Paul before Felix
1After five days the high priest Ananias came down with some elders, with an attorney named Tertullus, and they brought charges to the governor against Paul. 2After Paul had been summoned, Tertullus began to accuse him, saying to the governor,
“Since we have through you attained much peace, and since by your providence reforms are being carried out for this nation, 3we acknowledge this in every way and everywhere, most excellent Felix, with all thankfulness. 4But, that I may not weary you any further, I beg you to grant us, by your kindness, a brief hearing. 5For we have found this man a real pest and a fellow who stirs up dissension among all the Jews throughout #Lit the inhabited earththe world, and a ringleader of the sect of the Nazarenes. 6And he even tried to desecrate the temple; and then we arrested him. [#The early mss do not contain the remainder of v 6, v 7, nor the first part of v 8We wanted to judge him according to our own Law. 7But Lysias the commander came along, and with much violence took him out of our hands, 8ordering his accusers to come before you.] By examining him yourself concerning all these matters you will be able to ascertain the things of which we accuse him.” 9The Jews also joined in the attack, asserting that these things were so.
10When the governor had nodded for him to speak, Paul responded:
“Knowing that for many years you have been a judge to this nation, I cheerfully make my defense, 11since you can take note of the fact that no more than twelve days ago I went up to Jerusalem to worship. 12Neither in the temple, nor in the synagogues, nor in the city itself did they find me carrying on a discussion with anyone or causing a riot. 13Nor can they prove to you the charges of which they now accuse me. 14But this I admit to you, that according to the Way which they call a sect I do serve the God of our fathers, believing everything that is in accordance with the Law and that is written in the Prophets; 15having a hope in God, which these men cherish themselves, that there shall certainly be a resurrection of both the righteous and the wicked. 16In view of this, I also do my best to maintain always a blameless conscience both before God and before men. 17Now after several years I came to bring #Or gifts to charityalms to my nation and to present offerings; 18in which they found me occupied in the temple, having been purified, without any crowd or uproar. But there were some Jews from Asia— 19who ought to have been present before you and to make accusation, if they should have anything against me. 20Or else let these men themselves tell what misdeed they found when I stood before the Council, 21other than for this one statement which I shouted out while standing among them, ‘For the resurrection of the dead I am on trial before you today.’ ”
22But Felix, having a more exact knowledge about the Way, put them off, saying, “When Lysias the #I.e. chiliarch, in command of one thousand troopscommander comes down, I will decide your case.” 23Then he gave orders to the centurion for him to be kept in custody and yet have some freedom, and not to prevent any of his friends from ministering to him.
24But some days later Felix arrived with Drusilla, his wife who was a Jewess, and sent for Paul and heard him speak about faith in Christ Jesus. 25But as he was discussing righteousness, self-control and the judgment to come, Felix became frightened and said, “Go away for the present, and when I find time I will summon you.” 26At the same time too, he was hoping that money would be given him by Paul; therefore he also used to send for him quite often and converse with him. 27But after two years had passed, Felix was succeeded by Porcius Festus, and wishing to do the Jews a favor, Felix left Paul imprisoned.
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