James Killed and Peter Imprisoned
1About that time King Herod extended his hands to harm certain ones from the church. 2#Mt 20:23; Heb 11:37He killed James the brother of John with the sword. 3#Ex 23:15; Ac 24:27Seeing that it pleased the Jews, he proceeded further to arrest Peter also. This happened during the Days of Unleavened Bread. 4#Lk 21:12When he had seized him, he put him in prison and handed him over to four squads of soldiers to guard him, intending to bring him before the people after the Passover.
5#2Co 1:11So Peter was kept in prison. But the church prayed to God without ceasing for him.
Peter Delivered From Prison
6#Ac 21:33The very night when Herod would have brought him out, Peter was sleeping between two soldiers, bound with two chains. And the guards before the door were securing the prison. 7#Ac 16:26; 5:19And suddenly an angel of the Lord approached him, and a light shone in the prison. He struck Peter on the side and woke him up, saying, “Rise up, quickly.” And the chains fell off his hands.
8Then the angel said to him, “Dress yourself and put your sandals on.” And he did so. Then he said to him, “Wrap your cloak around you and follow me.” 9#Ps 126:1He went out and followed him, and did not know that what was done by the angel was real, but thought he was seeing a vision. 10#Ac 5:19; 16:26When they had passed the first and the second guards, they came to the iron gate leading to the city, which opened to them by itself. And they went out and went forward one street. And immediately the angel left him.
11#Da 3:28; 6:22When Peter had come to himself, he said, “Now I certainly know that the Lord has sent His angel and delivered me from the hand of Herod and from all that the Jewish people were expecting.”
12#Ac 12:5; 12:25Realizing this, he came to the house of Mary, the mother of John, whose other name was Mark, where many were gathered together praying. 13As Peter knocked at the door of the porch, a servant girl named Rhoda came to answer. 14#Lk 24:41When she recognized Peter’s voice, from joy she did not open the door, but ran in and announced that Peter was standing at the door.
15#Mt 18:10They said to her, “You are insane.” But she insisted that it was really so. So they said, “It is his angel.”
16But Peter continued knocking. And when they opened the door and saw him, they were astonished. 17#Ac 13:16; 15:13Motioning to them with his hand to be quiet, he described to them how the Lord had led him out of the prison. And he said, “Go, tell these things to James and to the brothers.” Then he departed and went to another place.
18Now when day came, there was a great disturbance among the soldiers about what had become of Peter. 19#Ac 16:27When Herod had searched for him and did not find him, he examined the guards and commanded that they should be put to death.
Then he went down from Judea to Caesarea, and stayed there.
The Death of Herod
20#Eze 27:17; Ezr 3:7Now Herod was very angry with the people of Tyre and Sidon. But they came to him in unity, and having made Blastus, the king’s personal servant, their friend, they asked for peace, because their country was fed by the king’s country.
21On an appointed day, Herod, dressed in royal apparel, sat on his throne and gave a public speech to them. 22The mob shouted, “It is the voice of a god, and not of a man!” 23#1Sa 25:38; 2Sa 24:16–17Immediately an angel of the Lord struck him, because he did not give God the glory. And he was eaten by worms and died.
24#Ac 6:7; 19:20But the word of God spread and increased.
25#Ac 12:12; 4:36When Barnabas and Saul had fulfilled their ministry, they returned from Jerusalem and took with them John, whose surname was Mark.