Acts 24:1-25

Acts 24:1-25 New International Version (NIV)

Five days later the high priest Ananias went down to Caesarea with some of the elders and a lawyer named Tertullus, and they brought their charges against Paul before the governor. When Paul was called in, Tertullus presented his case before Felix: “We have enjoyed a long period of peace under you, and your foresight has brought about reforms in this nation. Everywhere and in every way, most excellent Felix, we acknowledge this with profound gratitude. But in order not to weary you further, I would request that you be kind enough to hear us briefly. “We have found this man to be a troublemaker, stirring up riots among the Jews all over the world. He is a ringleader of the Nazarene sect and even tried to desecrate the temple; so we seized him. By examining him yourself you will be able to learn the truth about all these charges we are bringing against him.” The other Jews joined in the accusation, asserting that these things were true. When the governor motioned for him to speak, Paul replied: “I know that for a number of years you have been a judge over this nation; so I gladly make my defense. You can easily verify that no more than twelve days ago I went up to Jerusalem to worship. My accusers did not find me arguing with anyone at the temple, or stirring up a crowd in the synagogues or anywhere else in the city. And they cannot prove to you the charges they are now making against me. However, I admit that I worship the God of our ancestors as a follower of the Way, which they call a sect. I believe everything that is in accordance with the Law and that is written in the Prophets, and I have the same hope in God as these men themselves have, that there will be a resurrection of both the righteous and the wicked. So I strive always to keep my conscience clear before God and man. “After an absence of several years, I came to Jerusalem to bring my people gifts for the poor and to present offerings. I was ceremonially clean when they found me in the temple courts doing this. There was no crowd with me, nor was I involved in any disturbance. But there are some Jews from the province of Asia, who ought to be here before you and bring charges if they have anything against me. Or these who are here should state what crime they found in me when I stood before the Sanhedrin— unless it was this one thing I shouted as I stood in their presence: ‘It is concerning the resurrection of the dead that I am on trial before you today.’ ” Then Felix, who was well acquainted with the Way, adjourned the proceedings. “When Lysias the commander comes,” he said, “I will decide your case.” He ordered the centurion to keep Paul under guard but to give him some freedom and permit his friends to take care of his needs. Several days later Felix came with his wife Drusilla, who was Jewish. He sent for Paul and listened to him as he spoke about faith in Christ Jesus. As Paul talked about righteousness, self-control and the judgment to come, Felix was afraid and said, “That’s enough for now! You may leave. When I find it convenient, I will send for you.”

Acts 24:1-4-24-26 The Message (MSG)

Within five days, the Chief Priest Ananias arrived with a contingent of leaders, along with Tertullus, a trial lawyer. They presented the governor with their case against Paul. When Paul was called before the court, Tertullus spoke for the prosecution: “Most Honorable Felix, we are most grateful in all times and places for your wise and gentle rule. We are much aware that it is because of you and you alone that we enjoy all this peace and gain daily profit from your reforms. I’m not going to tire you out with a long speech. I beg your kind indulgence in listening to me. I’ll be quite brief. “We’ve found this man time and again disturbing the peace, stirring up riots against Jews all over the world, the ringleader of a seditious sect called Nazarenes. He’s a real bad apple, I must say. We caught him trying to defile our holy Temple and arrested him. You’ll be able to verify all these accusations when you examine him yourself.” The Jews joined in: “Hear, hear! That’s right!” The governor motioned to Paul that it was now his turn. Paul said, “I count myself fortunate to be defending myself before you, Governor, knowing how fair-minded you’ve been in judging us all these years. I’ve been back in the country only twelve days—you can check out these dates easily enough. I came with the express purpose of worshiping in Jerusalem on Pentecost, and I’ve been minding my own business the whole time. Nobody can say they saw me arguing in the Temple or working up a crowd in the streets. Not one of their charges can be backed up with evidence or witnesses. “But I do freely admit this: In regard to the Way, which they malign as a dead-end street, I serve and worship the very same God served and worshiped by all our ancestors and embrace everything written in all our Scriptures. And I admit to living in hopeful anticipation that God will raise the dead, both the good and the bad. If that’s my crime, my accusers are just as guilty as I am. “Believe me, I do my level best to keep a clear conscience before God and my neighbors in everything I do. I’ve been out of the country for a number of years and now I’m back. While I was away, I took up a collection for the poor and brought that with me, along with offerings for the Temple. It was while making those offerings that they found me quietly at my prayers in the Temple. There was no crowd, there was no disturbance. It was some Jews from around Ephesus who started all this trouble. And you’ll notice they’re not here today. They’re cowards, too cowardly to accuse me in front of you. “So ask these others what crime they’ve caught me in. Don’t let them hide behind this smooth-talking Tertullus. The only thing they have on me is that one sentence I shouted out in the council: ‘It’s because I believe in the resurrection that I’ve been hauled into this court!’ Does that sound to you like grounds for a criminal case?” Felix shilly-shallied. He knew far more about the Way than he let on, and could have settled the case then and there. But uncertain of his best move politically, he played for time. “When Captain Lysias comes down, I’ll decide your case.” He gave orders to the centurion to keep Paul in custody, but to more or less give him the run of the place and not prevent his friends from helping him. A few days later Felix and his wife, Drusilla, who was Jewish, sent for Paul and listened to him talk about a life of believing in Jesus Christ. As Paul continued to insist on right relations with God and his people, about a life of moral discipline and the coming Judgment, Felix felt things getting a little too close for comfort and dismissed him. “That’s enough for today. I’ll call you back when it’s convenient.” At the same time he was secretly hoping that Paul would offer him a substantial bribe. These conversations were repeated frequently.

