerusalem, he tried to join the disciples; but they were all afraid of him, not believing that he was a disciple. 27 But Barnabas took him and brought him to the apostles. And he declared to them how he had seen the Lord on the road, and that he had spoken to him, and how he had preached boldly at Damascus in the name of Jesus. 28 And he was with them moving about freely in Jerusalem, speaking out boldly in the name of the Lord. 29 And he was talking and arguing with the Hellenistic Jews; but they were seeking to kill him. 30 But when the brethren learned of it, they brought him down to Caesarea and sent him off to Tarsus.
  31 So the church throughout all Judea and Galilee and Samaria enjoyed peace and was built up; and going on in the fear of the Lord and in the comfort of the Holy Spirit, it continued to increase.
  32 Now as Peter went through all those regions, he came down also to the saints who lived at Lydda. 33 There he found a man named Aeneas, who had been bedridden for eight years and was paralyzed. 34 Peter said to him, "Aeneas, Jesus Christ heals you; get up and make your bed." Immediately he got up. 35 And all who lived at Lydda and Sharon saw him, and they turned to the Lord.
  36 Now there was at Joppa a certain disciple named Tabitha (which is translated Dorcas). She was full of good works and acts of charity. 37 And at that time she fell sick and died; and when they had washed her, they laid her body in an upper room. 38 Since Lydda was near Joppa, the disciples, having heard that Peter was there, sent two men to him, imploring him, "Please come to us without delay." 39 So Peter rose and went with them. And when he arrived, they took him to the upper room. All the widows stood beside him, weeping and showing the tunics and other garments that Dorcas made while she was with them. 40 But Peter sent them all out and knelt down and prayed; then turning to the body, he said, "Tabitha, arise." And she opened her eyes, and when she saw Peter, she sat up. 41 And he gave her his hand and raised her up. Then calling the saints and widows he presented her alive. 42 It became known all over Joppa, and many believed in the Lord. 43 And Peter stayed for many days in Joppa with a tanner named Simon.

10
  1 At Caesarea there was a man named Cornelius, a centurion of what was known as the Italian Cohort, 2 a devout man and one who feared God with all his household, and gave alms generously to the people and prayed to God continually. 3 About the ninth hour of the day he clearly saw in a vision an angel of God who had just come in and said to him, "Cornelius!" 4 And he stared at him in terror, and said, "What is it, Lord?" And he said to him, "Your prayers and alms have ascended as a memorial before God. 5 Now send men to Joppa, and bring a man named Simon who is called Peter; 6 he is staying with a tanner named Simon, whose house is by the sea." 7 When the angel who spoke to him had left, he called two of his servants and a devout soldier of those who were his personal attendants, 8 and after he had explained everything to them, he sent them to Joppa.
  9 The next day, as they were on their journey and approaching the city, Peter went up on the housetop about the sixth hour to pray. 10 And he became hungry and was desiring something to eat; but while they were preparing it, he fell into a trance 11 and he saw heaven opened, and something descending, like a great sheet, let down by four corners to the earth. 12 In it were all kinds of four-footed animals and reptiles of the earth and birds of the air. 13 A voice came to him, "Get up, Peter. Kill and eat!" 14 But Peter said, "No, Lord; for I have never eaten anything that is common or unclean." 15 And the voice came to him again a second time, "What God has cleansed, you must not call common." 16 This happened three times, and immediately the thing was taken up to heaven.
  17 Now while Peter was inwardly perplexed as to what the vision which he had seen might mean, behold, the men that were sent by Cornelius, having made inquiry for Simon's house, appeared at the gate. 18 They called out, asking whether Simon who was known as Peter was staying there. 19 While Peter was reflecting on the vision, the Spirit said to him, "Behold, three men are looking for you. 20 But get up, go downstairs and accompany them without hesitation, for I have sent them myself." 21 Peter went down to the men and said, "Behold, I am the one you are looking for; what is the reason you have come?" 22 They said, "Cornelius, a centurion, a righteous and God-fearing man, who is well spoken of by the whole Jewish nation, was directed by a holy angel to send for you to come to his house, and to hear what you have to say." 23 So he invited them in to be his guests.
  The next day he rose and went off with them, and some of the brethren from Joppa accompanied him. 24 On the following day he entered Caesarea. Now Cornelius was expecting them and had called together his relatives and close friends. 25 When Peter entered, Cornelius met him and fell down at his feet and worshipped him. 26 But Peter raised him up, saying, "Stand up; I too am just a man." 27 As he talked with him, he went in and found many people assembled. 28 And he said to them, "You yourselves know how unlawful it is for a Jew to associate with a foreigner or to visit him; but God has shown me that I should not call any man common or unclean. 29 So when I was sent for, I came without raising any objection. I ask then why you sent for me." 30 Cornelius said, "Four days ago to this hour, I was praying in my house during the ninth hour; and behold, a man stood before me in shining garments, 31 and he said, 'Cornelius, your prayer has been heard and your alms have been remembered before God. 32 Send therefore to Joppa and ask for Simon who is called Peter; he is lodging in the house of Simon, a tanner, by the sea.' 33 So I sent for you immediately, and you have been kind enough to come. Now therefore we are all here present in the sight of God, to hear all that you have been commanded by the Lord."
  34 And opening his mouth, Peter said: "I most certainly understand now that God is not one to show partiality, 35 but in every nation the man who fears him and does what is right is welcome to him. 36 You know the word which he sent to Israel, preaching good news of peace through Jesus Christ (he is Lord of all). 37 You know what has happened throughout all Judea, beginning from Galilee after the baptism which John preached: 38 how God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power, and how he went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with him. 39 We are witnesses of all that he did both in the country of the Jews and in Jerusalem. They put him to death by hanging him on a tree; 40 but God raised him up on the third day and caused him to be seen, 41 not to all the people but to us who were chosen by God as witnesses, who ate and drank with him after he rose from the dead. 42 And he commanded us to preach to the people, and to testify that he is the one appointed by God to be judge of the living and the dead. 43 Of him all the prophets bear witness that everyone who believes in him receives forgiveness of sins through his name."
  44 While Peter was still speaking these words, the Holy Spirit fell on all who heard the message. 45 All the circumcised believers who came with Peter were amazed, because the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out even on the Gentiles. 46 For they heard them speaking in tongues and praising God. Then Peter said, 47 "Can anyone refuse the water for these people to be baptized who have received the Holy Spirit just as we have?" 48 And he ordered them to be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ. Then they asked him to stay on for a few days.

11
  1 Now the apostles and the brethren who were throughout Judea heard that the Gentiles also had received the word of God. 2 So when Peter went up to Jerusalem, the circumcised believers criticized him, 3 saying, "You went to uncircumcised men and ate with them." 4 But Peter began and explained to them in order: 5 "I was in the city of Joppa praying; and in a trance I saw a vision, something descending like a great sheet, let down from heaven by four corners; and it came down to me. 6 And when I looked into it I saw four-footed animals of the earth, wild beasts, reptiles, and birds of the air. 7 Then I heard a voice saying to me, 'Get up, Peter. Kill and eat!' 8 But I said, 'No, Lord; for nothing common or unclean has ever entered my mouth.' 9 But the voice answered a second time from heaven, 'What God has cleansed you must not call common.' 10 This happened three times, and all was drawn up again into heaven. 11 And behold, at that moment three men appeared at the house in which we were staying, having been sent to me from Caesarea. 12 The Spirit told me to go with them with no hesitation. These six brethren also went with me, and we entered the man's house. 13 And he told us how he had seen the angel standing in his house and saying, 'Send to Joppa and bring Simon, who is also called Peter; 14 he will declare to you a message by which you will be saved, you and all your household.' 15 As I began to speak, the Holy Spirit fell on them just as on us at the beginning. 16 And I remembered the word of the Lord, how he said, 'John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.' 17 So if God gave them the same gift as he gave us, who believed in the Lord Jesus Christ, who was I that I could oppose God?" 18 When they heard this, they quieted down and glorified God, saying, "So then, God has granted to the Gentiles also the repentance unto life."
  19 Now those who were scattered because of the persecution that arose in connection with Stephen traveled as far as Phoenicia and Cyprus and Antioch, speaking the word to no one except Jews. 20 But there were some of them, men of Cyprus and Cyrene, who came to Antioch and began speaking to the Greeks also, preaching the Lord Jesus. 21 The hand of the Lord was with them, and a great number believed and turned to the Lord. 22 News of this reached the ears of the church at Jerusalem, and they sent Barnabas to Antioch. 23 When he arrived and saw the grace of God, he was glad and encouraged them all to remain true to the Lord with all their hearts; 24 for he was a good man, full of the Holy Spirit and of faith. And a great number of people were brought to the Lord. 25 So Barnabas went to Tarsus to look for Saul; 26 and when he had found him, he brought him to Antioch. So for a whole year they met with the church and taught great numbers of people; and the disciples were called Christians first in Antioch.
  27 Now at this time some prophets came down from Jerusalem to Antioch. 28 One of them named Agabus stood up and foretold by the Spirit that there would be a great famine all over the world. And this took place in the reign of Claudius. 29 And the disciples determined, each according to his ability, to send relief for the brethren living in Judea. 30 And this they did, sending it to the elders by Barnabas and Saul.

