Acts 20; Acts 21; Acts 22

1 When the trouble stopped, Paul sent for the followers to come to him. After he encouraged them and then told them good-bye, he left and went to the country of Macedonia. 2 He said many things to strengthen the followers in the different places on his way through Macedonia. Then he went to Greece, 3 where he stayed for three months. He was ready to sail for Syria, but some Jews were planning something against him. So Paul decided to go back through Macedonia to Syria. 4 The men who went with him were Sopater son of Pyrrhus, from the city of Berea; Aristarchus and Secundus, from the city of Thessalonica; Gaius, from Derbe; Timothy; and Tychicus and Trophimus, two men from the country of Asia. 5 These men went on ahead and waited for us at Troas. 6 We sailed from Philippi after the Feast of Unleavened Bread. Five days later we met them in Troas, where we stayed for seven days. 7 On the first day of the week, we all met together to break bread, and Paul spoke to the group. Because he was planning to leave the next day, he kept on talking until midnight. 8 We were all together in a room upstairs, and there were many lamps in the room. 9 A young man named Eutychus was sitting in the window. As Paul continued talking, Eutychus was falling into a deep sleep. Finally, he went sound asleep and fell to the ground from the third floor. When they picked him up, he was dead. 10 Paul went down to Eutychus, knelt down, and put his arms around him. He said, "Don't worry. He is alive now." 11 Then Paul went upstairs again, broke bread, and ate. He spoke to them a long time, until it was early morning, and then he left. 12 They took the young man home alive and were greatly comforted. 13 We went on ahead of Paul and sailed for the city of Assos, where he wanted to join us on the ship. Paul planned it this way because he wanted to go to Assos by land. 14 When he met us there, we took him aboard and went to Mitylene. 15 We sailed from Mitylene and the next day came to a place near Kios. The following day we sailed to Samos, and the next day we reached Miletus. 16 Paul had already decided not to stop at Ephesus, because he did not want to stay too long in the country of Asia. He was hurrying to be in Jerusalem on the day of Pentecost, if that were possible. 17 Now from Miletus Paul sent to Ephesus and called for the elders of the church. 18 When they came to him, he said, "You know about my life from the first day I came to Asia. You know the way I lived all the time I was with you. 19 The Jews made plans against me, which troubled me very much. But you know I always served the Lord unselfishly, and I often cried. 20 You know I preached to you and did not hold back anything that would help you. You know that I taught you in public and in your homes. 21 I warned both Jews and Greeks to change their lives and turn to God and believe in our Lord Jesus. 22 But now I must obey the Holy Spirit and go to Jerusalem. I don't know what will happen to me there. 23 I know only that in every city the Holy Spirit tells me that troubles and even jail wait for me. 24 I don't care about my own life. The most important thing is that I complete my mission, the work that the Lord Jesus gave me -- to tell people the Good News about God's grace. 25 "And now, I know that none of you among whom I was preaching the kingdom of God will ever see me again. 26 So today I tell you that if any of you should be lost, I am not responsible, 27 because I have told you everything God wants you to know. 28 Be careful for yourselves and for all the people the Holy Spirit has given to you to care for. You must be like shepherds to the church of God, which he bought with the death of his own son. 29 I know that after I leave, some people will come like wild wolves and try to destroy the flock. 30 Also, some from your own group will rise up and twist the truth and will lead away followers after them. 31 So be careful! Always remember that for three years, day and night, I never stopped warning each of you, and I often cried over you. 32 "Now I am putting you in the care of God and the message about his grace. It is able to give you strength, and it will give you the blessings God has for all his holy people. 33 When I was with you, I never wanted anyone's money or fine clothes. 34 You know I always worked to take care of my own needs and the needs of those who were with me. 35 I showed you in all things that you should work as I did and help the weak. I taught you to remember the words Jesus said: 'It is more blessed to give than to receive.'" 36 When Paul had said this, he knelt down with all of them and prayed. 37 38 And they all cried because Paul had said they would never see him again. They put their arms around him and kissed him. Then they went with him to the ship.
