Acts 25

Paul Appeals to Caesar

25:1 Now1 three days after Festus2 arrived in the province, he went up to Jerusalem3 from Caesarea.4 25:2 So the chief priests and the most prominent men5 of the Jews brought formal charges6 against Paul to him. 25:3 Requesting him to do them a favor against Paul,7 they urged Festus8 to summon him to Jerusalem, planning an ambush9 to kill him along the way. 25:4 Then Festus10 replied that Paul was being kept at Caesarea,11 and he himself intended to go there12 shortly. 25:5 “So,” he said, “let your leaders13 go down there14 with me, and if this man has done anything wrong,15 they may bring charges16 against him.”

25:6 After Festus17 had stayed18 not more than eight or ten days among them, he went down to Caesarea,19 and the next day he sat20 on the judgment seat21 and ordered Paul to be brought. 25:7 When he arrived, the Jews who had come down from Jerusalem stood around him,22 bringing many serious23 charges that they were not able to prove.24 25:8 Paul said in his defense,25 “I have committed no offense26 against the Jewish law27 or against the temple or against Caesar.”28 25:9 But Festus,29 wanting to do the Jews a favor, asked Paul, “Are you willing to go up to Jerusalem and be tried30 before me there on these charges?”31 25:10 Paul replied,32 “I am standing before Caesar’s33 judgment seat,34 where I should be tried.35 I have done nothing wrong36 to the Jews, as you also know very well.37 25:11 If then I am in the wrong38 and have done anything that deserves death, I am not trying to escape dying,39 but if not one of their charges against me is true,40 no one can hand me over to them.41 I appeal to Caesar!”42 25:12 Then, after conferring with his council,43 Festus44 replied, “You have appealed to Caesar;45 to Caesar46 you will go!”47

Festus Asks King Agrippa for Advice

25:13 After several days had passed, King Agrippa48 and Bernice arrived at Caesarea49 to pay their respects50 to Festus.51 25:14 While52 they were staying there many days, Festus53 explained Paul’s case to the king to get his opinion,54 saying, “There is a man left here as a prisoner by Felix. 25:15 When I was in Jerusalem,55 the chief priests and the elders of the Jews informed56 me about him,57 asking for a sentence of condemnation58 against him. 25:16 I answered them59 that it was not the custom of the Romans to hand over anyone60 before the accused had met his accusers face to face61 and had been given62 an opportunity to make a defense against the accusation.63 25:17 So after they came back here with me,64 I did not postpone the case,65 but the next day I sat66 on the judgment seat67 and ordered the man to be brought. 25:18 When his accusers stood up, they did not charge68 him with any of the evil deeds I had suspected.69 25:19 Rather they had several points of disagreement70 with him about their own religion71 and about a man named Jesus72 who was dead, whom Paul claimed73 to be alive. 25:20 Because I was at a loss74 how I could investigate these matters,75 I asked if he were willing to go to Jerusalem and be tried76 there on these charges.77 25:21 But when Paul appealed to be kept in custody for the decision of His Majesty the Emperor,78 I ordered him to be kept under guard until I could send him to Caesar.”79 25:22 Agrippa80 said to Festus,81 “I would also like to hear the man myself.” “Tomorrow,” he replied,82 “you will hear him.”

Paul Before King Agrippa and Bernice

25:23 So the next day Agrippa83 and Bernice came with great pomp84 and entered the audience hall,85 along with the senior military officers86 and the prominent men of the city. When Festus87 gave the order,88 Paul was brought in. 25:24 Then Festus89 said, “King Agrippa,90 and all you who are present here with us, you see this man about whom the entire Jewish populace91 petitioned92 me both in Jerusalem93 and here,94 shouting loudly95 that he ought not to live any longer. 25:25 But I found that he had done nothing that deserved death,96 and when he appealed97 to His Majesty the Emperor,98 I decided to send him.99 25:26 But I have nothing definite100 to write to my lord101 about him.102 Therefore I have brought him before you all, and especially before you, King Agrippa,103 so that after this preliminary hearing104 I may have something to write. 25:27 For it seems unreasonable to me to send a prisoner without clearly indicating105 the charges against him.”

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