12
  1 Now about that time Herod the king laid hands on some who belonged to the church in order to persecute them. 2 He had James the brother of John put to death with the sword. 3 When he saw that it pleased the Jews, he proceeded to arrest Peter also. This was during the days of Unleavened Bread. 4 When he had seized him, he put him in prison, and delivered him to four squads of soldiers to guard him, intending after the Passover to bring him out to the people. 5 So Peter was kept in prison, but earnest prayer for him was made to God by the church.
  6 The very night when Herod was about to bring him out, Peter was sleeping between two soldiers, bound with two chains, and sentries before the door were guarding the prison. 7 And behold, an angel of the Lord suddenly appeared, and a light shone in the cell; and he struck Peter's side and woke him up, saying, "Get up quickly." And the chains fell off his hands. 8 And the angel said to him, "Dress yourself and put on your sandals." And he did so. And he said to him, "Wrap your cloak around you and follow me." 9 So he went out and followed him; and he did not know that what was done by the angel was real, but thought he was seeing a vision. 10 When they had passed the first and the second guard, they came to the iron gate leading into the city. It opened for them by itself, and they went out and passed on through one street; and immediately the angel left him. 11 When Peter came to himself, he said, "Now I know for sure that the Lord has sent his angel and rescued me from the hand of Herod and from all that the Jewish people were expecting." 12 When he realized this, he went to the house of Mary, the mother of John who was also called Mark, where many were gathered together and were praying. 13 And when he knocked at the door of the gate, a servant-girl named Rhoda came to answer. 14 When she recognized Peter's voice, in her joy she did not open the gate, but ran in and announced that Peter was standing in front of the gate. 15 They said to her, "You are out of your mind!" But she kept insisting that it was so. They said, "It is his angel." 16 But Peter continued knocking; and when they opened the door, they saw him and were amazed. 17 But motioning to them with his hand to be silent, he described to them how the Lord had brought him out of the prison. And he said, "Tell this to James and to the brethren." Then he left and went to another place.
  18 Now when day came, there was no small disturbance among the soldiers as to what had become of Peter. 19 When Herod had searched for him and could not find him, he examined the guards and ordered that they be put to death. Then he went down from Judea to Caesarea and stayed there a while.
  20 Now he was angry with the people of Tyre and Sidon; and they came to him in a body, and having persuaded Blastus, the king's chamberlain, they asked for peace, because their country depended on the king's country for food. 21 On an appointed day Herod put on his royal robes, took his seat upon the throne, and made an address to them. 22 And the people shouted, "The voice of a god and not of a man!" 23 Immediately an angel of the Lord struck him because he did not give God the glory, and he was eaten by worms and died.
  24 But the word of God continued to grow and to be multiplied. 25 And Barnabas and Saul returned from Jerusalem when they had fulfilled their mission, taking along with them John, who was also called Mark.

13
  1 Now in the church that was at Antioch there were prophets and teachers: Barnabas, Simeon who was called Niger, Lucius of Cyrene, Manaen who had been brought up with Herod the tetrarch, and Saul. 2 While they were worshipping the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said, "Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them." 3 Then after they had fasted and prayed, they laid their hands on them and sent them off.
  4 So, being sent out by the Holy Spirit, they went down to Seleucia and from there they sailed to Cyprus. 5 When they arrived at Salamis, they proclaimed the word of God in the synagogues of the Jews. And they had John as their helper. 6 When they had gone through the whole island as far as Paphos, they came upon a certain magician, a Jewish false prophet, named Bar-Jesus, 7 who was with the proconsul, Sergius Paulus, a man of intelligence. This man summoned Barnabas and Saul and sought to hear the word of God. 8 But Elymas the magician (for that is the meaning of his name) was opposing them, seeking to turn the proconsul away from the faith. 9 But Saul, who was also called Paul, filled with the Holy Spirit, looked intently at him 10 and said, "You who are full of all deceit and fraud, you son of the devil, you enemy of all righteousness, will you not stop making crooked the straight ways of the Lord? 11 Now, behold, the hand of the Lord is upon you, and you will be blind and unable to see the sun for a time." And immediately a mist and a darkness fell upon him, and he went about seeking someone to lead him by the hand. 12 Then the proconsul believed, when he saw what had happened, for he was amazed at the teaching of the Lord.
  13 Now Paul and his companions put out to sea from Paphos and came to Perga in Pamphylia; but John left them and returned to Jerusalem. 14 But they passed on from Perga and came to Pisidian Antioch. And on the Sabbath day they went into the synagogue and sat down. 15 After the reading of the law and the prophets, the rulers of the synagogue sent to them, saying, "Brethren, if you have any word of exhortation for the people, say it." 16 Paul stood up, and motioning with his hand said,
  "Men of Israel, and you who fear God, listen: 17 the God of this people Israel chose our fathers and made the people great during their stay in the land of Egypt, and with uplifted arm he led them out of it. 18 For about forty years he put up with them in the wilderness. 19 When he had destroyed seven nations in the land of Canaan, he gave them their land as an inheritance, for about four hundred and fifty years. 20 After these things he gave them judges until Samuel the prophet. 21 Then they asked for a king, and God gave them Saul the son of Kish, a man of the tribe of Benjamin, for forty years. 22 And after he had removed him, he raised up David to be their king; concerning whom he testified and said, 'I have found in David the son of Jesse a man after my heart, who will do all my will.' 23 From this man's descendants God has brought to Israel a Savior, Jesus, as he promised. 24 Before his coming John had preached a baptism of repentance to all the people of Israel. 25 And as John was completing his course, he said, 'What do you suppose that I am? I am not he. No, but after me one is coming, the sandals of whose feet I am not worthy to untie.'
  26 "Brethren, sons of the family of Abraham, and those among you that fear God, to us has been sent the message of this salvation. 27 For those who live in Jerusalem and their rulers, because they did not recognize him nor the utterances of the prophets which are read every Sabbath, fulfilled these by condemning him. 28 Though they found no ground for a death sentence, they asked Pilate to have him executed. 29 When they had carried out all that was written about him, they took him down from the tree and laid him in a tomb. 30 But God raised him from the dead; 31 and for many days he appeared to those who came up with him from Galilee to Jerusalem, who are now his witnesses to the people. 32 And we preach to you the good news that what God promised to the fathers, 33 he has fulfilled for us, their children, by raising up Jesus. As it is also written in the second Psalm:
  'You are my Son;
    today I have begotten you.'
34 As for the fact that he raised him from the dead, no more to return to decay, he spoke in this way:
  'I will give you the holy and sure blessings of David.' 35 Therefore he also says in another Psalm,
  'You will not let your Holy One see decay.' 36 For David, after he had served the purpose of God in his own generation, fell asleep, and was laid with his fathers and saw decay; 37 but he whom God raised did not see decay. 38 Therefore let it be known to you, brethren, that through him forgiveness of sins is proclaimed to you, 39 and through him everyone who believes is freed from everything from which you could not be freed by the law of Moses. 40 Therefore take care, so that what is said in the prophets may not come upon you:
41  'Behold, you scoffers,
    and wonder, and perish;
  for I am going to do a deed in your days,
    a deed you will never believe,
      if someone declares it to you.'"
  42 As Paul and Barnabas were going out, the people begged that these things might be spoken to them the next Sabbath. 43 When the meeting of the synagogue broke up, many Jews and devout converts to Judaism followed Paul and Barnabas, who spoke to them and urged them to continue in the grace of God.
  44 The next Sabbath almost the whole city gathered to hear the word of the Lord. 45 But when the Jews saw the crowds, they were filled with jealousy, and contradicted what was spoken by Paul, and blasphemed. 46 Paul and Barnabas spoke out boldly and said, "It was necessary that the word of God be spoken to you first. Since you reject it and judge yourselves unworthy of eternal life, behold, we turn to the Gentiles. 47 For so the Lord has commanded us:
  'I have made you a light for the Gentiles,
    that you may bring salvation to the ends of the earth.'"
48 When the Gentiles heard this, they were glad and glorified the word of the Lord; and as many as were appointed to eternal life believed. 49 And the word of the Lord spread through the whole region. 50 But the Jews incited the devout women of high standing and the leading men of the city, and stirred up persecution against Paul and Barnabas, and drove them out of their district. 51 So they shook off the dust from their feet in protest against them and went to Iconium. 52 And the disciples were filled with joy and with the Holy Spirit.

