24 After five days the high priest Ananias 1 came down with some elders and an attorney 2 named 3 Tertullus, and they 4 brought formal charges 5 against Paul to the governor. 2 When Paul 6 had been summoned, Tertullus began to accuse him, 7 saying, “We have experienced a lengthy time 8 of peace through your rule, 9 and reforms 10 are being made in this nation 11 through your foresight. 12 3 Most excellent Felix, 13 we acknowledge this everywhere and in every way 14 with all gratitude. 15 4 But so that I may not delay 16 you any further, I beg 17 you to hear us briefly 18 with your customary graciousness. 19 5 For we have found 20 this man to be a troublemaker, 21 one who stirs up riots 22 among all the Jews throughout the world, and a ringleader 23 of the sect of the Nazarenes. 24 6 He 25 even tried to desecrate 26 the temple, so we arrested 27 him. 7 [[EMPTY]] 28 8 When you examine 29 him yourself, you will be able to learn from him 30 about all these things we are accusing him of doing.” 31 9 The Jews also joined in the verbal attack, 32 claiming 33 that these things were true.
10 When the governor gestured for him to speak, Paul replied, “Because I know 34 that you have been a judge over this nation for many years, I confidently make my defense. 35 11 As you can verify 36 for yourself, not more than twelve days ago 37 I went up to Jerusalem 38 to worship. 12 They did not find me arguing 39 with anyone or stirring up a crowd 40 in the temple courts 41 or in the synagogues 42 or throughout the city, 43 13 nor can they prove 44 to you the things 45 they are accusing me of doing. 46 14 But I confess this to you, that I worship 47 the God of our ancestors 48 according to the Way (which they call a sect), believing everything that is according to the law 49 and that is written in the prophets. 15 I have 50 a hope in God (a hope 51 that 52 these men 53 themselves accept too) that there is going to be a resurrection of both the righteous and the unrighteous. 54 16 This is the reason 55 I do my best to always 56 have a clear 57 conscience toward God and toward people. 58 17 After several years 59 I came to bring to my people gifts for the poor 60 and to present offerings, 61 18 which I was doing when they found me in the temple, ritually purified, 62 without a crowd or a disturbance. 63 19 But there are some Jews from the province of Asia 64 who should be here before you and bring charges, 65 if they have anything against me. 20 Or these men here 66 should tell what crime 67 they found me guilty of 68 when I stood before the council, 69 21 other than 70 this one thing 71 I shouted out while I stood before 72 them: ‘I am on trial before you today concerning the resurrection of the dead.’” 73
22 Then Felix, 74 who understood the facts 75 concerning the Way 76 more accurately, 77 adjourned their hearing, 78 saying, “When Lysias the commanding officer comes down, I will decide your case.” 79 23 He ordered the centurion 80 to guard Paul, 81 but to let him have some freedom, 82 and not to prevent any of his friends 83 from meeting his needs. 84
24 Some days later, when Felix 85 arrived with his wife Drusilla, 86 who was Jewish, he sent for Paul and heard him speak 87 about faith in Christ Jesus. 88 25 While Paul 89 was discussing 90 righteousness, self-control, 91 and the coming judgment, Felix 92 became 93 frightened and said, “Go away for now, and when I have an opportunity, 94 I will send for you.” 26 At the same time he was also hoping that Paul would give him money, 95 and for this reason he sent for Paul 96 as often as possible 97 and talked 98 with him. 27 After two years 99 had passed, Porcius Festus 100 succeeded Felix, 101 and because he wanted to do the Jews a favor, Felix left Paul in prison. 102
25 Now 1 three days after Festus 2 arrived in the province, he went up to Jerusalem 3 from Caesarea. 4 2 So the chief priests and the most prominent men 5 of the Jews brought formal charges 6 against Paul to him. 3 Requesting him to do them a favor against Paul, 7 they urged Festus 8 to summon him to Jerusalem, planning an ambush 9 to kill him along the way. 4 Then Festus 10 replied that Paul was being kept at Caesarea, 11 and he himself intended to go there 12 shortly. 5 “So,” he said, “let your leaders 13 go down there 14 with me, and if this man has done anything wrong, 15 they may bring charges 16 against him.”
