1Then Agrippa said unto Paul, Thou art permitted to speak for thyself. Then Paul stretched forth the hand, and answered for himself:2I think myself happy, king Agrippa, because I shall answer for myself this day before thee touching all the things whereof I am accused of the Jews:3Especially because I know thee to be expert in all customs and questions which are among the Jews: wherefore I beseech thee to hear me patiently.4My manner of life from my youth, which was at the first among mine own nation at Jerusalem, know all the Jews;5Which knew me from the beginning, if they would testify, that after the most straitest 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 oft in every synagogue, and compelled them to blaspheme; and being exceedingly mad against them, I persecuted them even unto strange cities.12Whereupon 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 which 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 persecutest thou me? it is hard for thee to kick against the pricks.15And I said, Who art thou, Lord? And he said, I am Jesus whom thou persecutest.16But rise, and stand upon thy feet: for I have appeared unto thee for this purpose, to make thee a minister and a witness both of these things which thou hast seen, and of those things in the which I will appear unto thee;17Delivering thee from the people, and from the Gentiles, unto whom now I send thee,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 which are sanctified by faith that is in me.19Whereupon, O king Agrippa, I was not disobedient unto the heavenly vision:20But shewed first unto them of Damascus, and at Jerusalem, and throughout all the coasts of Judaea, and then to the Gentiles, that they should repent and turn to God, and do works meet for 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 none 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 shew light unto the people, and to the Gentiles.24And as he thus spake for himself, Festus said with a loud voice, Paul, thou art beside thyself; much learning doth make thee mad.25But he said, I am not mad, most noble Festus; but speak forth the words of truth and soberness.26For the king knoweth 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, believest thou the prophets? I know that thou believest.28Then Agrippa said unto Paul, Almost thou persuadest me to be a Christian.29And Paul said, I would to God, that not only thou, 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 doeth 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.
English Standard Version
Paul’s Defense Before Agrippa
1So Agrippa said to Paul, “You have permission to speak for yourself.” Then Paul stretched out his hand and made his defense: (Ac 9:15)2“I consider myself fortunate that it is before you, King Agrippa, I am going to make my defense today against all the accusations of the Jews, (Ac 25:7; Ac 25:19; Ac 26:7)3especially because you are familiar with all the customs and controversies of the Jews. Therefore I beg you to listen to me patiently. (Ac 6:14; Ac 18:15)4“My manner of life from my youth, spent from the beginning among my own nation and in Jerusalem, is known by all the Jews. (Ac 24:17; Ac 28:19; Ga 1:13)5They have known for a long time, if they are willing to testify, that according to the strictest party of our religion I have lived as a Pharisee. (Ac 22:3; Ac 23:6; Ac 24:5; Jas 1:26)6And now I stand here on trial because of my hope in the promise made by God to our fathers, (Ac 13:32)7to which our twelve tribes hope to attain, as they earnestly worship night and day. And for this hope I am accused by Jews, O king! (Ezr 6:17; Mt 19:28; Lu 22:30; Ac 2:33; Ac 26:2; Php 3:11; Heb 10:36; Heb 11:13; Heb 11:39; Jas 1:1; Re 21:12)8Why is it thought incredible by any of you that God raises the dead? (Ac 17:3; 1Co 15:12)9“I myself was convinced that I ought to do many things in opposing the name of Jesus of Nazareth. (Joh 16:2; Ac 3:17; Ac 22:8; 1Ti 1:13)10And I did so in Jerusalem. I not only locked up many of the saints in prison after receiving authority from the chief priests, but when they were put to death I cast my vote against them. (Ac 8:3; Ac 9:1; Ac 9:14; Ac 9:21; Ac 22:4; Ac 22:20; Ac 26:12)11And I punished them often in all the synagogues and tried to make them blaspheme, and in raging fury against them I persecuted them even to foreign cities. (Ac 9:1; Ac 13:45; Ac 22:5; Ac 22:19)
Paul Tells of His Conversion
12“In this connection I journeyed to Damascus with the authority and commission of the chief priests. (Ac 9:3; Ac 22:6)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 in the Hebrew language, ‘Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me? It is hard for you to kick against the goads.’ (Ac 21:40; Ac 22:2)15And I said, ‘Who are you, Lord?’ And the Lord said, ‘I am Jesus whom you are persecuting.16But rise and stand upon your feet, for I have appeared to you for this purpose, to 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, (Eze 2:1; Da 10:11; Ac 22:14)17delivering you from your people and from the Gentiles—to whom I am sending you (1Ch 16:35; Jer 1:8; Jer 1:19; Jer 15:20; Ac 9:15; Ac 12:11; Ro 11:13; 1Ti 2:7)18to open their eyes, so that they may turn from darkness to light and from the power of Satan to God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins and a place among those who are sanctified by faith in me.’ (Isa 35:5; Isa 42:7; Lu 22:53; Ac 5:31; Ac 15:9; Ac 20:32; 1Co 5:5; 2Th 2:13)19“Therefore, O King Agrippa, I was not disobedient to the heavenly vision, (Ac 26:13)20but declared first to those in Damascus, then in Jerusalem and throughout all the region of Judea, and also to the Gentiles, that they should repent and turn to God, performing deeds in keeping with their repentance. (Mt 3:8; Lu 3:8; Ac 2:38; Ac 9:19; Ac 9:26; Ac 13:46; Ac 14:15; Ac 22:17)21For this reason the Jews seized me in the temple and tried to kill me. (Ac 21:27; Ac 21:30; Ac 24:18)22To this day I have had the help that comes from God, and so I stand here testifying both to small and great, saying nothing but what the prophets and Moses said would come to pass: (Ac 10:43; Ac 24:14; 2Co 1:10; Eph 6:13; Heb 13:5)23that the Christ must suffer and that, by being the first to rise from the dead, he would proclaim light both to our people and to the Gentiles.” (Lu 2:32; Lu 24:26; Joh 12:34; Ac 3:18; Ac 26:18; Ro 1:4; 1Co 15:20; 1Co 15:23; Eph 2:17; Col 1:18; Heb 2:10; Re 1:5)24And as he was saying these things in his defense, Festus said with a loud voice, “Paul, you are out of your mind; your great learning is driving you out of your mind.” (2Ki 9:11; Jer 29:26; Mr 3:21; Joh 10:20; Ac 12:15; Ac 17:32; Ac 26:8; 1Co 1:23; 1Co 2:14; 1Co 4:10)25But Paul said, “I am not out of my mind, most excellent Festus, but I am speaking true and rational words. (Ac 24:2; 2Co 5:13; 2Pe 1:16)26For 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. (Ac 26:3)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 a Christian?” (Ac 11:26; 1Pe 4:16)29And Paul said, “Whether short or long, I would to God that not only you but also all who hear me this day might become such as I am—except for these chains.” (Ac 21:33; 1Co 7:7)30Then the king rose, and the governor and Bernice and those who were sitting with them. (Ac 23:24)31And when they had withdrawn, they said to one another, “This man is doing nothing to deserve death or imprisonment.” (Ac 23:29)32And Agrippa said to Festus, “This man could have been set free if he had not appealed to Caesar.” (Ac 9:15; Ac 25:11; Ac 28:18; Ac 28:19)