When we had torn ourselves away from them, we set sail on a straight course to Cos, and the next day to Rhodes and from there to Patara.
finding a ship crossing over to Phoenicia, we went aboard and set sail.When
we had come within sight of Cyprus, leaving it on our port side, we sailed to Syria
and landed at Tyre, because the ship was to unload her cargo there.
the disciples, we stayed there for a week. They kept urging Paul through the spirit not to set foot in Jerusalem.When our days there were
over, we departed and continued on our journey. All the believers, with wives
and children, accompanied us until we were out of the city. Kneeling down
on the beach, we prayed. After saying goodbye to each other,
we boarded the
ship and they returned home.
Continuing the voyage from Tyre, we arrived at Ptolemais.
We greeted the brothers and sisters and spent a day with them.The next day
we departed and went to Caesarea. We stayed at the house of Philip the
evangelist, who was one of the seven.Philip had four virgin daughters who
10 While we stayed there for many days, a prophet
named Agabus came from Judea. 11 Coming to us and taking Paul’s belt, he
bound his own hands and feet and said, “This is what the holy spirit says: In
this way the Jews in Jerusalem will bind the man who owns this belt, and will
deliver him over to the Gentiles.”
12 When we heard this, we and the believers
there begged Paul not to go up to Jerusalem. 13 Then Paul answered, “What
are you doing, weeping and breaking my heart? For I am ready not only to be
bound, but also to die in Jerusalem for the name of the lord Jesus.”
14 Since we
could not persuade him, we said no more except, “The Lord’s will be done.” 15 After these days we made preparations and started on our way to Jerusalem.
16 Some of the disciples from Caesarea also went with us, bringing us to the house of Mnason from Cyprus, a disciple from the early days, with whom we were going to stay.
17 When we had come to Jerusalem, the brothers and sisters there
gave us a warm welcome. 18 The following day Paul went with us to see James, and
all the elders were present.
19 After he had greeted them, Paul recounted in detail everything that God had done among the Gentiles through his ministry. 20 When they heard it they glorified God. Then they said to Paul, “You see, brother,
how many thousands of Jews have become believers, and they are all zealous
for the Law. 21 They have been informed about you, that you teach all the
Jews living among the Gentiles to forsake Moses, telling them not to
circumcise their children and not to follow the customs. 22 What should be done
then? Doubtless, they will hear that you have come.
23 So then do what we tell
you: We have four men who have taken a vow. 24 Take them and purify
yourself with them, and pay their expenses to have their heads shaved. Then all will know that there is no truth in what they have heard about you, but that
you yourself live in conformity with the Law. 25 But about the Gentiles who
have believed, we have written our decision that they should avoid meat
sacrificed to idols, blood, the meat of strangled animals, and sexual
26 So Paul took the men, and the next day purified himself with them and
went into the Temple
and gave notice of the completion of the
days of purification, when the sacrifice would be offered for each of them. 27 When the seven days were almost completed, the Jews from the province of Asia, seeing
Paul in the Temple, stirred up the whole crowd and laid hands on him, 28 shouting, “People of Israel, help! This is the man who is teaching everyone
everywhere against our people, the Law, and this place. And he has even
brought Greeks into the inner Temple courts and has defiled this holy place!” 29 For they
had seen Trophimus the Ephesian with Paul in the city and assumed that Paul
had brought him into the inner Temple courts. 30 Then the whole city was stirred up and
the people came running together. They seized Paul and dragged him out of
the Temple. Immediately the doors were shut. 31 As they were trying to kill
him, a report was sent to the commander of the Roman cohort that all
Jerusalem was in an uproar. 32 Instantly the commander took soldiers and
centurions and ran down to the people. When the crowd saw the commander
and the soldiers, they stopped beating Paul. 33 Then the commander came up,
arrested Paul, ordered him to be bound with two chains, and asked who he
was and what he had done. 34 But some of the crowd were shouting one thing
and some another. When the commander was unable to get the facts because
of all the noise, he ordered Paul to be brought into the barracks. 35 When Paul
came to the stairs, he actually had to be carried by the soldiers because of the violence of
the mob, 36 as a crowd was following them, shouting, “Away with him!” 37 As Paul was about to be brought into the barracks, he asked the
commander, “May I speak to you?” The commander said, “Do you speak Greek? 38 Then you are not the Egyptian who stirred up a rebellion and led
four thousand of the ‘Assassins’ into the desert some time ago?” 39 Paul replied, “I
am a Jew, from Tarsus in Cilicia, a citizen of a significant city. I request permission to speak to the people.” 40 When the commander had given him
permission, Paul stood on the stairs and gestured with his hand to the people.
A great silence fell over them, and he addressed them in Aramaic:
Not necessarily prophetesses in the predictive sense, but ladies who were thoroughly involved
in the ministry of edifying and encouraging (1 Cor. 11:4-5; 14:3ff).
This episode suggests that Paul’s understanding was more radical than James’, but Paul was willing to be diplomatic on this occasion. In Galatians and Colossians the imposition of the Law of Moses in the letter on any believer was opposed by Paul, and in Rom. 14:14, 20 Paul spoke as a Jew and a Christian in a way that could not possibly mean that he was teaching the food laws of Lev. 11. Paul in Galatians speaks of circumcision in the flesh as unnecessary for Jew or Gentile (Gal. 5:2, 3, 11). He said vehemently that if anyone insisted on obeying the law of circumcision in the flesh, one would have to keep the whole Law.