1 After we all said good-bye to them, we sailed straight to the island of Cos. The next day we reached Rhodes, and from there we went to Patara. 2 There we found a ship going to Phoenicia, so we went aboard and sailed away. 3 We sailed near the island of Cyprus, seeing it to the north, but we sailed on to Syria. We stopped at Tyre because the ship needed to unload its cargo there. 4 We found some followers in Tyre and stayed with them for seven days. Through the Holy Spirit they warned Paul not to go to Jerusalem. 5 When we finished our visit, we left and continued our trip. All the followers, even the women and children, came outside the city with us. After we all knelt on the beach and prayed, 6 we said good-bye and got on the ship, and the followers went back home. 7 We continued our trip from Tyre and arrived at Ptolemais, where we greeted the believers and stayed with them for a day. 8 The next day we left Ptolemais and went to the city of Caesarea. There we went into the home of Philip the preacher, one of the seven helpers, and stayed with him. 9 He had four unmarried daughters who had the gift of prophesying. 10 After we had been there for some time, a prophet named Agabus arrived from Judea. 11 He came to us and borrowed Paul's belt and used it to tie his own hands and feet. He said, "The Holy Spirit says, 'This is how the Jews in Jerusalem will tie up the man who wears this belt. Then they will give him to those who are not Jews.'" 12 When we all heard this, we and the people there begged Paul not to go to Jerusalem. 13 But he said, "Why are you crying and making me so sad? I am not only ready to be tied up in Jerusalem, I am ready to die for the Lord Jesus!" 14 We could not persuade him to stay away from Jerusalem. So we stopped begging him and said, "We pray that what the Lord wants will be done." 15 After this, we got ready and started on our way to Jerusalem. 16 Some of the followers from Caesarea went with us and took us to the home of Mnason, where we would stay. He was from Cyprus and was one of the first followers. 17 In Jerusalem the believers were glad to see us. 18 The next day Paul went with us to visit James, and all the elders were there. 19 Paul greeted them and told them everything God had done among the non-Jewish people through him. 20 When they heard this, they praised God. Then they said to Paul, "Brother, you can see that many thousands of Jews have become believers. And they think it is very important to obey the law of Moses. 21 They have heard about your teaching, that you tell the Jews who live among those who are not Jews to leave the law of Moses. They have heard that you tell them not to circumcise their children and not to obey Jewish customs. 22 What should we do? They will learn that you have come. 23 So we will tell you what to do: Four of our men have made a promise to God. 24 Take these men with you and share in their cleansing ceremony. Pay their expenses so they can shave their heads. Then it will prove to everyone that what they have heard about you is not true and that you follow the law of Moses in your own life. 25 We have already sent a letter to the non-Jewish believers. The letter said: 'Do not eat food that has been offered to idols, or blood, or animals that have been strangled. Do not take part in sexual sin.'" 26 The next day Paul took the four men and shared in the cleansing ceremony with them. Then he went to the Temple and announced the time when the days of the cleansing ceremony would be finished. On the last day an offering would be given for each of the men. 27 When the seven days were almost over, some Jews from Asia saw Paul at the Temple. They caused all the people to be upset and grabbed Paul. 28 They shouted, "People of Israel, help us! This is the man who goes everywhere teaching against the law of Moses, against our people, and against this Temple. Now he has brought some Greeks into the Temple and has made this holy place unclean!" 29 (The Jews said this because they had seen Trophimus, a man from Ephesus, with Paul in Jerusalem. The Jews thought that Paul had brought him into the Temple.) 30 All the people in Jerusalem became upset. Together they ran, took Paul, and dragged him out of the Temple. The Temple doors were closed immediately. 31 While they were trying to kill Paul, the commander of the Roman army in Jerusalem learned that there was trouble in the whole city. 32 Immediately he took some officers and soldiers and ran to the place where the crowd was gathered. When the people saw them, they stopped beating Paul. 33 The commander went to Paul and arrested him. He told his soldiers to tie Paul with two chains. Then he asked who he was and what he had done wrong. 34 Some in the crowd were yelling one thing, and some were yelling another. Because of all this confusion and shouting, the commander could not learn what had happened. So he ordered the soldiers to take Paul to the army building. 35 When Paul came to the steps, the soldiers had to carry him because the people were ready to hurt him. 36 The whole mob was following them, shouting, "Kill him!" 37 As the soldiers were about to take Paul into the army building, he spoke to the commander, "May I say something to you?" The commander said, "Do you speak Greek? 38 I thought you were the Egyptian who started some trouble against the government not long ago and led four thousand killers out to the desert." 39 Paul said, "No, I am a Jew from Tarsus in the country of Cilicia. I am a citizen of that important city. Please, let me speak to the people." 40 The commander gave permission, so Paul stood on the steps and waved his hand to quiet the people. When there was silence, he spoke to them in the Jewish language.