14
  1 Now at Iconium they entered together into the Jewish synagogue, and so spoke that a great number believed, both of Jews and of Greeks. 2 But the Jews who refused to believe stirred up the Gentiles and poisoned their minds against the brethren. 3 So they spent a long time there, speaking boldly for the Lord, who bore witness to the word of his grace, granting signs and wonders to be done by their hands. 4 But the people of the city were divided; some sided with the Jews, and some with the apostles. 5 When an attempt was made by both the Gentiles and the Jews with their rulers, to mistreat them and to stone them, 6 they became aware of it and fled to the cities of Lycaonia, Lystra and Derbe, and to the surrounding country; 7 and there they continued to preach the gospel.
  8 At Lystra there was a man sitting who had no strength in his feet, lame from birth, who had never walked. 9 He listened to Paul speaking; and Paul, looking intently at him and seeing that he had faith to be made well, 10 said with a loud voice, "Stand upright on your feet." And he leaped up and began to walk. 11 And when the crowds saw what Paul had done, they lifted up their voices, saying in the Lycaonian language, "The gods have come down to us in the likeness of men!" 12 Barnabas they called Zeus, and Paul, because he was the chief speaker, they called Hermes. 13 The priest of Zeus, whose temple was just outside the city, brought oxen and garlands to the gates, and wanted to offer sacrifice with the crowds. 14 But when the apostles Barnabas and Paul heard of it, they tore their robes and rushed out into the crowd, crying out 15 "Men, why are you doing this? We also are men, of like nature with you, and bring you good news, that you should turn from these vain things to a living God who made the heaven and the earth and the sea and all that is in them. 16 In past generations he allowed all the nations to go their own ways; 17 yet he did not leave himself without witness, in that he did good and gave you rains from heaven and fruitful seasons, satisfying your hearts with food and gladness." 18 Even with these words, they had difficulty keeping the crowds from offering sacrifice to them.
  19 But Jews came there from Antioch and Iconium; and having won over the crowds, they stoned Paul and dragged him out of the city, supposing that he was dead. 20 But after the disciples had gathered around him, he got up and entered the city. And the next day he went with Barnabas to Derbe.
  21 After they had preached the gospel to that city and had made many disciples, they returned to Lystra and to Iconium and to Antioch, 22 strengthening the souls of the disciples, encouraging them to continue in the faith, and saying, "Through many tribulations we must enter the kingdom of God." 23 And when they had appointed elders for them in every church, with prayer and fasting they committed them to the Lord in whom they believed. 24 They passed through Pisidia, and came into Pamphylia. 25 And when they had spoken the word in Perga, they went down to Attalia. 26 From there they sailed to Antioch, where they had been commended to the grace of God for the work which they had completed. 27 When they arrived, they gathered the church together and declared all that God had done with them, and how he had opened a door of faith to the Gentiles. 28 And they spent a long time with the disciples.

15
  1 But some men came down from Judea and were teaching the brethren, "Unless you are circumcised according to the custom of Moses, you cannot be saved." 2 And when Paul and Barnabas had no small dissension and debate with them, Paul and Barnabas and some of the others were appointed to go up to Jerusalem to the apostles and the elders about this question. 3 So, being sent on their way by the church, they passed through both Phoenicia and Samaria, reporting the conversion of the Gentiles, and they gave great joy to all the brethren. 4 When they came to Jerusalem, they were welcomed by the church and the apostles and the elders, and they reported all that God had done with them. 5 But some believers who belonged to the party of the Pharisees stood up, and said, "It is necessary to circumcise them, and to charge them to keep the Law of Moses."
  6 The apostles and the elders came together to consider this matter. 7 After there had been much debate, Peter stood up and said to them, "Brethren, you know that in the early days God made a choice among you, that by my mouth the Gentiles would hear the word of the gospel and believe. 8 And God, who knows the heart, bore witness to them giving them the Holy Spirit, just as he also did to us; 9 and he made no distinction between us and them, but cleansed their hearts by faith. 10 Now therefore why do you test God by putting upon the neck of the disciples a yoke which neither our fathers nor we have been able to bear? 11 But we believe that we are saved through the grace of the Lord Jesus, just as they are."
  12 All the assembly kept silent; and they listened to Barnabas and Paul as they related what signs and wonders God had done through them among the Gentiles. 13 After they finished speaking, James replied, "Brethren, listen to me. 14 Simeon has related how God first showed his concern by taking from the Gentiles a people for his name. 15 With this the words of the Prophets agree, just as it is written,
16  'After this I will return,
  and I will rebuild the tabernacle of David, which has fallen;
    I will rebuild its ruins,
      and I will restore it,
17  so that the rest of mankind may seek the Lord,
    and all the Gentiles who are called by my name,'
18      says the Lord, who makes these things
        known from long ago.
19 Therefore it is my judgment that we should not trouble those who are turning to God from among the Gentiles, 20 but that we should write to them to abstain from the pollutions of idols and from fornication and from what is strangled and from blood. 21 For Moses from ancient generations has in every city those who preach him, since he is read in the synagogues every Sabbath."
  22 Then it seemed good to the apostles and the elders, with the whole church, to choose men from among them and send them to Antioch with Paul and Barnabas. They sent Judas called Barsabbas, and Silas, leading men among the brethren, 23 and they sent the following letter with them: "The apostles and the brethren who are elders, to the brethren in Antioch and Syria and Cilicia who are from the Gentiles, greetings. 24 Since we have heard that some persons from us have disturbed you with words, unsettling your minds, although we gave them no instructions, 25 it has seemed good to us, having come to one accord, to choose men and send them to you with our beloved Barnabas and Paul, 26 men who have risked their lives for the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. 27 We have therefore sent Judas and Silas, who themselves will tell you the same things by word of mouth. 28 For it seemed good to the Holy Spirit and to us to lay upon you no greater burden than these essentials: 29 that you abstain from things sacrificed to idols and from blood and from things strangled and from fornication. If you keep yourselves free from these, you will do well. Farewell."
  30 So when they were sent off, they went down to Antioch; and having gathered the congregation together, they delivered the letter. 31 And when they read it, they rejoiced at its encouragement. 32 And Judas and Silas, who were themselves prophets, encouraged the brethren with many words and strengthened them. 33 And after they had spent some time there, they were sent off in peace by the brethren to those who had sent them. 35 But Paul and Barnabas remained in Antioch, teaching and preaching the word of the Lord, with many others also.
  36 After some days Paul said to Barnabas, "Let us return and visit the brethren in every city where we proclaimed the word of the Lord, and see how they are." 37 Barnabas wanted to take John, also called Mark, with them. 38 But Paul kept insisting that they should not take along one who had deserted them in Pamphylia, and had not gone with them to the work. 39 There arose such a sharp disagreement that they separated from one another, and Barnabas took Mark with him and sailed away to Cyprus. 40 But Paul chose Silas and left, being commended by the brethren to the grace of the Lord. 41 And he went through Syria and Cilicia, strengthening the churches.

16
  1 And he came also to Derbe and to Lystra. A disciple was there, named Timothy, the son of a Jewish woman who was a believer; but his father was a Greek, 2 and he was well spoken of by the brethren who were in Lystra and Iconium. 3 Paul wanted this man to accompany him; and he took him and circumcised him because of the Jews who were in those places, for they all knew that his father was a Greek. 4 As they went on their way through the cities, they delivered to them for observance the decisions which had been reached by the apostles and elders who were in Jerusalem. 5 So the churches were strengthened in the faith, and increased in numbers daily.
  6 And they went through the region of Phrygia and Galatia, having been forbidden by the Holy Spirit to speak the word in Asia. 7 And when they came to Mysia, they tried to go into Bithynia, but the Spirit of Jesus did not allow them; 8 so passing by Mysia, they went down to Troas. 9 A vision appeared to Paul in the night: a man of Macedonia was standing and begging him, and saying, "Come over to Macedonia and help us." 10 When he had seen the vision, immediately we sought to go on into Macedonia, concluding that God had called us to preach the gospel to them.
  11 So putting out to sea from Troas, we ran a straight course to Samothrace, and on the day following to Neapolis; 12 and from there to Philippi, which is the leading city of the district of Macedonia, and a Roman colony. We stayed in this city some days; 13 and on the Sabbath day we went outside the gate to the riverside, where we supposed there was a place of prayer; and we sat down and began speaking to the women who had come together. 14 A woman named Lydia, from the city of Thyatira, a seller of purple fabrics, who was a worshiper of God, was listening. The Lord opened her heart to respond to the things spoken by Paul. 15 When she and her household had been baptized, she urged us, saying, "If you have judged me to be faithful to the Lord, come into my house and stay." And she prevailed upon us.
  16 It happened that as we were going to the place of prayer, we were met by a slave-girl who had a spirit of divination. She brought her owners much profit by fortune-telling. 17 She followed Paul and the rest of us, crying, "These men are servants of the Most High God, who are telling you the way of salvation." 18 She continued doing this for many days. But Paul was greatly annoyed, and turned and said to the spirit, "I command you in the name of Jesus Christ to come out of her!" And it came out at that very moment. 19 But when her owners saw that their hope of profit was gone, they seized Paul and Silas and dragged them into the marketplace before the authorities, 20 and when they had brought them to the magistrates they said, "These men are Jews and they are throwing our city into an uproar. 21 They advocate customs which it is not lawful for us Romans to accept or practice." 22 The crowd joined against them, and the magistrates tore the garments off them and ordered them to be beaten with rods. 23 And when they had inflicted many blows upon them, they threw them into prison, charging the jailer to guard them securely. 24 Having received such a charge, he put them into the inner prison and fastened their feet in the stocks.
  25 But about midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the prisoners were listening to them, 26 and suddenly there came a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison were shaken; and immediately all the doors were opened and everyone's chains were unfastened. 27 When the jailer woke and saw that the prison doors were open, he drew his sword and was about to kill himself, supposing that the prisoners had escaped. 28 But Paul cried with a loud voice, "Do not harm yourself, for we are all here!" 29 And he called for lights and rushed in, and trembling with fear he fell down before Paul and Silas. 30 He brought them out and said, "Sirs, what must I do to be saved?" 31 They said, "Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved, you and your household." 32 They spoke the word of the Lord to him and to all who were in his house. 33 He took them that very hour of the night and washed their wounds, and immediately he was baptized, he and all his family. 34 Then he brought them up into his house, and set food before them; and he rejoiced with his whole household that he had believed in God.
  35 But when it was day, the magistrates sent their police, saying, "Release those men." 36 And the jailer reported these words to Paul, saying, "The chief magistrates have sent to release you. Therefore come out now and go in peace." 37 But Paul said to them, "They have beaten us publicly, without trial, men who are Roman citizens, and have thrown us into prison; and do they now cast us out secretly? No! Let them come themselves and take us out." 38 The police reported these words to the magistrates, and they were afraid when they heard that they were Roman citizens. 39 So they came and apologized to them, and they took them out and asked them to leave the city. 40 They went out of the prison and entered the house of Lydia, and when they saw the brethren, they encouraged them and departed.

