"In this connection 1I journeyed to Damascus with the authority and commission of the chief priests.
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At midday, O king, I saw on the way a light from heaven, brighter than the sun, that shone around me and those who journeyed with me.
And when we had all fallen to the ground, I heard a voice saying to me 2in the Hebrew language, 'Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me? It is hard for you to kick against the goads.'
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And I said, 'Who are you, Lord?' And the Lord said, 'I am Jesus whom you are persecuting.
But rise and 3stand upon your feet, for I have appeared to you for this purpose, 4to appoint you as a servant and witness to the things in which you have seen me and to those in which I will appear to you,
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5delivering you from your people and from the Gentiles--6to whom I 7am sending you
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8to open their eyes, so that they may turn from darkness to light and from 9the power of Satan to God, that they may receive 10forgiveness of sins and 11a place among those who are sanctified 12by faith in me.'
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"Therefore, O King Agrippa, I was not disobedient to 13the heavenly vision,
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but declared first 14to those in Damascus, 15then in Jerusalem and throughout all the region of Judea, and also 16to the Gentiles, that they should 17repent and 18turn to God, performing deeds 19in keeping with their repentance.
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For this reason 20the Jews seized me in the temple and tried to kill me.
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21To this day I have had the help that comes from God, and so 22I stand here testifying both to small and great, saying nothing but what 23the prophets and Moses said would come to pass:
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24that the Christ 25must suffer and that, 26by being the first 27to rise from the dead, 28he would proclaim 29light both to our people and to the Gentiles."
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And as he was saying these things in his defense, Festus said with a loud voice, "Paul, 30you are out of your mind; your great learning is driving you out of your mind."
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But Paul said, "I am not out of my mind, 31most excellent Festus, but I am speaking 32true and 33rational words.
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For 34the king knows about these things, and to him I speak boldly. For I am persuaded that none of these things has escaped his notice, for this has not been done in a corner.
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King Agrippa, do you believe the prophets? I know that you believe."
And Agrippa said to Paul, "In a short time would you persuade me to be 35a Christian?"
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And Paul said, "Whether short or long, I would to God that not only you but also all who hear me this day 36might become such as I am--except for 37these chains."
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Then the king rose, and 38the governor and Bernice and those who were sitting with them.
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And when they had withdrawn, they said to one another, 39"This man is doing nothing to deserve death or imprisonment."
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And Agrippa said to Festus, 40"This man could have been set 41free if he had not appealed 42to Caesar."
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