6 After Festus 17 had stayed 18 not more than eight or ten days among them, he went down to Caesarea, 19 and the next day he sat 20 on the judgment seat 21 and ordered Paul to be brought. 7 When he arrived, the Jews who had come down from Jerusalem stood around him, 22 bringing many serious 23 charges that they were not able to prove. 24 8 Paul said in his defense, 25 “I have committed no offense 26 against the Jewish law 27 or against the temple or against Caesar.” 28 9 But Festus, 29 wanting to do the Jews a favor, asked Paul, “Are you willing to go up to Jerusalem and be tried 30 before me there on these charges?” 31 10 Paul replied, 32 “I am standing before Caesar’s 33 judgment seat, 34 where I should be tried. 35 I have done nothing wrong 36 to the Jews, as you also know very well. 37 11 If then I am in the wrong 38 and have done anything that deserves death, I am not trying to escape dying, 39 but if not one of their charges against me is true, 40 no one can hand me over to them. 41 I appeal to Caesar!” 42 12 Then, after conferring with his council, 43 Festus 44 replied, “You have appealed to Caesar; 45 to Caesar 46 you will go!” 47
13 After several days had passed, King Agrippa 48 and Bernice arrived at Caesarea 49 to pay their respects 50 to Festus. 51 14 While 52 they were staying there many days, Festus 53 explained Paul’s case to the king to get his opinion, 54 saying, “There is a man left here as a prisoner by Felix. 15 When I was in Jerusalem, 55 the chief priests and the elders of the Jews informed 56 me about him, 57 asking for a sentence of condemnation 58 against him. 16 I answered them 59 that it was not the custom of the Romans to hand over anyone 60 before the accused had met his accusers face to face 61 and had been given 62 an opportunity to make a defense against the accusation. 63 17 So after they came back here with me, 64 I did not postpone the case, 65 but the next day I sat 66 on the judgment seat 67 and ordered the man to be brought. 18 When his accusers stood up, they did not charge 68 him with any of the evil deeds I had suspected. 69 19 Rather they had several points of disagreement 70 with him about their own religion 71 and about a man named Jesus 72 who was dead, whom Paul claimed 73 to be alive. 20 Because I was at a loss 74 how I could investigate these matters, 75 I asked if he were willing to go to Jerusalem and be tried 76 there on these charges. 77 21 But when Paul appealed to be kept in custody for the decision of His Majesty the Emperor, 78 I ordered him to be kept under guard until I could send him to Caesar.” 79 22 Agrippa 80 said to Festus, 81 “I would also like to hear the man myself.” “Tomorrow,” he replied, 82 “you will hear him.”
23 So the next day Agrippa 83 and Bernice came with great pomp 84 and entered the audience hall, 85 along with the senior military officers 86 and the prominent men of the city. When Festus 87 gave the order, 88 Paul was brought in. 24 Then Festus 89 said, “King Agrippa, 90 and all you who are present here with us, you see this man about whom the entire Jewish populace 91 petitioned 92 me both in Jerusalem 93 and here, 94 shouting loudly 95 that he ought not to live any longer. 25 But I found that he had done nothing that deserved death, 96 and when he appealed 97 to His Majesty the Emperor, 98 I decided to send him. 99 26 But I have nothing definite 100 to write to my lord 101 about him. 102 Therefore I have brought him before you all, and especially before you, King Agrippa, 103 so that after this preliminary hearing 104 I may have something to write. 27 For it seems unreasonable to me to send a prisoner without clearly indicating 105 the charges against him.”
