Acts 23:1

Paul Before the Sanhedrin

1 Paul looked straight at the Sanhedrin and said, “My brothers, I have fulfilled my duty to God in all good conscience to this day.”

Acts 23:1 in Other Translations

KJV
1 And Paul, earnestly beholding the council, said, Men and brethren, I have lived in all good conscience before God until this day.
ESV
1 And looking intently at the council, Paul said, "Brothers, I have lived my life before God in all good conscience up to this day."
NLT
1 Gazing intently at the high council, Paul began: “Brothers, I have always lived before God with a clear conscience!”
MSG
1 Paul surveyed the members of the council with a steady gaze, and then said his piece: "Friends, I've lived with a clear conscience before God all my life, up to this very moment."
CSB
1 Paul looked intently at the Sanhedrin and said, "Brothers, I have lived my life before God in all good conscience until this day."

Acts 23:1 Meaning and Commentary

Acts 23:1

And Paul earnestly beholding the council
Fastening his eyes upon them, looking wistly and intently at them, and thereby discovering a modest cheerfulness, and a becoming boldness, confidence, and intrepidity, as being not conscious of any guilt, and well assured of the goodness of his cause:

said, men and brethren;
see ( Acts 22:1 ) .

I have lived in all good conscience before God until this day;
not only from the time of his conversion, but throughout the whole of his life; for though, strictly speaking, there is no good conscience but what is awakened by the Spirit of God, and is unprincipled by his grace, and is purged from sin by the blood of Christ; in which sense he could only have a good conscience, since he believed in Christ; yet whereas in his state of unregeneracy, and even while he was a blasphemer, and persecutor, he did not act contrary to the dictates of his conscience, but according to them, in which his view was to the glory of God, and the honour of his law; he therefore says he lived before God, or unto God, in all good conscience, though an erroneous and mistaken one; he thought he ought to do what he did; and what he did, he did with a zeal for God though it was not according to knowledge: besides, the apostle has here respect to his outward moral conversation, which, before and after conversion, was very strict, and even blameless, at least unblemished before men; nobody could charge him with any notorious crime, though he did not live without sin in the sight of the omniscient God.

Acts 23:1 In-Context

1 Paul looked straight at the Sanhedrin and said, “My brothers, I have fulfilled my duty to God in all good conscience to this day.”
2 At this the high priest Ananias ordered those standing near Paul to strike him on the mouth.
3 Then Paul said to him, “God will strike you, you whitewashed wall! You sit there to judge me according to the law, yet you yourself violate the law by commanding that I be struck!”
4 Those who were standing near Paul said, “How dare you insult God’s high priest!”
5 Paul replied, “Brothers, I did not realize that he was the high priest; for it is written: ‘Do not speak evil about the ruler of your people.’ ”

Cross References 3

  • 1. Acts 22:30
  • 2. S Acts 22:5
  • 3. Acts 24:16; 1 Corinthians 4:4; 2 Corinthians 1:12; 1 Timothy 1:5,19; 1 Timothy 3:9; 2 Timothy 1:3; Hebrews 9:14; Hebrews 10:22; Hebrews 13:18; 1 Peter 3:16,21