17
  1 Now when they had passed through Amphipolis and Apollonia, they came to Thessalonica, where there was a synagogue of the Jews. 2 And Paul went in, as was his custom, and for three weeks he reasoned with them from the scriptures, 3 explaining and proving that the Christ had to suffer and rise again from the dead, and saying, "This Jesus whom I am proclaiming to you is the Christ." 4 And some of them were persuaded, and joined Paul and Silas; as did a large number of the God- fearing Greeks and not a few of the leading women. 5 But the Jews were jealous, and taking some wicked men from the market place, they formed a mob and set the city in an uproar; they attacked the house of Jason, seeking to bring them out to the people. 6 When they did not find them, they dragged Jason and some of the brethren before the city authorities, shouting, "These men who have turned the world upside down have come here also, 7 and Jason has welcomed them, and they are all acting against the decrees of Caesar, saying that there is another king, Jesus." 8 The crowd and the city authorities were disturbed when they heard this. 9 And when they had taken a pledge from Jason and the others, they let them go.
  10 The brethren immediately sent Paul and Silas away by night to Berea, and when they arrived, they went into the Jewish synagogue. 11 Now these were more noble-minded than those in Thessalonica, for they received the word with great eagerness, examining the Scriptures daily to see if these things were so. 12 Therefore many of them believed, along with a number of prominent Greek women and men. 13 But when the Jews of Thessalonica learned that the word of God was proclaimed by Paul in Berea also, they came there too, agitating and stirring up the crowds. 14 Then the brethren immediately sent Paul out to go as far as the sea, but Silas and Timothy remained there. 15 Now those who escorted Paul brought him as far as Athens; and receiving a command for Silas and Timothy to come to him as soon as possible, they left.
  16 Now while Paul was waiting for them at Athens, his spirit was provoked within him as he saw that the city was full of idols. 17 So he was reasoning in the synagogue with the Jews and the God-fearing Greeks, and in the market place every day with those who happened to be there. 18 And also some of the Epicurean and Stoic philosophers were conversing with him. Some said, "What would this idle babbler wish to say?" Others, "He seems to be a proclaimer of foreign deities,"-because he was preaching Jesus and the resurrection. 19 And they took hold of him and brought him to the Areopagus, saying, "May we know what this new teaching is which you present? 20 For you are bringing some strange things to our ears; so we want to know what these things mean." 21 (Now all the Athenians and the foreigners who lived there spent their time in nothing other than telling or hearing something new.)
  22 So Paul stood up in the meeting of the Areopagus and said: "Men of Athens, I see that in every way you are very religious. 23 For as I passed along, and observed the objects of your worship, I found also an altar with this inscription,

'TO AN UNKNOWN GOD.'

What therefore you worship as unknown, this I proclaim to you. 24 The God who made the world and everything in it, since he is Lord of heaven and earth, does not live in temples made by hands; 25 nor is he served by human hands, as though he needed anything, since he himself gives to all men life and breath and everything. 26 And he made from one man every nation of men to live on all the face of the earth, having determined their appointed times and the boundaries of their habitation, 27 that they would seek God, if perhaps they might grope for him and find him, though he is not far from each one of us.
28  'For in him we live and move and have our being,'
as even some of your own poets have said,
  'We are his offspring.' 29 Being then God's offspring, we ought not to think that the Divine Nature is like gold or silver or stone, an image formed by the art and imagination of man. 30 The times of ignorance God overlooked, but now he commands all people everywhere to repent, 31 because he has fixed a day on which he will judge the world in righteousness by a man whom he has appointed, and of this he has given proof to all men by raising him from the dead."
  32 Now when they heard about the resurrection of the dead, some of them sneered, but others said, "We want to hear you again on this subject." 33 So Paul went out from among them. 34 But some men joined him and believed, among whom also were Dionysius the Areopagite and a woman named Damaris and others with them.

18
  1 After this he left Athens and went to Corinth. 2 And he found a Jew named Aquila, a native of Pontus, having recently come from Italy with his wife Priscilla, because Claudius had commanded all the Jews to leave Rome. He went to see them, 3 and because he was of the same trade he stayed with them, and they worked, for by trade they were tentmakers. 4 And every Sabbath he was reasoning in the synagogue, and trying to persuade Jews and Greeks.
  5 When Silas and Timothy came from Macedonia, Paul devoted himself exclusively to preaching, testifying to the Jews that Jesus was the Christ. 6 But when they opposed him and blasphemed, he shook out his garments and said to them, "Your blood be on your own heads! I am clean. From now on I will go to the Gentiles." 7 Then he left there and went to the house of a man named Titius Justus, a worshiper of God, whose house was next door to the synagogue. 8 Crispus, the ruler of the synagogue, believed in the Lord, together with all his household; and many of the Corinthians who heard him believed and were baptized. 9 And the Lord said to Paul one night in a vision, "Do not be afraid, but go on speaking and do not be silent; 10 for I am with you, and no man will attack you to harm you, for I have many people in this city." 11 And he stayed a year and six months, teaching the word of God among them.
  12 But while Gallio was proconsul of Achaia, the Jews made a united attack upon Paul and brought him before the judgment seat, 13 saying, "This man is persuading men to worship God contrary to the law." 14 But when Paul was about to open his mouth, Gallio said to the Jews, "If it were a matter of wrong or of vicious crime, O Jews, it would be reasonable for me to put up with you; 15 but since it is a matter of questions about words and names and your own law, see to it yourselves; I refuse to be a judge of these things." 16 And he drove them from the judgment seat. 17 And they all seized Sosthenes, the ruler of the synagogue, and beat him in front of the judgment seat. But Gallio paid no attention to this.
  18 After this Paul stayed many days longer, and then took leave of the brethren and sailed for Syria, and with him were Priscilla and Aquila. In Cenchrea he had his hair cut, for he had taken a vow. 19 They came to Ephesus, and he left them there. Now he himself went into the synagogue and reasoned with the Jews. 20 When they asked him to stay for a longer time, he declined; 21 but on taking leave of them he said, "I will return to you if God wills," and he set sail from Ephesus. 22 When he had landed at Caesarea, he went up and greeted the church, and then went down to Antioch. 23 After spending some time there, he departed and went from place to place through the region of Galatia and Phrygia, strengthening all the disciples.
  24 Now a Jew named Apollos, a native of Alexandria, came to Ephesus. He was an eloquent man, well versed in the scriptures. 25 He had been instructed in the way of the Lord; and being fervent in spirit, he spoke and taught accurately the things concerning Jesus, though he knew only the baptism of John. 26 And he began to speak out boldly in the synagogue. But when Priscilla and Aquila heard him, they took him aside and explained to him the way of God more accurately. 27 And when he wanted to go across to Achaia, the brethren encouraged him and wrote to the disciples to welcome him. When he had arrived, he greatly helped those who had believed through grace, 28 for he powerfully refuted the Jews in public, proving by the Scriptures that Jesus was the Christ.