Acts 24:1-25 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

After 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. After Paul had been summoned, Tertullus began to accuse him, saying to the governor, “ S ince we have through you attained much peace, and since by your providence reforms are being carried out for this nation, we acknowledge this in every way and everywhere, most excellent Felix, with all thankfulness. But, that I may not weary you any further, I beg you to grant us, by your kindness, a brief hearing. For we have found this man a real pest and a fellow who stirs up dissension among all the Jews throughout the world, and a ringleader of the sect of the Nazarenes. And he even tried to desecrate the temple; and then we arrested him. [We wanted to judge him according to our own Law. But Lysias the commander came along, and with much violence took him out of our hands, ordering 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.” The Jews also joined in the attack, asserting that these things were so. When the governor had nodded for him to speak, Paul responded: “ K nowing that for many years you have been a judge to this nation, I cheerfully make my defense, since you can take note of the fact that no more than twelve days ago I went up to Jerusalem to worship. Neither 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. Nor can they prove to you the charges of which they now accuse me. But 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; having a hope in God, which these men cherish themselves, that there shall certainly be a resurrection of both the righteous and the wicked. In view of this, I also do my best to maintain always a blameless conscience both before God and before men. Now after several years I came to bring alms to my nation and to present offerings; in which they found me occupied in the temple, having been purified, without any crowd or uproar. But there were some Jews from Asia— who ought to have been present before you and to make accusation, if they should have anything against me. Or else let these men themselves tell what misdeed they found when I stood before the Council, other 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.’ ” But Felix, having a more exact knowledge about the Way, put them off, saying, “When Lysias the commander comes down, I will decide your case.” Then 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. But 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. But 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.”

Acts 24:1-25 King James Version (KJV)

