Peter Defends His Actions to the Jerusalem Church
11:1 Now the apostles and the brothers who were throughout Judea heard that the Gentiles too had accepted1 the word of God.2 11:2 So when Peter went up to Jerusalem,3 the circumcised believers4 took issue with5 him, 11:3 saying, “You went to6 uncircumcised men and shared a meal with7 them.” 11:4 But Peter began and explained it to them point by point,8 saying, 11:5 “I was in the city of Joppa praying, and in a trance I saw a vision,9 an object something like a large sheet descending,10 being let down from heaven11 by its four corners, and it came to me. 11:6 As I stared12 I looked into it and saw four-footed animals of the earth, wild animals, reptiles,13 and wild birds.14 11:7 I also heard a voice saying to me, ‘Get up, Peter; slaughter15 and eat!’ 11:8 But I said, ‘Certainly not, Lord, for nothing defiled or ritually unclean16 has ever entered my mouth!’ 11:9 But the voice replied a second time from heaven, ‘What God has made clean, you must not consider17 ritually unclean!’ 11:10 This happened three times, and then everything was pulled up to heaven again. 11:11 At that very moment,18 three men sent to me from Caesarea19 approached20 the house where we were staying.21 11:12 The Spirit told me to accompany them without hesitation. These six brothers22 also went with me, and we entered the man’s house. 11:13 He informed us how he had seen an angel standing in his house and saying, ‘Send to Joppa and summon Simon, who is called Peter, 11:14 who will speak a message23 to you by which you and your entire household will be saved.’ 11:15 Then as I began to speak, the Holy Spirit fell on24 them just as he did25 on us at the beginning.26 11:16 And I remembered the word of the Lord,27 as he used to say,28 ‘John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.’29 11:17 Therefore if God30 gave them the same gift31 as he also gave us after believing32 in the Lord Jesus Christ,33 who was I to hinder34 God?” 11:18 When they heard this,35 they ceased their objections36 and praised37 God, saying, “So then, God has granted the repentance38 that leads to life even to the Gentiles.”39
Activity in the Church at Antioch
11:19 Now those who had been scattered because of the persecution that took place over Stephen40 went as far as41 Phoenicia,42 Cyprus,43 and Antioch,44 speaking the message45 to no one but Jews. 11:20 But there were some men from Cyprus46 and Cyrene47 among them who came48 to Antioch49 and began to speak to the Greeks50 too, proclaiming the good news of the Lord Jesus. 11:21 The51 hand of the Lord was with them, and a great number who believed52 turned53 to the Lord. 11:22 A report54 about them came to the attention55 of the church in Jerusalem,56 and they sent Barnabas57 to Antioch.58 11:23 When59 he came and saw the grace of God, he rejoiced and encouraged them all to remain true60 to the Lord with devoted hearts,61 11:24 because he was a good man, full of the Holy Spirit and of faith, and a significant number of people62 were brought to the Lord. 11:25 Then Barnabas departed for Tarsus to look for Saul, 11:26 and when he found him, he brought him to Antioch.63 So64 for a whole year Barnabas and Saul65 met with the church and taught a significant number of people.66 Now it was in Antioch67 that the disciples were first called Christians.68
Famine Relief for Judea
11:27 At that time69 some70 prophets71 came down72 from Jerusalem73 to Antioch.74 11:28 One of them, named Agabus, got up75 and predicted76 by the Spirit that a severe77 famine78 was about to come over the whole inhabited world.79 (This80 took place during the reign of Claudius.)81 11:29 So the disciples, each in accordance with his financial ability,82 decided83 to send relief84 to the brothers living in Judea. 11:30 They did so,85 sending their financial aid86 to the elders by Barnabas and Saul.