19
  1 While Apollos was at Corinth, Paul passed through the upper country and came to Ephesus. There he found some disciples. 2 And he said to them, "Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?" And they said, "No, we have not even heard that there is a Holy Spirit." 3 And he said, "Into what then were you baptized?" They said, "Into John's baptism." 4 Paul said, "John baptized with the baptism of repentance, telling the people to believe in the one who was coming after him, that is, in Jesus." 5 On hearing this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. 6 And when Paul had laid his hands upon them, the Holy Spirit came on them, and they spoke with tongues and prophesied. 7 There were about twelve men in all.
  8 And he entered the synagogue and for three months spoke boldly, arguing and persuading about the kingdom of God. 9 But when some were stubborn and disbelieved, speaking evil of the Way before the congregation, he withdrew from them, and took the disciples with him, reasoning daily in the hall of Tyrannus. 10 This took place for two years, so that all who lived in the province of Asia heard the word of the Lord, both Jews and Greeks.
  11 God did extraordinary miracles by the hands of Paul, 12 so that handkerchiefs or aprons were even carried from his body to the sick, and diseases left them and the evil spirits went out. 13 But also some of the Jewish exorcists, who went from place to place, attempted to name over those who had the evil spirits the name of the Lord Jesus, saying, "I adjure you by Jesus whom Paul preaches." 14 Seven sons of Sceva, a Jewish chief priest, were doing this. 15 But the evil spirit answered them, "Jesus I know, and I know about Paul, but who are you?" 16 And the man in whom the evil spirit was leaped on them, overpowered all of them, and prevailed against them, so that they fled out of that house naked and wounded. 17 This became known to all, both Jews and Greeks, who lived in Ephesus; and fear fell upon them all and the name of the Lord Jesus was being magnified. 18 Many also of those who believed now came, confessing and disclosing their practices. 19 And a number of those who practiced magic arts brought their books together and burned them in the sight of all; and they counted the value of them and found it came to fifty thousand pieces of silver. 20 So the word of the Lord grew mightily and prevailed.
  21 Now after these things were finished, Paul purposed in the spirit to go to Jerusalem after he had passed through Macedonia and Achaia, saying, "After I have been there, I must also see Rome." 22 And having sent into Macedonia two of his helpers, Timothy and Erastus, he himself stayed in Asia for a while.
  23 About that time there arose no small disturbance concerning the Way. 24 For a man named Demetrius, a silversmith, who made silver shrines of Artemis, brought no little business to the craftsmen. 25 These he gathered together, with the workmen of similar trades, and said, "Men, you know that from this business we have our wealth. 26 And you see and hear that not only in Ephesus, but in almost all of Asia, this Paul has persuaded and turned away a considerable number of people, saying that gods made with hands are no gods at all. 27 Not only is there danger that this trade of ours fall into disrepute, but also that the temple of the great goddess Artemis be regarded as worthless and that she whom all of Asia and the world worship will even be dethroned from her magnificence."
  28 When they heard this, they were enraged and began crying out, "Great is Artemis of the Ephesians!" 29 The city was filled with the confusion, and they rushed with one accord into the theater, dragging along Gaius and Aristarchus, Paul's traveling companions from Macedonia. 30 Paul wanted to go in among the crowd, but the disciples would not let him. 31 Some of the Asiarchs also, who were friends of his, sent to him and begged him not to venture into the theater. 32 Now some were shouting one thing, some another; for the assembly was in confusion, and most of the people did not know why they had come together. 33 Some of the crowd prompted Alexander, since the Jews had put him forward. And Alexander motioned with his hand, wishing to make a defense to the people. 34 But when they recognized that he was a Jew, for about two hours they all with one voice shouted, "Great is Artemis of the Ephesians!" 35 And when the town clerk had quieted the crowd, he said, "Men of Ephesus, what man is there after all who does not know that the city of the Ephesians is guardian of the temple of the great Artemis and of the image which fell down from heaven? 36 Therefore, since these facts are undeniable, you ought to be quiet and do nothing rash. 37 For you have brought these men here who are neither robbers of temples nor blasphemers of our goddess. 38 If then Demetrius and the craftsmen with him have a complaint against anyone, the courts are open, and there are proconsuls; let them bring charges against one another. 39 But if you want anything further, it shall be settled in the lawful assembly. 40 As it is, we are in danger of being charged with rioting because of today's events. In that case we would not be able to account for this commotion, since there is no reason for it." 41 After he had said this, he dismissed the assembly.

20
  1 After the uproar had ceased, Paul sent for the disciples, and when he had exhorted them and taken his leave of them, he set out for Macedonia. 2 When he had gone through those parts and had given them much encouragement, he came to Greece. 3 There he spent three months, and when a plot was made against him by the Jews as he was about to set sail for Syria, he decided to return through Macedonia. 4 He was accompanied by Sopater of Berea, the son of Pyrrhus, and by Aristarchus and Secundus of the Thessalonians, and Gaius of Derbe, and Timothy, and Tychicus and Trophimus of Asia. 5 These went on ahead and were waiting for us at Troas. 6 But we sailed away from Philippi after the Days of Unleavened Bread, and in five days came to them at Troas, where we stayed seven days.
  7 On the first day of the week, when we were gathered together to break bread, Paul began talking to them, intending to leave the next day, and he prolonged his message until midnight. 8 There were many lamps in the upper room where we were gathered. 9 And there was a young man named Eutychus sitting in the window sill, sinking into a deep sleep. And as Paul talked on and on, he was overcome by sleep and fell down from the third story and was picked up dead. 10 But Paul went down and fell on him, and after embracing him, he said, "Do not be alarmed, for his life is in him." 11 When he had gone back up and had broken the bread and eaten, he talked with them a long while until daybreak, and then left. 12 They took away the boy alive, and were greatly comforted.
  13 But going ahead to the ship, we set sail for Assos, intending to take Paul aboard there; for so he had arranged, intending himself to go by land. 14 And when he met us at Assos, we took him on board and came to Mitylene. 15 Sailing from there, we arrived the following day opposite Chios; and the next day we crossed over to Samos; and the day after that we came to Miletus. 16 For Paul had decided to sail past Ephesus, so that he would not have to spend time in Asia; for he was hurrying to be in Jerusalem, if possible, on the day of Pentecost.
  17 From Miletus he sent to Ephesus and called to him the elders of the church. 18 And when they came to him, he said to them: "You yourselves know how I lived the whole time I was with you, from the first day that I set foot in Asia, 19 serving the Lord with all humility and with tears and with trials which came upon me through the plots of the Jews; 20 how I did not shrink from declaring to you anything that was profitable, and teaching you publicly and from house to house, 21 testifying both to Jews and to Greeks of repentance toward God and faith in our Lord Jesus Christ. 22 And now, behold, bound in the Spirit, I am going to Jerusalem, not knowing what will happen to me there, 23 except that the Holy Spirit solemnly testifies to me in every city, saying that bonds and afflictions await me. 24 But I do not consider my life of any account nor as precious to myself, if only I may finish my course and the ministry which I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of the grace of God.
  25 And now, behold, I know that all of you among whom I have gone about preaching the kingdom will see my face no more. 26 Therefore, I testify to you this day that I am innocent of the blood of all men. 27 For I did not shrink from declaring to you the whole counsel of God. 28 Be on guard for yourselves and for all the flock, among which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to shepherd the church of God which he purchased with the blood of his Own. 29 I know that after my departure savage wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock; 30 and from among your own selves will arise men speaking perverse things, to draw away the disciples after them. 31 Therefore be alert, remembering that for three years I did not cease night and day to admonish each one with tears. 32 And now I commend you to God and to the word of his grace, which is able to build you up and to give you the inheritance among all those who are sanctified. 33 I have coveted no one's silver or gold or clothes. 34 You yourselves know that these hands ministered to my own needs and to the men who were with me. 35 In everything I did, I showed you that by this kind of hard work we must help the weak, remembering the words the Lord Jesus himself said: 'It is more blessed to give than to receive.'"
  36 When he had said this, he knelt down and prayed with them all. 37 And they all wept and embraced Paul and kissed him, 38 grieving most of all over the word which he had spoken, that they would not see his face again. And they accompanied him to the ship.