And after five days Ananias the high priest descended with the elders, and with a certain orator named Tertullus, who informed the governor against Paul. And when he was called forth, Tertullus began to accuse him, saying, Seeing that by thee we enjoy great quietness, and that very worthy deeds are done unto this nation by thy providence, We accept it always, and in all places, most noble Felix, with all thankfulness. Notwithstanding, that I be not further tedious unto thee, I pray thee that thou wouldest hear us of thy clemency a few words. For we have found this man a pestilent fellow, and a mover of sedition among all the Jews throughout the world, and a ringleader of the sect of the Nazarenes: Who also hath gone about to profane the temple: whom we took, and would have judged according to our law. But the chief captain Lysias came upon us, and with great violence took him away out of our hands, Commanding his accusers to come unto thee: by examining of whom thyself mayest take knowledge of all these things, whereof we accuse him. And the Jews also assented, saying that these things were so. Then Paul, after that the governor had beckoned unto him to speak, answered, Forasmuch as I know that thou hast been of many years a judge unto this nation, I do the more cheerfully answer for myself: Because that thou mayest understand, that there are yet but twelve days since I went up to Jerusalem for to worship. And they neither found me in the temple disputing with any man, neither raising up the people, neither in the synagogues, nor in the city: Neither can they prove the things whereof they now accuse me. But this I confess unto thee, that after the way which they call heresy, so worship I the God of my fathers, believing all things which are written in the law and in the prophets: And have hope toward God, which they themselves also allow, that there shall be a resurrection of the dead, both of the just and unjust. And herein do I exercise myself, to have always a conscience void of offence toward God, and toward men. Now after many years I came to bring alms to my nation, and offerings. Whereupon certain Jews from Asia found me purified in the temple, neither with multitude, nor with tumult. Who ought to have been here before thee, and object, if they had ought against me. Or else let these same here say, if they have found any evil doing in me, while I stood before the council, Except it be for this one voice, that I cried standing among them, Touching the resurrection of the dead I am called in question by you this day. And when Felix heard these things, having more perfect knowledge of that way, he deferred them, and said, When Lysias the chief captain shall come down, I will know the uttermost of your matter. And he commanded a centurion to keep Paul, and to let him have liberty, and that he should forbid none of his acquaintance to minister or come unto him. And after certain days, when Felix came with his wife Drusilla, which was a Jewess, he sent for Paul, and heard him concerning the faith in Christ. And as he reasoned of righteousness, temperance, and judgment to come, Felix trembled, and answered, Go thy way for this time; when I have a convenient season, I will call for thee.

Acts 24:1-25 New Century Version (NCV)

Five days later Ananias, the high priest, went to the city of Caesarea with some of the elders and a lawyer named Tertullus. They had come to make charges against Paul before the governor. Paul was called into the meeting, and Tertullus began to accuse him, saying, “Most Excellent Felix! Our people enjoy much peace because of you, and many wrong things in our country are being made right through your wise help. We accept these things always and in every place, and we are thankful for them. But not wanting to take any more of your time, I beg you to be kind and listen to our few words. We have found this man to be a troublemaker, stirring up his people everywhere in the world. He is a leader of the Nazarene group. Also, he was trying to make the Temple unclean, but we stopped him. [And we wanted to judge him by our own law. But the officer Lysias came and used much force to take him from us. And Lysias commanded those who wanted to accuse Paul to come to you.] By asking him questions yourself, you can decide if all these things are true.” The others agreed and said that all of this was true. When the governor made a sign for Paul to speak, Paul said, “Governor Felix, I know you have been a judge over this nation for a long time. So I am happy to defend myself before you. You can learn for yourself that I went to worship in Jerusalem only twelve days ago. Those who are accusing me did not find me arguing with anyone in the Temple or stirring up the people in the synagogues or in the city. They cannot prove the things they are saying against me now. But I will tell you this: I worship the God of our ancestors as a follower of the Way of Jesus. The others say that the Way of Jesus is not the right way. But I believe everything that is taught in the law of Moses and that is written in the books of the Prophets. I have the same hope in God that they have—the hope that all people, good and bad, will surely be raised from the dead. This is why I always try to do what I believe is right before God and people. “After being away from Jerusalem for several years, I went back to bring money to my people and to offer sacrifices. I was doing this when they found me in the Temple. I had finished the cleansing ceremony and had not made any trouble; no people were gathering around me. But there were some people from Asia who should be here, standing before you. If I have really done anything wrong, they are the ones who should accuse me. Or ask these people here if they found any wrong in me when I stood before the council in Jerusalem. But I did shout one thing when I stood before them: ‘You are judging me today because I believe that people will rise from the dead!’ ” Felix already understood much about the Way of Jesus. He stopped the trial and said, “When commander Lysias comes here, I will decide your case.” Felix told the officer to keep Paul guarded but to give him some freedom and to let his friends bring what he needed. After some days Felix came with his wife, Drusilla, who was Jewish, and asked for Paul to be brought to him. He listened to Paul talk about believing in Christ Jesus. But Felix became afraid when Paul spoke about living right, self-control, and the time when God will judge the world. He said, “Go away now. When I have more time, I will call for you.”