1 Paul said, "Friends, fellow Jews, listen to my defense to you." 2 When the Jews heard him speaking the Jewish language, they became very quiet. Paul said, 3 "I am a Jew, born in Tarsus in the country of Cilicia, but I grew up in this city. I was a student of Gamaliel, who carefully taught me everything about the law of our ancestors. I was very serious about serving God, just as are all of you here today. 4 I persecuted the people who followed the Way of Jesus, and some of them were even killed. I arrested men and women and put them in jail. 5 The high priest and the whole council of older Jewish leaders can tell you this is true. They gave me letters to the Jewish brothers in Damascus. So I was going there to arrest these people and bring them back to Jerusalem to be punished. 6 "About noon when I came near Damascus, a bright light from heaven suddenly flashed all around me. 7 I fell to the ground and heard a voice saying, 'Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me?' 8 I asked, 'Who are you, Lord?' The voice said, 'I am Jesus from Nazareth whom you are persecuting.' 9 Those who were with me did not hear the voice, but they saw the light. 10 I said, 'What shall I do, Lord?' The Lord answered, 'Get up and go to Damascus. There you will be told about all the things I have planned for you to do.' 11 I could not see, because the bright light had made me blind. So my companions led me into Damascus. 12 "There a man named Ananias came to me. He was a religious man; he obeyed the law of Moses, and all the Jews who lived there respected him. 13 He stood by me and said, 'Brother Saul, see again!' Immediately I was able to see him. 14 He said, 'The God of our ancestors chose you long ago to know his plan, to see the Righteous One, and to hear words from him. 15 You will be his witness to all people, telling them about what you have seen and heard. 16 Now, why wait any longer? Get up, be baptized, and wash your sins away, trusting in him to save you.' 17 "Later, when I returned to Jerusalem, I was praying in the Temple, and I saw a vision. 18 I saw the Lord saying to me, 'Hurry! Leave Jerusalem now! The people here will not accept the truth about me.' 19 But I said, 'Lord, they know that in every synagogue I put the believers in jail and beat them. 20 They also know I was there when Stephen, your witness, was killed. I stood there agreeing and holding the coats of those who were killing him!' 21 But the Lord said to me, 'Leave now. I will send you far away to the non-Jewish people.'" 22 The crowd listened to Paul until he said this. Then they began shouting, "Kill him! Get him out of the world! He should not be allowed to live!" 23 They shouted, threw off their coats, and threw dust into the air. 24 Then the commander ordered the soldiers to take Paul into the army building and beat him. He wanted to make Paul tell why the people were shouting against him like this. 25 But as the soldiers were tying him up, preparing to beat him, Paul said to an officer nearby, "Do you have the right to beat a Roman citizenn who has not been proven guilty?" 26 When the officer heard this, he went to the commander and reported it. The officer said, "Do you know what you are doing? This man is a Roman citizen." 27 The commander came to Paul and said, "Tell me, are you really a Roman citizen?" He answered, "Yes." 28 The commander said, "I paid a lot of money to become a Roman citizen." But Paul said, "I was born a citizen." 29 The men who were preparing to question Paul moved away from him immediately. The commander was frightened because he had already tied Paul, and Paul was a Roman citizen. 30 The next day the commander decided to learn why the Jews were accusing Paul. So he ordered the leading priests and the Jewish council to meet. The commander took Paul's chains off. Then he brought Paul out and stood him before their meeting.
California - Do Not Sell My Personal Information  California - CCPA Notice