21
  1 When we had parted from them and set sail, we came by a straight course to Cos, and the next day to Rhodes, and from there to Patara. 2 And having found a ship crossing over to Phoenicia, we went aboard and set sail. 3 When we had come in sight of Cyprus, leaving it on the left we sailed to Syria, and landed at Tyre; for there the ship was to unload its cargo. 4 And having sought out the disciples, we stayed there for seven days. Through the Spirit they told Paul not to go on to Jerusalem. 5 And when our days there were ended, we left and started on our journey, while they all, with wives and children, brought us on our way until we were out of the city. After kneeling down on the beach and praying, we said farewell to one another. 6 Then we went on board the ship, and they returned home.
  7 When we had finished the voyage from Tyre, we arrived at Ptolemais; and we greeted the brethren and stayed with them for a day. 8 On the next day we left and came to Caesarea, and entering the house of Philip the evangelist, who was one of the seven, we stayed with him. 9 He had four unmarried daughters who prophesied. 10 As we were staying there for some days, a prophet named Agabus came down from Judea. 11 And coming to us, he took Paul's belt and bound his own feet and hands, and said, "This is what the Holy Spirit says, 'In this way the Jews at Jerusalem will bind the man who owns this belt and deliver him into the hands of the Gentiles.'" 12 When we heard this, we and the people there begged him not to go up to Jerusalem. 13 Then Paul answered, "What are you doing, weeping and breaking my heart? For I am ready not only to be bound but even to die at Jerusalem for the name of the Lord Jesus." 14 And when he would not be persuaded, we ceased and said, "The will of the Lord be done."
  15 After these days we got ready and went up to Jerusalem. 16 And some of the disciples from Caesarea went with us, bringing us to the house of Mnason of Cyprus, an early disciple, with whom we were to lodge.
  17 When we arrived at Jerusalem, the brethren received us gladly. 18 And the following day Paul went in with us to James, and all the elders were present. 19 After he had greeted them, he related one by one the things that God had done among the Gentiles through his ministry. 20 And when they heard it, they glorified God. And they said to him, "You see, brother, how many thousands there are among the Jews of those who have believed; they are all zealous for the law, 21 and they have been told about you that you teach all the Jews who are among the Gentiles to forsake Moses, telling them not to circumcise their children or to walk according to the customs. 22 What then is to be done? They will certainly hear that you have come. 23 Therefore do what we tell you. We have four men who are under a vow; 24 take these men and purify yourself along with them and pay their expenses, so that they may shave their heads. Thus all will know that there is nothing in what they have been told about you, but that you yourself live in observance of the law. 25 But as for the Gentiles who have believed, we wrote to them our decision that they should abstain from meat sacrificed to idols and from blood and from what is strangled and from fornication." 26 The next day Paul took the men and purified himself along with them. Then he went to the temple to give notice of the date when the days of purification would end and the offering would be made for each one of them.
  27 When the seven days were almost over, the Jews from Asia, upon seeing him in the temple, stirred up all the crowd and laid hands on him, 28 crying out, "Men of Israel, help! This is the man who is teaching all men everywhere against our people and our law and this place; and besides he also brought Greeks into the temple, and he has defiled this holy place." 29 For they had previously seen Trophimus the Ephesian in the city with him, and they supposed that Paul had brought him into the temple. 30 Then all the city was aroused, and the people rushed together, and taking hold of Paul they dragged him out of the temple, and immediately the gates were shut. 31 While they were trying to kill him, a report came up to the commander of the Roman cohort that all Jerusalem was in confusion. 32 At once he took along some soldiers and centurions and ran down to them; and when they saw the commander and the soldiers, they stopped beating Paul. 33 Then the commander came up and arrested him, and ordered him to be bound with two chains. He inquired who he was and what he had done. 34 Some in the crowd shouted one thing, and some another; and as he could not learn the facts because of the uproar, he ordered him to be brought into the barracks. 35 When he came to the steps, he was actually carried by the soldiers because of the violence of the mob; 36 for the mob of the people followed, shouting, "Away with him!"
  37 As Paul was about to be brought into the barracks, he said to the commander, "May I say something to you?" And he said, "Do you know Greek? 38 Then you are not the Egyptian who some time ago stirred up a revolt and led the four thousand men of the Assassins out into the wilderness?" 39 Paul replied, "I am a Jew, from Tarsus in Cilicia, a citizen of no insignificant city; I beg you, let me speak to the people." 40 When he had given him permission, Paul, standing on the steps, motioned to the people with his hand; and when there was a great hush, he spoke to them in the Hebrew language, saying,

22
  1 "Brethren and fathers, hear my defense which I now offer to you." 2 And when they heard that he addressed them in the Hebrew language, they became more quiet. And he said: 3 "I am a Jew, born in Tarsus of Cilicia, but brought up in this city, educated under Gamaliel, strictly according to the law of our fathers, being zealous for God just as you all are today. 4 I persecuted this Way to the death, binding and delivering into prison both men and women, 5 as also the high priest and all the Council of the elders can testify. From them I also received letters to the brethren, and started off for Damascus in order to bring even those who were there to Jerusalem as prisoners to be punished.
  6 "As I made my journey and drew near to Damascus, about noon a bright light from heaven suddenly flashed around me. 7 And I fell to the ground and heard a voice saying to me, 'Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me?' 8 And I answered, 'Who are you, Lord?' And he said to me, 'I am Jesus of Nazareth, whom you are persecuting.' 9 And those who were with me saw the light, but did not hear the voice of the one who was speaking to me. 10 And I said, 'What shall I do, Lord?' And the Lord said to me, 'Get up and go on into Damascus, and there you will be told of all that has been appointed for you to do.' 11 But since I could not see because of the brightness of that light, I was led by the hand by those who were with me and came into Damascus.
  12 "A certain Ananias, a devout man according to the Law, and well spoken of by all the Jews who lived there, 13 came to me, and standing near said to me, 'Brother Saul, receive your sight!' And at that very time I looked up at him. 14 Then he said, 'The God of our fathers has appointed you to know his will and to see the Righteous One and to hear words from his mouth. 15 For you will be a witness for him to all men of what you have seen and heard. 16 Now why do you delay? Get up and be baptized, and wash away your sins, calling on his name.'
  17 "When I had returned to Jerusalem and was praying in the temple, I fell into a trance 18 and saw him saying to me, 'Make haste, and get out of Jerusalem quickly, because they will not accept your testimony about me.' 19 And I said, 'Lord, they themselves know that in one synagogue after another I used to imprison and beat those who believed in you. 20 When the blood of Stephen your witness was shed, I also was standing by and approving, and keeping the garments of those who were killing him.' 21 And he said to me, 'Go; for I will send you far away to the Gentiles.'"
  22 Up to this word they listened to him, and then they raised their voices and said, "Away with such a fellow from the earth! For he ought not to live." 23 And as they were crying out and throwing off their cloaks and tossing dust into the air, 24 the commander ordered him to be brought into the barracks, and commanded him to be examined by scourging so that he might find out the reason why they were shouting against him that way. 25 But when they stretched him out with thongs, Paul said to the centurion who was standing by, "Is it lawful for you to scourge a man who is a Roman citizen and uncondemned?" 26 When the centurion heard this, he went to the commander and told him, saying, "What are you about to do? For this man is a Roman citizen." 27 So the commander came and said to him, "Tell me, are you a Roman citizen?" And he said, "Yes." 28 The commander answered, "I bought this citizenship for a large sum." Paul said, "But I was born a citizen." 29 So those who were about to examine him withdrew from him immediately; and the commander also was afraid when he realized that Paul was a Roman citizen and that he had put him in chains.
  30 But on the next day, wishing to know for certain why he had been accused by the Jews, he released him and ordered the chief priests and all the Council to assemble, and brought Paul down and set him before them.

23
  1 And Paul, looking intently at the council, said, "Brethren, I have lived my life before God in all good conscience up to this day." 2 The high priest Ananias commanded those standing beside him to strike him on the mouth. 3 Then Paul said to him, "God shall strike you, you whitewashed wall! Do you sit to judge me according to the law, and yet contrary to the law you order me to be struck?" 4 Those who stood by said, "Would you revile God's high priest?" 5 And Paul said, "I did not know, brethren, that he was the high priest; for it is written, 'You shall not speak evil of a ruler of your people.'"
  6 But when Paul perceived that one part were Sadducees and the other Pharisees, he cried out in the council, "Brethren, I am a Pharisee, a son of Pharisees; with respect to the hope and the resurrection of the dead I am on trial." 7 When he said this, a dissension broke out between the Pharisees and the Sadducees, and the assembly was divided. 8 For the Sadducees say that there is no resurrection, nor an angel, nor a spirit, but the Pharisees acknowledge them all. 9 There occurred a great uproar; and some of the scribes of the Pharisees' party stood up and began to argue heatedly, saying, "We find nothing wrong with this man. What if a spirit or an angel has spoken to him?" 10 The dispute became so violent that the commander was afraid Paul would be torn to pieces by them and ordered the troops to go down and take him away from them by force, and bring him into the barracks.
  11 The following night the Lord stood by him and said, "Take courage, for as you have testified about me at Jerusalem, so you must bear witness also at Rome."
  12 When it was day, the Jews formed a conspiracy and bound themselves by an oath neither to eat nor drink until they had killed Paul. 13 There were more than forty who formed this plot. 14 They went to the chief priests and the elders and said, "We have bound ourselves under a solemn oath to taste nothing until we have killed Paul. 15 You therefore, along with the council, give notice now to the commander to bring him down to you, as though you were going to determine his case more exactly. And we are ready to kill him before he comes near." 16 But the son of Paul's sister heard of their ambush, and he went and entered the barracks and told Paul. 17 Paul called one of the centurions and said, "Take this young man to the commander; for he has something to tell him." 18 So he took him and brought him to the commander and said, "Paul the prisoner called me and asked me to bring this young man to you, since he has something to tell you." 19 The commander took him by the hand, and going aside asked him privately, "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 to the Council, as though they were going to inquire somewhat more thoroughly about him. 21 But do not yield to them; for more than forty of them are waiting in ambush for him, having bound themselves by an oath neither to eat nor drink until they have killed him; and now they are ready, waiting for the promise from you." 22 So the commander dismissed the young man, instructing him, "Tell no one that you have informed me of this."
  23 Then he called two of the centurions and said, "At the third hour of the night get ready two hundred soldiers with seventy horsemen and two hundred spearmen to go as far as Caesarea. 24 Also provide mounts for Paul to ride, and bring him safely to Felix the governor." 25 And he wrote a letter having this form: 26 "Claudius Lysias, to His Excellency, Governor Felix: greetings. 27 This man was seized by the Jews, and was about to be killed by them, when I came upon them with the troops and rescued him, having learned that he was a Roman citizen. 28 And desiring to know the charge for which they were accusing him, I brought him down to their council. 29 I found that he was accused over questions about their Law, but there was no accusation against him deserving death or imprisonment. 30 And when I was informed that there would be a plot against the man, I sent him to you at once, also instructing his accusers to bring charges against him before you."
  31 So the soldiers, in accordance with their orders, took Paul and brought him by night to Antipatris. 32 But the next day, leaving the horsemen to go on with him, they returned to the barracks. 33 When these had come to Caesarea and delivered the letter to the governor, they also presented Paul to him. 34 When he had read the letter, he asked from what province he was, and when he learned that he was from Cilicia, 35 he said, "I will hear you when your accusers arrive also." And he commanded him to be kept in Herod's Praetorium.

