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The Acts of the Apostles, chapter 25, New English Translation and King James Version

Chapter 25

New English Translation


   Paul Appeals to Caesar
   1 Now three days after Festus arrived in the province, he went up to Jerusalem from Caesarea. 2 So the chief priests and the most prominent men of the Jews brought formal charges against Paul to him. 3 Requesting him to do them a favor against Paul, they urged Festus to summon him to Jerusalem, planning an ambush to kill him along the way. 4 Then Festus replied that Paul was being kept at Caesarea, and he himself intended to go there shortly. 5 "So, " he said, "let your leaders go down there with me, and if this man has done anything wrong, they may bring charges against him."
   6 After Festus had stayed not more than eight or ten days among them, he went down to Caesarea, and the next day he sat on the judgment seat and ordered Paul to be brought. 7 When he arrived, the Jews who had come down from Jerusalem stood around him, bringing many serious charges that they were not able to prove. 8 Paul said in his defense, "I have committed no offense against the Jewish law or against the temple or against Caesar." 9 But Festus, wanting to do the Jews a favor, asked Paul, "Are you willing to go up to Jerusalem and be tried before me there on these charges?" 10 Paul replied, "I am standing before Caesar's judgment seat, where I should be tried. I have done nothing wrong to the Jews, as you also know very well. 11 If then I am in the wrong and have done anything that deserves death, I am not trying to escape dying, but if not one of their charges against me is true, no one can hand me over to them. I appeal to Caesar!" 12 Then, after conferring with his council, Festus replied, "You have appealed to Caesar; to Caesar you will go!"
   Festus Asks King Agrippa for Advice
   13 After several days had passed, King Agrippa and Bernice arrived at Caesarea to pay their respects to Festus. 14 While they were staying there many days, Festus explained Paul's case to the king to get his opinion, saying, "There is a man left here as a prisoner by Felix. 15 When I was in Jerusalem, the chief priests and the elders of the Jews informed me about him, asking for a sentence of condemnation against him. 16 I answered them that it was not the custom of the Romans to hand over anyone before the accused had met his accusers face to face and had been given an opportunity to make a defense against the accusation. 17 So after they came back here with me, I did not postpone the case, but the next day I sat on the judgment seat and ordered the man to be brought. 18 When his accusers stood up, they did not charge him with any of the evil deeds I had suspected. 19 Rather they had several points of disagreement with him about their own religion and about a man named Jesus who was dead, whom Paul claimed to be alive. 20 Because I was at a loss how I could investigate these matters, I asked if he were willing to go to Jerusalem and be tried there on these charges. 21 But when Paul appealed to be kept in custody for the decision of His Majesty the Emperor, I ordered him to be kept under guard until I could send him to Caesar." 22 Agrippa said to Festus, "I would also like to hear the man myself." "Tomorrow, " he replied, "you will hear him."
   Paul Before King Agrippa and Bernice
   23 So the next day Agrippa and Bernice came with great pomp and entered the audience hall, along with the senior military officers and the prominent men of the city. When Festus gave the order, Paul was brought in. 24 Then Festus said, "King Agrippa, and all you who are present here with us, you see this man about whom the entire Jewish populace petitioned me both in Jerusalem and here, shouting loudly that he ought not to live any longer. 25 But I found that he had done nothing that deserved death, and when he appealed to His Majesty the Emperor, I decided to send him. 26 But I have nothing definite to write to my LORD about him. Therefore I have brought him before you all, and especially before you, King Agrippa, so that after this preliminary hearing I may have something to write. 27 For it seems unreasonable to me to send a prisoner without clearly indicating the charges against him."

King James Version


   1 Now when Festus was come into the province, after three days he ascended from Caesarea to Jerusalem.
   2 Then the high priest and the chief of the Jews informed him against Paul, and besought him,
   3 And desired favour against him, that he would send for him to Jerusalem, laying wait in the way to kill him.
   4 But Festus answered, that Paul should be kept at Caesarea, and that he himself would depart shortly thither.
   5 Let them therefore, said he, which among you are able, go down with me, and accuse this man, if there be any wickedness in him.
   6 And when he had tarried among them more than ten days, he went down unto Caesarea; and the next day sitting on the judgment seat commanded Paul to be brought.
   7 And when he was come, the Jews which came down from Jerusalem stood round about, and laid many and grievous complaints against Paul, which they could not prove.
   8 While he answered for himself, Neither against the law of the Jews, neither against the temple, nor yet against Caesar, have I offended any thing at all.
   9 But Festus, willing to do the Jews a pleasure, answered Paul, and said, Wilt thou go up to Jerusalem, and there be judged of these things before me?
   10 Then said Paul, I stand at Caesar's judgment seat, where I ought to be judged: to the Jews have I done no wrong, as thou very well knowest.
   11 For if I be an offender, or have committed any thing worthy of death, I refuse not to die: but if there be none of these things whereof these accuse me, no man may deliver me unto them. I appeal unto Caesar.
   12 Then Festus, when he had conferred with the council, answered, Hast thou appealed unto Caesar? unto Caesar shalt thou go.
   13 And after certain days king Agrippa and Bernice came unto Caesarea to salute Festus.
   14 And when they had been there many days, Festus declared Paul's cause unto the king, saying, There is a certain man left in bonds by Felix:
   15 About whom, when I was at Jerusalem, the chief priests and the elders of the Jews informed me, desiring to have judgment against him.
   16 To whom I answered, It is not the manner of the Romans to deliver any man to die, before that he which is accused have the accusers face to face, and have licence to answer for himself concerning the crime laid against him.
   17 Therefore, when they were come hither, without any delay on the morrow I sat on the judgment seat, and commanded the man to be brought forth.
   18 Against whom when the accusers stood up, they brought none accusation of such things as I supposed:
   19 But had certain questions against him of their own superstition, and of one Jesus, which was dead, whom Paul affirmed to be alive.
   20 And because I doubted of such manner of questions, I asked him whether he would go to Jerusalem, and there be judged of these matters.
   21 But when Paul had appealed to be reserved unto the hearing of Augustus, I commanded him to be kept till I might send him to Caesar.
   22 Then Agrippa said unto Festus, I would also hear the man myself. To morrow, said he, thou shalt hear him.
   23 And on the morrow, when Agrippa was come, and Bernice, with great pomp, and was entered into the place of hearing, with the chief captains, and principal men of the city, at Festus' commandment Paul was brought forth.
   24 And Festus said, King Agrippa, and all men which are here present with us, ye see this man, about whom all the multitude of the Jews have dealt with me, both at Jerusalem, and also here, crying that he ought not to live any longer.
   25 But when I found that he had committed nothing worthy of death, and that he himself hath appealed to Augustus, I have determined to send him.
   26 Of whom I have no certain thing to write unto my lord. Wherefore I have brought him forth before you, and specially before thee, O king Agrippa, that, after examination had, I might have somewhat to write.
   27 For it seemeth to me unreasonable to send a prisoner, and not withal to signify the crimes laid against him.
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