1In the first book, Theophilus, I wrote about all that Jesus did and taught from the beginning 2until the day when he was taken up to heaven, after giving instructions through the Holy Spirit to the apostles whom he had chosen. 3After his suffering he presented himself alive to them by many convincing proofs, appearing to them over the course of forty days and speaking about the kingdom of God. 4While staying* with them, he ordered them not to leave Jerusalem, but to wait there for the promise of the Father. This, he said, is what you have heard from me; 5for John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with* the Holy Spirit not many days from now.
6 So when they had come together, they asked him, Lord, is this the time when you will restore the kingdom to Israel? 7He replied, It is not for you to know the times or periods that the Father has set by his own authority. 8But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth. 9When he had said this, as they were watching, he was lifted up, and a cloud took him out of their sight. 10While he was going and they were gazing up towards heaven, suddenly two men in white robes stood by them. 11They said, Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking up towards heaven? This Jesus, who has been taken up from you into heaven, will come in the same way as you saw him go into heaven.
12 Then they returned to Jerusalem from the mount called Olivet, which is near Jerusalem, a sabbath days journey away. 13When they had entered the city, they went to the room upstairs where they were staying, Peter, and John, and James, and Andrew, Philip and Thomas, Bartholomew and Matthew, James son of Alphaeus, and Simon the Zealot, and Judas son of* James. 14All these were constantly devoting themselves to prayer, together with certain women, including Mary the mother of Jesus, as well as his brothers.
15 In those days Peter stood up among the believers* (together the crowd numbered about one hundred and twenty people) and said,
16Friends,* the scripture had to be fulfilled, which the Holy Spirit through David foretold concerning Judas, who became a guide for those who arrested Jesus
17for he was numbered among us and was allotted his share in this ministry.
18(Now this man acquired a field with the reward of his wickedness; and falling headlong,* he burst open in the middle and all his bowels gushed out.
19This became known to all the residents of Jerusalem, so that the field was called in their language Hakeldama, that is, Field of Blood.)
20For it is written in the book of Psalms,
Let his homestead become desolate,
and let there be no one to live in it;
Let another take his position of overseer.
21So one of the men who have accompanied us throughout the time that the Lord Jesus went in and out among us, 22beginning from the baptism of John until the day when he was taken up from usone of these must become a witness with us to his resurrection. 23So they proposed two, Joseph called Barsabbas, who was also known as Justus, and Matthias. 24Then they prayed and said, Lord, you know everyones heart. Show us which one of these two you have chosen 25to take the place* in this ministry and apostleship from which Judas turned aside to go to his own place. 26And they cast lots for them, and the lot fell on Matthias; and he was added to the eleven apostles.
2When the day of Pentecost had come, they were all together in one place. 2And suddenly from heaven there came a sound like the rush of a violent wind, and it filled the entire house where they were sitting. 3Divided tongues, as of fire, appeared among them, and a tongue rested on each of them. 4All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other languages, as the Spirit gave them ability.
5 Now there were devout Jews from every nation under heaven living in Jerusalem. 6And at this sound the crowd gathered and was bewildered, because each one heard them speaking in the native language of each. 7Amazed and astonished, they asked, Are not all these who are speaking Galileans? 8And how is it that we hear, each of us, in our own native language? 9Parthians, Medes, Elamites, and residents of Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, 10Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya belonging to Cyrene, and visitors from Rome, both Jews and proselytes, 11Cretans and Arabsin our own languages we hear them speaking about Gods deeds of power. 12All were amazed and perplexed, saying to one another, What does this mean? 13But others sneered and said, They are filled with new wine.
14 But Peter, standing with the eleven, raised his voice and addressed them: Men of Judea and all who live in Jerusalem, let this be known to you, and listen to what I say.
15Indeed, these are not drunk, as you suppose, for it is only nine oclock in the morning.
16No, this is what was spoken through the prophet Joel:
17 In the last days it will be, God declares,
that I will pour out my Spirit upon all flesh,
and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy,
and your young men shall see visions,
and your old men shall dream dreams.
