1Then Agrippa said unto Paul, You are permitted to speak for yourself. Then Paul stretched forth his hand, and answered for himself:
2I think myself happy, king Agrippa, because I shall answer for myself this day before you concerning all the things of which I am accused of the Jews:
3Especially because I know you to be expert in all customs and questions which are among the Jews: therefore I beseech you to hear me patiently.
4My manner of life from my youth, which was at the first among my own nation at Jerusalem, know all the Jews;
5Who knew me from the beginning, if they would testify, that after the most strict sect of our religion I lived a Pharisee.
6And now I stand and am judged for the hope of the promise made of God unto our fathers:
7Unto which promise our twelve tribes, instantly serving God day and night, hope to come. For which hope's sake, king Agrippa, I am accused of the Jews.
8Why should it be thought a thing incredible with you, that God should raise the dead?
9I verily thought with myself, that I ought to do many things contrary to the name of Jesus of Nazareth.
10Which thing I also did in Jerusalem: and many of the saints did I shut up in prison, having received authority from the chief priests; and when they were put to death, I gave my voice against them.
11And I punished them often in every synagogue, and compelled them to blaspheme; and being exceedingly mad against them, I persecuted them even unto foreign cities.
12Thus as I went to Damascus with authority and commission from the chief priests,
13At midday, O king, I saw in the way a light from heaven, above the brightness of the sun, shining round about me and them who journeyed with me.
14And when we were all fallen to the earth, I heard a voice speaking unto me, and saying in the Hebrew tongue,
Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me? it is hard for you to kick against the goads.
15And I said, Who are you, Lord? And he said,
I am Jesus whom you persecute.
16But rise, and stand upon your feet: for I have appeared unto you for this purpose, to make you a minister and a witness both of these things which you have seen, and of those things in which I will appear unto you;
17Delivering you from the people, and from the Gentiles, unto whom now I send you,
18To open their eyes, and to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan unto God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins, and inheritance among them who are sanctified by faith that is in me.
19Therefore, O king Agrippa, I was not disobedient unto the heavenly vision:
20But showed first unto them of Damascus, and at Jerusalem, and throughout all the country of Judea, and then to the Gentiles, that they should repent and turn to God, and do works befitting repentance.
21For these causes the Jews caught me in the temple, and went about to kill me.
22Having therefore obtained help of God, I continue unto this day, witnessing both to small and great, saying no other things than those which the prophets and Moses did say should come:
23That Christ should suffer, and that he should be the first that should rise from the dead, and should proclaim light unto the people, and to the Gentiles.
24And as he thus spoke for himself, Festus said with a loud voice, Paul, you are beside yourself; much learning does make you mad.
25But he said, I am not mad, most noble Festus; but speak forth the words of truth and good sense.
26For the king knows of these things, before whom also I speak freely: for I am persuaded that none of these things are hidden from him; for this thing was not done in a corner.
27King Agrippa, do you believe the prophets? I know that you believe.
28Then Agrippa said unto Paul, Almost you persuade me to be a Christian.
29And Paul said, I would to God, that not only you, but also all that hear me this day, were both almost, and altogether such as I am, except these bonds.
30And when he had thus spoken, the king rose up, and the governor, and Bernice, and they that sat with them:
31And when they were gone aside, they talked between themselves, saying, This man does nothing worthy of death or of bonds.
32Then said Agrippa unto Festus, This man might have been set at liberty, if he had not appealed unto Caesar.
Commentaries for Acts 26:0