Acts 23:1-15 English Standard Version

23 And looking intently at the council, Paul said, "Brothers, I have lived my life before God in all good conscience up to this day." 2  And the high priest Ananias commanded those who stood by him to strike him on the mouth. 3  Then Paul said to him, "God is going to strike you, you whitewashed wall! Are you sitting to judge me according to the law, and yet contrary to the law you order me to be struck?" 4  Those who stood by said, "Would you revile God's high priest? 5  And Paul said, "I did not know, brothers, that he was the high priest, for it is written, 'You shall not speak evil of a ruler of your people.'"

6  Now when Paul perceived that one part were Sadducees and the other Pharisees, he cried out in the council, "Brothers, I am a Pharisee, a son of Pharisees. It is with respect to the hope and the resurrection of the dead that I am on trial." 7  And when he had said this, a dissension arose between the Pharisees and the Sadducees, and the assembly was divided. 8  For the Sadducees say that there is no resurrection, nor angel, nor spirit, but the Pharisees acknowledge them all. 9  Then a great clamor arose, and some of the scribes of the Pharisees' party stood up and contended sharply, "We find nothing wrong in this man. What if a spirit or an angel spoke to him?" 10  And when the dissension became violent, the tribune, afraid that Paul would be torn to pieces by them, commanded the soldiers to go down and take him away from among them by force and bring him into the barracks. 11  The following night the Lord stood by him and said, "Take courage, for as you have testified to the facts about me in Jerusalem, so you must testify also in Rome."

The Plot against Paul's Life

12  When it was day, the Jews made a plot and bound themselves by an oath neither to eat nor drink till they had killed Paul. 13  There were more than forty who made this conspiracy. 14  They went to the chief priests and elders and said, "We have strictly bound ourselves by an oath to taste no food till we have killed Paul 15  Now therefore you, along with the council, give notice to the tribune to bring him down to you, as though you were going to determine his case more exactly. And we are ready to kill him before he comes near."

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