Acts 22:28

28 Then the commander said, “I had to pay a lot of money for my citizenship.” “But I was born a citizen,” Paul replied.

Acts 22:28 in Other Translations

KJV
28 And the chief captain answered, With a great sum obtained I this freedom. And Paul said, But I was free born.
ESV
28 The tribune answered, "I bought this citizenship for a large sum." Paul said, "But I am a citizen by birth."
NLT
28 “I am, too,” the commander muttered, “and it cost me plenty!” Paul answered, “But I am a citizen by birth!”
MSG
28 The captain was impressed. "I paid a huge sum for my citizenship. How much did it cost you?" "Nothing," said Paul. "It cost me nothing. I was free from the day of my birth."
CSB
28 The commander replied, "I bought this citizenship for a large amount of money." "But I myself was born a citizen," Paul said.

Acts 22:28 Meaning and Commentary

Acts 22:28

And the chief captain answered, with a great sum obtained I
this freedom
For, it seems, he was not a Roman born, but very likely a Grecian, or Syrian, by his name Lysias; and as all things were now venal at Rome, the freedom of the city was to be bought with money, though a large sum was insisted on for it: this the chief captain said, as wondering that so mean a person, and who he understood was a Jew by birth, should be able to procure such a privilege, which cost him so much money:

and Paul said, but I was free born;
being born at Tarsus; which, as Pliny says F12, was a free city, and which had its freedom given it by Mark Antony, and which was before the birth of Paul; and therefore his parents being of this city, and free, he was born so.


FOOTNOTES:

F12 Nat. Hist. l. 5. c. 27.

Acts 22:28 In-Context

26 When the centurion heard this, he went to the commander and reported it. “What are you going to do?” he asked. “This man is a Roman citizen.”
27 The commander went to Paul and asked, “Tell me, are you a Roman citizen?” “Yes, I am,” he answered.
28 Then the commander said, “I had to pay a lot of money for my citizenship.” “But I was born a citizen,” Paul replied.
29 Those who were about to interrogate him withdrew immediately. The commander himself was alarmed when he realized that he had put Paul, a Roman citizen, in chains.
30 The commander wanted to find out exactly why Paul was being accused by the Jews. So the next day he released him and ordered the chief priests and all the members of the Sanhedrin to assemble. Then he brought Paul and had him stand before them.