They examined me1 and wanted to release me,2 because I was not guilty of any crime deserving death.319
But when the Jews objected, I was compelled to appeal to Caesar4--not that I had any charge to bring against my own people.
For this reason I have asked to see you and talk with you. It is because of the hope of Israel5 that I am bound with this chain."621
They replied, "We have not received any letters from Judea concerning you, and none of the brothers7 who have come from there has reported or said anything bad about you.
But we want to hear what your views are, for we know that people everywhere are talking against this sect."823
They arranged to meet Paul on a certain day, and came in even larger numbers to the place where he was staying. From morning till evening he explained and declared to them the kingdom of God9 and tried to convince them about Jesus10 from the Law of Moses and from the Prophets.1124
Some were convinced by what he said, but others would not believe.1225
They disagreed among themselves and began to leave after Paul had made this final statement: "The Holy Spirit spoke the truth to your forefathers when he said13 through Isaiah the prophet:
" 'Go to this people and say, "You will be ever hearing but never understanding; you will be ever seeing but never perceiving."
For this people's heart has become calloused;14 they hardly hear with their ears, and they have closed their eyes. Otherwise they might see with their eyes, hear with their ears, understand with their hearts and turn, and I would heal them.'a1528
"Therefore I want you to know that God's salvation16 has been sent to the Gentiles,17 and they will listen!"b