24
  1 After five days the high priest Ananias came down with some elders, with an attorney named Tertullus, and they brought their charges against Paul before the governor. 2 And when Paul was called, Tertullus began to accuse him, saying to Felix: "Since through you we have enjoyed much peace, and since by your provision, reforms are introduced on behalf of this nation, 3 we acknowledge this in every way and everywhere, most excellent Felix, with all gratitude. 4 But, that I may not weary you further, I beg you in your kindness to hear us briefly. 5 For we have found this man a pestilent fellow who stirs up dissension among all the Jews throughout the world, and a ringleader of the sect of the Nazarenes. 6 He even tried to desecrate the temple; so we seized him. 8 By examining him yourself you will be able to learn the truth about all these charges of which we accuse him." 9 The Jews also joined in the attack, asserting that these things were so.
  10 When the governor had motioned for him to speak, Paul replied: "Realizing that for many years you have been a judge over this nation, I cheerfully make my defense. 11 Since you can easily verify that no more than twelve days ago I went up to Jerusalem to worship. 12 They did not find me disputing with anyone or stirring up a crowd, either in the temple or in the synagogues, or in the city. 13 Neither can they prove to you the charges they are now making against me. 14 But this I admit to you, that according to the Way which they call a sect I do worship the God of our fathers, believing everything that is in accordance with the Law and that is written in the Prophets, 15 having a hope in God, which these men cherish themselves, that there will certainly be a resurrection of both the righteous and the wicked. 16 And so I do my best always to have a clear conscience before God and men. 17 Now after several years I came to bring alms to my nation and to present offerings. 18 As I was doing this, they found me purified in the temple, without any crowd or uproar. But there were some Jews from Asia-19 who ought to be here before you and to make accusation, if they should have anything against me. 20 Or else let these men themselves tell what wrongdoing they found when I stood before the Council, 21 except this one thing which I shouted out while standing among them, 'With respect to the resurrection of the dead I am on trial before you today.'"
  22 But Felix, having a more exact knowledge about the Way, put them off, saying, "When Lysias the commander comes down, I will decide your case." 23 Then he gave orders to the centurion for him to be kept in custody but have some freedom, and not to prevent any of his friends from ministering to his needs.
  24 But some days later Felix came with Drusilla, his wife who was a Jewess, and sent for Paul and heard him speak about faith in Christ Jesus. 25 But as he was discussing righteousness, self-control and the judgment to come, Felix became frightened and said, "Go away for the present, and when I find time I will summon you." 26 At the same time, he was hoping that money would be given him by Paul. So he sent for him often and conversed with him.
  27 But when two years had passed, Felix was succeeded by Porcius Festus, and desiring to do the Jews a favor, Felix left Paul in prison.

25
  1 Festus then, three days after arriving in the province, went up to Jerusalem from Caesarea. 2 And the chief priests and the principal men of the Jews brought charges against Paul; and they urged him, 3 as a favor to them, to have Paul transferred to Jerusalem, for they were preparing an ambush to kill him along the way. 4 Festus answered that Paul was being kept at Caesarea, and that he himself intended to go there shortly. 5 "Therefore," he said, "let the men of authority among you go there with me, and if there is anything wrong about the man, let them prosecute him."
  6 After he had spent not more than eight or ten days among them, he went down to Caesarea, and on the next day he took his seat on the tribunal and ordered Paul to be brought. 7 And when Paul arrived, the Jews who had come down from Jerusalem stood around him, bringing many serious charges against him, which they could not prove. 8 Paul said in his defense, "Neither against the law of the Jews, nor against the temple, nor against Caesar have I offended at all." 9 But Festus, wishing to do the Jews a favor, said to Paul, "Are you willing to go up to Jerusalem and stand trial before me there on these charges?" 10 But Paul said, "I am standing before Caesar's tribunal, where I ought to be tried. I have done no wrong to the Jews, as you also very well know. 11 If, then, I am a wrongdoer and have committed anything worthy of death, I do not refuse to die; but if none of the charges brought against me is true, no one can hand me over to them. I appeal to Caesar." 12 Then when Festus had conferred with his council, he answered, "You have appealed to Caesar, to Caesar you shall go."
  13 Now when a few days had passed, King Agrippa and Bernice arrived at Caesarea and paid their respects to Festus. 14 While they were spending many days there, Festus laid Paul's case before the king, saying, "There is a man who was left as a prisoner by Felix; 15 and when I was at Jerusalem, the chief priests and the elders of the Jews brought charges against him, asking for sentence against him. 16 I answered them that it is not the custom of the Romans to hand over any man before the accused meets his accusers face to face and has an opportunity to make his defense against the charges. 17 When therefore they came together here, I did not delay, but on the next day took my seat on the tribunal and ordered the man to be brought in. 18 When the accusers stood up, they did not charge him of such crimes as I had expected, 19 but they simply had some points of dispute with him about their own religion and about a dead man, Jesus, whom Paul asserted to be alive. 20 Being at a loss how to investigate such matters, I asked whether he was willing to go to Jerusalem and there stand trial on these matters. 21 But when Paul appealed to be held in custody for the Emperor's decision, I ordered him to be kept in custody until I could send him to Caesar. 22 Then Agrippa said to Festus, "I also would like to hear the man myself." "Tomorrow," he said, "you shall hear him."
  23 So on the next day Agrippa and Bernice came with great pomp and entered the audience room with the high ranking officers and the prominent men of the city. At the command of Festus, Paul was brought in. 24 Festus said, "King Agrippa and all who are present with us, you see this man about whom the whole Jewish people petitioned me, both at Jerusalem and here, shouting that he ought not to live any longer. 25 But I found that he had done nothing deserving of death; and as he himself appealed to the emperor, I decided to send him. 26 But I have nothing definite about him to write to my lord. Therefore I have brought him before you all and especially before you, King Agrippa, so that after the investigation has taken place, I may have something to write. 27 For it seems to me unreasonable, in sending a prisoner, not to indicate the charges against him."

26
  1 Agrippa said to Paul, "You have permission to speak for yourself." Then Paul stretched out his hand and began his defense: 2 "I consider myself fortunate that it is before you, King Agrippa, I am to make my defense today against all the accusations of the Jews, 3 because you are especially familiar with all customs and controversies of the Jews; therefore I beg you to listen to me patiently. 4 So then, all the Jews know my manner of life from my youth up, which from the beginning was spent among my own nation and at Jerusalem. 5 They have known about me for a long time, if they are willing to testify, that I lived as a Pharisee according to the strictest sect of our religion. 6 And now I am standing trial for the hope of the promise made by God to our fathers; 7 the promise to which our twelve tribes hope to attain, as they earnestly serve God night and day. And for this hope, O King, I am being accused by Jews. 8 Why is it thought incredible by any of you that God raises the dead? 9 I myself was convinced that I ought to do many things to oppose the name of Jesus of Nazareth. 10 And that is just what I did in Jerusalem; I not only shut up many of the saints in prison, by authority from the chief priests, but when they were put to death I cast my vote against them. 11 And as I punished them often in all the synagogues, I tried to force them to blaspheme; and being furiously enraged against them, I persecuted them even to foreign cities.
  12 "On one of these journeys I was going to Damascus with the authority and commission of the chief priests. 13 At midday, O King, I saw on the way a light from heaven, brighter than the sun, shining around me and those who journeyed with me. 14 And when we had all fallen to the ground, I heard a voice saying to me in the Hebrew language, 'Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me? It is hard for you to kick against the goads.' 15 And I said, 'Who are you, Lord?' And the Lord said, 'I am Jesus whom you are persecuting. 16 But get up and stand on your feet; for this purpose I have appeared to you, to appoint you a minister and a witness to the things which you have seen of me, and also to the things in which I will appear to you; 17 rescuing you from the Jewish people and from the Gentiles, to whom I am sending you, 18 to open their eyes, so that they may turn from darkness to light and from the power of Satan to God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins and a place among those who are sanctified by faith in me.'
  19 "So, King Agrippa, I was not disobedient to the heavenly vision, 20 but declared first to those at Damascus, then at Jerusalem and throughout all the country of Judea, and also to the Gentiles, that they should repent and turn to God and perform deeds worthy of their repentance. 21 For this reason the Jews seized me in the temple and tried to kill me. 22 To this day I have had the help that comes from God, and so I stand here testifying both to small and great, saying nothing but what the prophets and Moses said would happen: 23 that the Christ must suffer, and that, by being the first to rise from the dead, he would proclaim light both to the people and to the Gentiles."
  24 And as he was saying this in his defense, Festus said in a loud voice, "Paul, you are out of your mind! Your great learning is driving you mad." 25 But Paul said, "I am not mad, most excellent Festus, but I am speaking the sober truth. 26 For the king knows about these things, and to him I speak freely; for I am persuaded that none of these things has escaped his notice, for this was not done in a corner. 27 King Agrippa, do you believe the prophets? I know that you do." 28 And Agrippa said to Paul, "In a short time you think to persuade me to become a Christian!" 29 And Paul said, "Whether in a short or a long time, I would to God that not only you but also all who hear me this day might become such as I am-except for these chains."
  30 The king rose and the governor and Bernice, and those who were sitting with them, 31 and when they had gone aside, they began talking to one another, saying, "This man is not doing anything worthy of death or imprisonment." 32 And Agrippa said to Festus, "This man could have been set free if he had not appealed to Caesar."

