Acts 221 a“Brothers and fathers, hear the defense that I now make before you.”
2And when they heard that he was addressing them in bthe Hebrew language ▼
▼Or the Hebrew dialect (probably Aramaic)they became even more quiet. And he said:
3 d“I am a Jew, born in Tarsus in Cilicia, but brought up in this city, educated eat the feet of fGamaliel ▼
▼Or city at the feet of Gamaliel, educatedhaccording to the strict manner of the law of our fathers, ibeing zealous for God jas all of you are this day. 4 kI persecuted lthis Way mto the death, binding and delivering to prison both men and women, 5as nthe high priest and othe whole council of elders can bear me witness. From them I received letters to pthe brothers, and I journeyed toward Damascus to take those also who were there and bring them in bonds to Jerusalem to be punished.
6 q“As I was on my way and drew near to Damascus, about noon a great light from heaven suddenly shone around me. 7And I fell to the ground and heard a voice saying to me, ‘Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me?’ 8And I answered, ‘Who are you, Lord?’ And he said to me, ‘I am rJesus of Nazareth, whom you are persecuting.’ 9 sNow those who were with me saw the light but did not understand ▼
▼Or hear with understandingthe voice of the one who was speaking to me. 10And I said, u‘What shall I do, Lord?’ And the Lord said to me, ‘Rise, and go into Damascus, and there you will be told all that is appointed for you to do.’ 11And 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“And vone Ananias, a devout man waccording to the law, xwell spoken of by all the Jews who lived there, 13 ycame to me, and standing by me said to me, ‘Brother Saul, receive your sight.’ And zat that very hour I received my sight and saw him. 14And he said, aa‘The God of our fathers abappointed you to know his will, acto see adthe Righteous One and aeto hear a voice from his mouth; 15for afyou will be a witness for him to everyone of what agyou have seen and heard. 16And now why do you wait? ahRise and be baptized and aiwash away your sins, ajcalling on his name.’
17 ak“When I had returned to Jerusalem and alwas praying in the temple, I fell into ama trance 18and saw him saying to me, an‘Make haste and get out of Jerusalem quickly, because they will not accept your testimony about me.’ 19And I said, ‘Lord, they themselves know that in one synagogue after another aoI imprisoned and apbeat those who believed in you. 20And when the blood of Stephen aqyour witness was being shed, arI myself was standing by and asapproving and atwatching over the garments of those who killed him.’ 21And he said to me, ‘Go, for I will send you aufar away to the Gentiles.’”
Paul and the Roman Tribune22Up to this word they listened to him. Then they raised their voices and said, av“Away with such a fellow from the earth! For awhe should not be allowed to live.” 23And as they were shouting and throwing off their cloaks and flinging dust into the air, 24the tribune ordered him to be brought into axthe barracks, saying that he should be ayexamined by flogging, to find out why they were shouting against him like this. 25But when they had stretched him out for the whips ▼
▼Or when they had tied him up with leather stripsPaul said to the centurion who was standing by, “Is it lawful for you to flog baa man who is a Roman citizen and uncondemned?” 26When the centurion heard this, he went to the tribune and said to him, “What are you about to do? For this man is a Roman citizen.” 27So the tribune came and said to him, “Tell me, are you a Roman citizen?” And he said, “Yes.” 28The tribune answered, “I bought this citizenship for a large sum.” Paul said, “But I am a citizen by birth.” 29So those who were about bbto examine him withdrew from him immediately, and the tribune also bcwas afraid, bdfor he realized that Paul was a Roman citizen and that behe had bound him.
Paul Before the Council30But on the next day, bfdesiring to know the real reason why he was being accused by the Jews, he unbound him and commanded the chief priests and all the council to meet, and he brought Paul down and set him before them.
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