Paul’s Defense Before Agrippa
1So #See ch. 9:15Agrippa said to Paul, “You have permission to speak for yourself.” Then Paul stretched out his hand and made his defense:
2“I consider myself fortunate that it is before you, King Agrippa, I am going to make my defense today #ch. 25:7, 19; [ver. 7]against all the accusations of the Jews, 3especially because you are familiar with all the #See ch. 6:14 customs and #See ch. 18:15controversies of the Jews. Therefore I beg you to listen to me patiently.
4 # [Gal. 1:13] “My manner of life from my youth, spent from the beginning among #ch. 24:17; 28:19my own nation and in Jerusalem, is known by all the Jews. 5They have known for a long time, if they are willing to testify, that #ch. 22:3 according to the strictest #See ch. 24:5 party of our #James 1:26, 27 religion I have lived as #ch. 23:6a Pharisee. 6And now I stand here on trial because of my hope in #See ch. 13:32the promise made by God to our fathers, 7#[ch. 2:33; Heb. 10:36; 11:13, 39] to which #Matt. 19:28; Luke 22:30; James 1:1; Rev. 21:12; [Ezra 6:17] our twelve tribes hope to #Phil. 3:11 attain, as they earnestly worship night and day. And for this hope #ver. 2I am accused by Jews, O king! 8Why is it thought #[ch. 17:3; 1 Cor. 15:12]incredible by any of you that God raises the dead?
1 Tim. 1:13; [John 16:2]; See ch. 3:17 “I myself was convinced that I ought to do many things in opposing the name of #ch. 22:8Jesus of Nazareth. 10#See ch. 8:3 And I did so in Jerusalem. I not only locked up many of the saints in prison after receiving authority #ver. 12; ch. 9:1, 2, 14, 21; 22:4, 5 from the chief priests, but #See ch. 22:20when they were put to death I cast my vote against them. 11And #ch. 22:19 I punished them often in all the synagogues and tried to make them #See ch. 13:45 blaspheme, and #ch. 9:1 in raging fury against them I #ch. 22:5persecuted them even to foreign cities.
Paul Tells of His Conversion
12“In this connection #For ver. 12-18, see ch. 9:3-8; 22:6-11I journeyed to Damascus with the authority and commission of the chief priests. 13At midday, O king, I saw on the way a light from heaven, brighter than the sun, that shone around me and those who journeyed with me. 14And when we had all fallen to the ground, I heard a voice saying to me #ch. 21:40; 22:2in the Hebrew language,#26:14 Or the Hebrew dialect (probably Aramaic) ‘Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me? It is hard for you to kick against the goads.’ 15And I said, ‘Who are you, Lord?’ And the Lord said, ‘I am Jesus whom you are persecuting. 16But rise and #Ezek. 2:1; Dan. 10:11 stand upon your feet, for I have appeared to you for this purpose, #See ch. 22:14, 15to appoint you as a servant and witness to the things in which you have seen me and to those in which I will appear to you, 17#[ch. 12:11; 1 Chr. 16:35; Jer. 1:8, 19; 15:20] delivering you from your people and from the Gentiles—#See ch. 9:15 to whom I #[Rom. 11:13; 1 Tim. 2:7]am sending you 18#Isa. 35:5; 42:7 to open their eyes, so that they may turn from darkness to light and from #See Luke 22:53; 1 Cor. 5:5 the power of Satan to God, that they may receive #See ch. 5:31 forgiveness of sins and #See ch. 20:32 a place among those who are sanctified #[ch. 15:9; 2 Thess. 2:13]by faith in me.’
19“Therefore, O King Agrippa, I was not disobedient to #ver. 13the heavenly vision, 20but declared first #ch. 9:19, 20 to those in Damascus, #ch. 9:26-29; 22:17-20 then in Jerusalem and throughout all the region of Judea, and also #See ch. 13:46 to the Gentiles, that they should #See ch. 2:38 repent and #See ch. 14:15 turn to God, performing deeds #Matt. 3:8; Luke 3:8in keeping with their repentance. 21For this reason #ch. 21:27, 30, 31; 24:18the Jews seized me in the temple and tried to kill me. 22#2 Cor. 1:10; [Heb. 13:5, 6] To this day I have had the help that comes from God, and so #[Eph. 6:13] I stand here testifying both to small and great, saying nothing but what #See ch. 10:43; 24:14the prophets and Moses said would come to pass: 23#[Luke 24:26; Heb. 2:10]; See ch. 3:18 that the Christ #[John 12:34] must suffer and that, #1 Cor. 15:20, 23; Col. 1:18; Rev. 1:5 by being the first #Rom. 1:4 to rise from the dead, #[Eph. 2:17] he would proclaim #ver. 18; See Luke 2:32light both to our people and to the Gentiles.”
24And as he was saying these things in his defense, Festus said with a loud voice, “Paul, #ch. 12:15; [ver. 8; ch. 17:32; 2 Kgs. 9:11; Jer. 29:26; Mark 3:21; John 10:20; 1 Cor. 1:23; 2:14; 4:10]you are out of your mind; your great learning is driving you out of your mind.” 25But Paul said, “I am not out of my mind, #See ch. 24:2 most excellent Festus, but I am speaking #[2 Pet. 1:16] true and #[2 Cor. 5:13]rational words. 26For #[ver. 3]the king knows about these things, and to him I speak boldly. For I am persuaded that none of these things has escaped his notice, for this has not been done in a corner. 27King Agrippa, do you believe the prophets? I know that you believe.” 28And Agrippa said to Paul, “In a short time would you persuade me to be #ch. 11:26; 1 Pet. 4:16a Christian?”#26:28 Or In a short time you would persuade me to act like a Christian! 29And Paul said, “Whether short or long, I would to God that not only you but also all who hear me this day #[1 Cor. 7:7] might become such as I am—except for #See ch. 21:33these chains.”
30Then the king rose, and #See ch. 23:24the governor and Bernice and those who were sitting with them. 31And when they had withdrawn, they said to one another, #See ch. 23:29“This man is doing nothing to deserve death or imprisonment.” 32And Agrippa said to Festus, #ch. 28:18 “This man could have been set #ch. 25:11; 28:19 free if he had not appealed #See ch. 9:15to Caesar.”