27
  1 When it was decided that we would sail for Italy, they delivered Paul and some other prisoners to a centurion of the Augustan cohort named Julius. 2 And embarking in a ship from Adramyttium, which was about to sail to the ports along the coast of Asia, we put out to sea, accompanied by Aristarchus, a Macedonian from Thessalonica. 3 The next day we put in at Sidon; and Julius treated Paul kindly, and allowed him to go to his friends and be cared for. 4 We put out to sea from there and sailed under the lee of Cyprus, because the winds were against us. 5 When we had sailed across the open sea off the coast of Cilicia and Pamphylia, we landed at Myra in Lycia. 6 There the centurion found an Alexandrian ship sailing for Italy, and he put us aboard it. 7 When we had sailed slowly for a good many days, and with difficulty had arrived off Cnidus, since the wind did not allow us to go farther, we sailed under the lee of Crete, off Salmone. 8 We sailed along it with difficulty and came to a place called Fair Havens, near which was the city of Lasea.
  9 As much time had been lost, and the voyage was now dangerous because the fast had already gone by, Paul advised them, 10 and said to them, "Men, I perceive that the voyage will be with injury and great loss, not only of the cargo and the ship, but also of our lives." 11 But the centurion was more persuaded by the pilot and the owner of the ship than by what was being said by Paul. 12 Because the harbor was not suitable to winter in, the majority reached a decision to put out to sea from there, on the chance that somehow they could reach Phoenix, a harbor of Crete, facing southwest and northwest, and spend the winter there.
  13 When a gentle south wind came up, supposing that they had obtained their purpose, they weighed anchor and began sailing along Crete, close inshore. 14 But before very long there rushed down from the land a violent wind, called the northeaster; 15 and when the ship was caught in it and could not face the wind, we gave way to it and were driven along. 16 And running under the lee of a small island called Cauda, we were scarcely able to secure the boat. 17 After they had hoisted it up, they used supporting cables to undergird the ship; and fearing that they might run aground on the shallows of Syrtis, they lowered the sea anchor and in this way let themselves be driven along. 18 The next day as we were being violently storm-tossed, they began to throw the cargo overboard; 19 and on the third day they threw the ship's tackle overboard with their own hands. 20 When neither sun nor stars appeared for many days, and no small storm was raging on us, all hope of our being saved was finally abandoned.
  21 When they had gone a long time without food, then Paul stood up among them and said, "Men, you should have followed my advice and not to have set sail from Crete and incurred this damage and loss. 22 Yet now I urge you to keep up your courage; for there will be no loss of life among you, but only of the ship. 23 For this very night an angel of the God to whom I belong and whom I serve stood before me, 24 and he said, 'Do not be afraid, Paul; you must stand before Caesar; and behold, God has granted you all those who sail with you.' 25 So keep up your courage, men, for I have faith in God that it will happen exactly as I have been told. 26 But we must run aground on some island."
  27 But when the fourteenth night came, as we were being driven across the Adriatic Sea, about midnight the sailors began to sense that they were approaching land. 28 They took soundings and found it to be twenty fathoms; and a little farther on they took soundings again and found it to be fifteen fathoms. 29 Fearing that we might run aground somewhere on the rocks, they cast four anchors from the stern and prayed for daybreak. 30 But as the sailors were trying to escape from the ship and had let down the lifeboat into the sea, on the pretense of laying out anchors from the bow, 31 Paul said to the centurion and the soldiers, "Unless these men stay in the ship, you cannot be saved." 32 Then the soldiers cut the ropes of the lifeboat and let it fall away.
  33 As day was about to dawn, Paul urged them all to take some food, saying, "Today is the fourteenth day that you have been in suspense and without food, having taken nothing. 34 Therefore I urge you to take some food; it will give you strength, since not a hair is to perish from the head of any of you." 35 Having said this, he took bread and gave thanks to God in the presence of all, and he broke it and began to eat. 36 Then they all were encouraged and ate some food themselves. 37 All of us in the ship were two hundred and seventy-six persons. 38 When they had eaten enough, they lightened the ship by throwing out the wheat into the sea.
  39 When day came, they could not recognize the land, but they did observe a bay with a beach, and they resolved to drive the ship onto it if they could. 40 So they cast off the anchors and left them in the sea, at the same time loosening the ropes that tied the rudders; then hoisting the foresail to the wind they made for the beach. 41 But striking a sandbar they ran the vessel aground; the bow stuck fast and remained immovable, and the stern was broken up by the pounding of the surf. 42 The soldiers' plan was to kill the prisoners, so that none of them would swim away and escape. 43 But the centurion, wanting to bring Paul safely through, kept them from carrying out their plan. He ordered those who could swim to jump overboard first and get to land, 44 and the rest on planks or on various pieces of the ship. And so it happened that they were all brought safely to land.

28
  1 When we had been brought safely through, then we found out that the island was called Malta. 2 The natives showed us unusual kindness, for they kindled a fire and welcomed us all, because it had begun to rain and was cold. 3 But when Paul had gathered a bundle of sticks and put them on the fire, a viper came out because of the heat and fastened itself on his hand. 4 When the natives saw the creature hanging from his hand, they said to one another, "No doubt this man is a murderer. Though he has escaped from the sea, justice has not allowed him to live." 5 However he shook the creature off into the fire and suffered no harm. 6 They waited, expecting him to swell up or suddenly fall down dead; but after they had waited a long time and saw nothing unusual happen to him, they changed their minds and said that he was a god. 7 Now in the neighborhood of that place were lands belonging to the chief man of the island, named Publius, who welcomed us and entertained us hospitably for three days. 8 It happened that the father of Publius was lying in bed sick with recurrent fever and dysentery; and Paul went in to see him and after he had prayed, he laid his hands on him and healed him. 9 When this had happened, the rest of the people on the island who had diseases also came and were cured. 10 They honored us in many ways; and when we were ready to sail, they furnished us with the supplies we needed.
  11 After three months we set sail in a ship which had wintered in the island, an Alexandrian ship, with the Twin Brothers as figurehead. 12 After we put in at Syracuse, we stayed there for three days. 13 From there we sailed around and arrived at Rhegium, and a day later a south wind sprang up, and on the second day we came to Puteoli. 14 There we found some brethren, and were invited to stay with them for seven days. And so we came to Rome. 15 And the brethren, when they heard of us, came from there as far as the Forum of Appius and Three Taverns to meet us. When Paul saw them, he thanked God and took courage.
  16 And when we came into Rome, Paul was allowed to stay by himself, with the soldier that guarded him.
  17 After three days Paul called together the local leaders of the Jews; and when they had gathered, he said to them, "Brethren, though I had done nothing against our people or the customs of our fathers, yet I was delivered prisoner from Jerusalem into the hands of the Romans. 18 And when they had examined me, they were willing to release me because there was no ground for putting me to death. 19 But when the Jews objected, I was compelled to appeal to Caesar-not that I had any charge to bring against my own nation. 20 For this reason therefore I have asked to see you and speak with you, since it is because of the hope of Israel that I am bound with this chain." 21 They said to him, "We have not received letters from Judea concerning you, and none of the brethren who have come here has reported or spoken anything bad about you. 22 But we desire to hear from you what your views are; for concerning this sect, we know that everywhere it is spoken against."
  23 When they had appointed a day for Paul, they came to him at his lodging in great numbers. And he explained the matter to them from morning till evening, testifying to the kingdom of God and trying to convince them about Jesus both from the law of Moses and from the prophets. 24 Some were convinced by what he said, but others would not believe. 25 When they disagreed among themselves, they began to leave, after Paul had made one final statement: "The Holy Spirit spoke the truth to your fathers through Isaiah the prophet: 26 saying,
  'Go to this people and say,
  "you will be ever hearing, but will never understand;
    and you will be ever seeing, but will never perceive.
27  For this people's heart has become dull,
    and with their ears they scarcely hear,
      and their eyes they have closed;
      otherwise they might see with their eyes,
    and hear with their ears,
  and understand with their heart and turn,
    and I would heal them."'
28 Therefore let it be known to you that this salvation of God has been sent to the Gentiles; they will listen."
  30 And he stayed there two whole years in his own rented quarters and welcomed all who came to him, 31 preaching the kingdom of God and teaching about the Lord Jesus Christ quite openly and unhindered.