There we found some believers. They invited us to spend a week with them. At last we came to Rome.
The brothers and sisters there had heard we were coming. They traveled as far as the Forum of Appius and the Three Taverns to meet us. When Paul saw these people, he thanked God and was cheered up.
When we got to Rome, Paul was allowed to live by himself. But a soldier guarded him.
Three days later Paul called a meeting of the Jewish leaders. So they came. Paul said to them, "My brothers, I have done nothing against our people. I have also done nothing against what our people of long ago practiced. But I was arrested in Jerusalem. I was handed over to the Romans.
"They questioned me. And they wanted to let me go. They saw I wasn't guilty of any crime worthy of death.
But the Jews objected. So I had to make an appeal to Caesar. "It wasn't that I had anything against my own people.
I share Israel's hope. That is why I am held with this chain. So I have asked to see you and talk with you."
They replied, "We have not received any letters from Judea about you. None of our companions who came from there has reported or said anything bad about you.
But we want to hear what your ideas are. We know that people everywhere are talking against those who believe as you do."
They decided to meet Paul on a certain day. At that time even more people came to the place where he was staying. From morning until evening, he told them about God's kingdom and explained it to them. Using the Law of Moses and the Prophets, he tried to get them to believe in Jesus.
Some believed what he said. Others did not.
They didn't agree with each other. They began to leave after Paul had made a final statement. He said, "The Holy Spirit was right when he spoke to your people long ago. Through Isaiah the prophet the Spirit said,
" 'Go to your people. Say to them, "You will hear but never understand. You will see but never know what you are seeing."
These people's hearts have become stubborn. They can barely hear with their ears. They have closed their eyes. Otherwise they might see with their eyes. They might hear with their ears. They might understand with their hearts. They might turn, and then I would heal them.' #1(Isaiah 6:9,10)#2
"Here is what I want you to know. God has sent his salvation to people who are not Jews. And they will listen!"
For two whole years Paul stayed there in a house he rented. He welcomed all who came to see him.
He preached boldly about God's kingdom. No one could keep him from teaching people about the Lord Jesus Christ.