26 So Agrippa 1 said to Paul, “You have permission 2 to speak for yourself.” Then Paul held out his hand 3 and began his defense: 4
2 “Regarding all the things I have been accused of by the Jews, King Agrippa, 5 I consider myself fortunate that I am about to make my defense before you today, 3 because you are especially 6 familiar with all the customs and controversial issues 7 of the Jews. Therefore I ask 8 you to listen to me patiently. 4 Now all the Jews know the way I lived 9 from my youth, spending my life from the beginning among my own people 10 and in Jerusalem. 11 5 They know, 12 because they have known 13 me from time past, 14 if they are willing to testify, that according to the strictest party 15 of our religion, I lived as a Pharisee. 16 6 And now I stand here on trial 17 because of my hope in the promise made by God to our ancestors, 18 7 a promise 19 that our twelve tribes hope to attain as they earnestly serve God 20 night and day. Concerning this hope the Jews are accusing me, 21 Your Majesty! 22 8 Why do you people 23 think 24 it is unbelievable 25 that 26 God raises the dead? 9 Of course, 27 I myself was convinced 28 that it was necessary to do many things hostile to the name of Jesus the Nazarene. 10 And that is what I did in Jerusalem: Not only did I lock up many of the saints in prisons by the authority I received 29 from the chief priests, but I also cast my vote 30 against them when they were sentenced to death. 31 11 I punished 32 them often in all the synagogues 33 and tried to force 34 them to blaspheme. Because I was so furiously enraged 35 at them, I went to persecute 36 them even in foreign cities.
12 “While doing this very thing, 37 as I was going 38 to Damascus with authority and complete power 39 from the chief priests, 13 about noon along the road, Your Majesty, 40 I saw a light from heaven, 41 brighter than the sun, shining everywhere around 42 me and those traveling with me. 14 When we had all fallen to the ground, I heard a voice saying to me in Aramaic, 43 ‘Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me? You are hurting yourself 44 by kicking against the goads.’ 45 15 So I said, ‘Who are you, Lord?’ And the Lord replied, 46 ‘I am Jesus whom you are persecuting. 16 But get up and stand on your feet, for I have appeared to you for this reason, to designate you in advance 47 as a servant and witness 48 to the things 49 you have seen 50 and to the things in which I will appear to you. 17 I will rescue 51 you from your own people 52 and from the Gentiles, to whom 53 I am sending you 18 to open their eyes so that they turn 54 from darkness to light and from the power 55 of Satan to God, so that they may receive forgiveness of sins and a share 56 among those who are sanctified by faith in me.’
19 “Therefore, King Agrippa, 57 I was not disobedient 58 to the heavenly 59 vision, 20 but I declared to those in Damascus first, and then to those in Jerusalem and in all Judea, 60 and to the Gentiles, that they should repent and turn to God, 61 performing deeds consistent with 62 repentance. 21 For this reason the Jews seized me in the temple courts 63 and were trying to kill me. 22 I have experienced 64 help from God to this day, and so I stand testifying to both small and great, saying nothing except 65 what the prophets and Moses said 66 was going to happen: 23 that 67 the Christ 68 was to suffer and be the first to rise from the dead, to proclaim light both to our people 69 and to the Gentiles.” 70
24 As Paul 71 was saying these things in his defense, Festus 72 exclaimed loudly, “You have lost your mind, 73 Paul! Your great learning is driving you insane!” 25 But Paul replied, 74 “I have not lost my mind, most excellent Festus, 75 but am speaking 76 true and rational 77 words. 26 For the king knows about these things, and I am speaking freely 78 to him, 79 because I cannot believe 80 that any of these things has escaped his notice, 81 for this was not done in a corner. 82 27 Do you believe the prophets, 83 King Agrippa? 84 I know that you believe.” 28 Agrippa 85 said to Paul, “In such a short time are you persuading me to become a Christian?” 86 29 Paul replied, “I pray to God that whether in a short or a long time 87 not only you but also all those who are listening to me today could become such as I am, except for these chains.” 88
30 So the king got up, and with him the governor and Bernice and those sitting with them, 31 and as they were leaving they said to one another, 89 “This man is not doing anything deserving 90 death or imprisonment.” 32 Agrippa 91 said to Festus, 92 “This man could have been released 93 if he had not appealed to Caesar.” 94