Acts 24:1-25 American Standard Version (ASV)

And after five days the high priest Ananias came down with certain elders, and with an orator, one Tertullus; and they informed the governor against Paul. And when he was called, Tertullus began to accuse him, saying, Seeing that by thee we enjoy much peace, and that by thy providence evils are corrected for this nation, we accept it in all ways and in all places, most excellent Felix, with all thankfulness. But, that I be not further tedious unto thee, I entreat thee to hear us of thy clemency a few words. For we have found this man a pestilent fellow, and a mover of insurrections among all the Jews throughout the world, and a ringleader of the sect of the Nazarenes: who moreover assayed to profane the temple: on whom also we laid hold: from whom thou wilt be able, by examining him thyself, to take knowledge of all these things whereof we accuse him. And the Jews also joined in the charge, affirming that these things were so. And when the governor had beckoned unto him to speak, Paul answered, Forasmuch as I know that thou hast been of many years a judge unto this nation, I cheerfully make my defence: seeing that thou canst take knowledge that it is not more than twelve days since I went up to worship at Jerusalem: and neither in the temple did they find me disputing with any man or stirring up a crowd, nor in the synagogues, nor in the city. Neither can they prove to thee the things whereof they now accuse me. But this I confess unto thee, that after the Way which they call a sect, so serve I the God of our fathers, believing all things which are according to the law, and which are written in the prophets; having hope toward God, which these also themselves look for, that there shall be a resurrection both of the just and unjust. Herein I also exercise myself to have a conscience void of offence toward God and men always. Now after some years I came to bring alms to my nation, and offerings: amidst which they found me purified in the temple, with no crowd, nor yet with tumult: but there were certain Jews from Asia— who ought to have been here before thee, and to make accusation, if they had aught against me. Or else let these men themselves say what wrong-doing they found when I stood before the council, except it be for this one voice, that I cried standing among them, Touching the resurrection of the dead I am called in question before you this day. But Felix, having more exact knowledge concerning the Way, deferred them, saying, When Lysias the chief captain shall come down, I will determine your matter. And he gave order to the centurion that he should be kept in charge, and should have indulgence; and not to forbid any of his friends to minister unto him. But after certain days, Felix came with Drusilla, his wife, who was a Jewess, and sent for Paul, and heard him concerning the faith in Christ Jesus. And as he reasoned of righteousness, and self-control, and the judgment to come, Felix was terrified, and answered, Go thy way for this time; and when I have a convenient season, I will call thee unto me.

Acts 24:1-25 Amplified Bible (AMP)

Five days later, the high priest Ananias came down [from Jerusalem to Caesarea] with some elders and an attorney named Tertullus [acting as spokesman and counsel]. They presented to the governor their [formal] charges against Paul. After Paul had been summoned, Tertullus began the complaint [against him], saying to the governor: “ S ince through you we have attained great peace, and since by your foresight reforms are being carried out for this nation, in every way and in every place, most excellent Felix, we acknowledge this with all gratitude. But so that I do not weary you further, I beg you to grant us, by your kindness, a brief hearing. For we have found this man to be a public menace and one who instigates dissension among all the Jews throughout the world, and a ringleader of the [heretical] sect of the Nazarenes. He even tried to desecrate the temple, but we took him into custody [ and we intended to judge him by our Law, but Lysias the commander came, and with great force took him out of our hands, and ordered his accusers to come before you. ] By interrogating him yourself concerning all these matters you will be able to determine [the truth about] these things with which we charge him.” The Jews also joined in the attack, declaring and insisting that these things were so. When the governor nodded for him to speak, Paul answered, “ K nowing that for many years you have been a judge over this nation, I make my defense cheerfully and with good courage. As you can easily verify, it has been no more than twelve days since I went up to Jerusalem to worship. Neither in the temple, nor in the synagogues, nor elsewhere in the city did they find me carrying on a discussion or disputing with anybody or causing a crowd to gather. Nor can they present evidence to you to prove what they now bring against me. But I confess this to you, that according to the Way, which they call a [divisive and heretical] sect, I do worship and serve the God of our fathers, [confidently] believing everything that is in accordance with the Law [of Moses] and that is written in the Prophets; having [the same] hope in God which these men cherish themselves, that there shall certainly be a resurrection of [the dead], both of the righteous and of the wicked. In view of this, I also do my best and strive always to have a clear conscience before God and before men. Now after several years I came [to Jerusalem] to bring to my people charitable contributions and offerings. They found me in the temple presenting these offerings, after I had undergone [the rites of] purification, without any crowd or uproar. But there were some Jews from [the west coast province of] Asia [Minor], who ought to have been here before you to present their charges, if they have anything against me. Or else let these men tell what crime they found [me guilty of] when I stood before the Council (Sanhedrin, Jewish High Court), other than for this one statement which I had shouted out as I stood among them, ‘For the resurrection of the dead I am on trial before you today.’ ” But Felix, having a rather accurate understanding about the Way, put them off, saying, “When Lysias the commander comes down, I will decide your case.” Then he ordered the centurion to keep Paul in custody, but to let him have some freedom, and [he told the centurion] not to stop any of his friends from providing for his needs. Several days later Felix came with his wife Drusilla, who was a Jewess. He sent for Paul and listened to him talk about faith in Christ Jesus. But as he was discussing righteousness, self-control [honorable behavior, personal integrity], and the judgment to come, Felix became frightened and said, “Go away for now, and when I find [a convenient] time I will send for you.”

Acts 24:1-25 The Passion Translation (TPT)

Five days later, Ananias the high priest arrived in Caesarea, accompanied by some Jewish elders and Tertullus, their prosecuting attorney. They were brought before the governor to present formal charges against Paul. After Paul was summoned, Tertullus accused him, saying, “Your Excellency Felix, under the shadow of your wise leadership we Jews have experienced a long period of peace. Because of your wise foresight, many reforms are coming to pass in our nation because of you, Most Honorable Felix. We deeply appreciate this and thank you very much. “So that I won’t weary you with a lengthy presentation, I beg you to hear our brief summary, with your customary graciousness. For we have found this man to be a contagious plague, a seditious man who continually stirs up riots among the Jews all over the world. He has become a ringleader of the sect known as the Nazarenes. He has even attempted to desecrate our temple, which is why we had him arrested. We sought to judge him according to our law, but Commander Lysias came with great force, snatched him away from our hands, and sent him here to you. He has ordered his accusers to come to you so that you could interrogate him and ascertain for yourself that all these charges we are bringing against him are true.” All the Jews present joined in the verbal attack, saying, “Yes, it’s true!” The governor motioned that it was Paul’s turn to speak, so he began to answer the accusations. “Because I know that you have been a judge over this nation for many years, I gladly respond in my defense. You can easily verify that about twelve days ago, I went to Jerusalem to worship. No one found me arguing with anyone or causing trouble among the people in the synagogues or in the temple or anywhere in the city. They are completely unable to prove these accusations they make against me. “But I do confess this to you: I worship the God of our Jewish ancestors as a follower of the Way, which they call a sect. For I believe everything that is written in the Law and the Prophets. And my hope is in God, the same hope that even my accusers have embraced, the hope of a resurrection from the dead of both the righteous and the unrighteous. That’s why I seek with all my heart to have a clean conscience toward God and toward others. “After being away from Jerusalem for several years, I returned to bring to my people gifts for the poor. I was in the temple, ritually purified and presenting my offering to God, when they seized me. I had no noisy crowd around me, and I wasn’t causing trouble or making any kind of disturbance whatsoever. It was a group of Jews from western Turkey who were being unruly; they are the ones who should be here now to bring their charges if they have anything against me. Or at least these men standing before you should clearly state what crime they found me guilty of when I stood before the Jewish supreme council, unless it’s the one thing I passionately spoke out when I stood among them. I am on trial today only because of my belief in the resurrection of the dead.” Felix, who was well acquainted with the facts about the Way, concluded the hearing with these words: “I will decide your case after Commander Lysias arrives.” He then ordered the captain to keep Paul in protective custody, but to give him a measure of freedom, he allowed any of his friends to visit him and help take care of his needs. Several days later, Felix came back with his wife, Drusilla, who was Jewish. They sent for Paul and listened as he shared with them about faith in Jesus, the Anointed One. As Paul spoke about true righteousness, self-control, and the coming judgment, Felix became terrified and said, “Leave me for now. I’ll send for you later when it’s more convenient.”