18 Even upon my slaves, both men and women,
in those days I will pour out my Spirit;
and they shall prophesy.
19 And I will show portents in the heaven above
and signs on the earth below,
blood, and fire, and smoky mist.
20 The sun shall be turned to darkness
and the moon to blood,
before the coming of the Lords great and glorious day.
21 Then everyone who calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.
22 You that are Israelites,* listen to what I have to say: Jesus of Nazareth,* a man attested to you by God with deeds of power, wonders, and signs that God did through him among you, as you yourselves know
23this man, handed over to you according to the definite plan and foreknowledge of God, you crucified and killed by the hands of those outside the law.
24But God raised him up, having freed him from death,* because it was impossible for him to be held in its power.
25For David says concerning him,
I saw the Lord always before me,
for he is at my right hand so that I will not be shaken;
26 therefore my heart was glad, and my tongue rejoiced;
moreover, my flesh will live in hope.
27 For you will not abandon my soul to Hades,
or let your Holy One experience corruption.
28 You have made known to me the ways of life;
you will make me full of gladness with your presence.
29 Fellow Israelites,* I may say to you confidently of our ancestor David that he both died and was buried, and his tomb is with us to this day.
30Since he was a prophet, he knew that God had sworn with an oath to him that he would put one of his descendants on his throne.
31Foreseeing this, David* spoke of the resurrection of the Messiah,* saying,
He was not abandoned to Hades,
nor did his flesh experience corruption.
32This Jesus God raised up, and of that all of us are witnesses. 33Being therefore exalted at* the right hand of God, and having received from the Father the promise of the Holy Spirit, he has poured out this that you both see and hear. 34For David did not ascend into the heavens, but he himself says,
The Lord said to my Lord,
Sit at my right hand,
35 until I make your enemies your footstool.
36Therefore let the entire house of Israel know with certainty that God has made him both Lord and Messiah,* this Jesus whom you crucified.
37 Now when they heard this, they were cut to the heart and said to Peter and to the other apostles, Brothers,* what should we do? 38Peter said to them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ so that your sins may be forgiven; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. 39For the promise is for you, for your children, and for all who are far away, everyone whom the Lord our God calls to him. 40And he testified with many other arguments and exhorted them, saying, Save yourselves from this corrupt generation. 41So those who welcomed his message were baptized, and that day about three thousand persons were added. 42They devoted themselves to the apostles teaching and fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers.
43 Awe came upon everyone, because many wonders and signs were being done by the apostles. 44All who believed were together and had all things in common; 45they would sell their possessions and goods and distribute the proceeds* to all, as any had need. 46Day by day, as they spent much time together in the temple, they broke bread at home* and ate their food with glad and generous* hearts, 47praising God and having the goodwill of all the people. And day by day the Lord added to their number those who were being saved.
3One day Peter and John were going up to the temple at the hour of prayer, at three oclock in the afternoon. 2And a man lame from birth was being carried in. People would lay him daily at the gate of the temple called the Beautiful Gate so that he could ask for alms from those entering the temple. 3When he saw Peter and John about to go into the temple, he asked them for alms. 4Peter looked intently at him, as did John, and said, Look at us. 5And he fixed his attention on them, expecting to receive something from them. 6But Peter said, I have no silver or gold, but what I have I give you; in the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth,* stand up and walk. 7And he took him by the right hand and raised him up; and immediately his feet and ankles were made strong. 8Jumping up, he stood and began to walk, and he entered the temple with them, walking and leaping and praising God. 9All the people saw him walking and praising God, 10and they recognized him as the one who used to sit and ask for alms at the Beautiful Gate of the temple; and they were filled with wonder and amazement at what had happened to him.
11 While he clung to Peter and John, all the people ran together to them in the portico called Solomons Portico, utterly astonished. 12When Peter saw it, he addressed the people, You Israelites,* why do you wonder at this, or why do you stare at us, as though by our own power or piety we had made him walk? 13The God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, the God of our ancestors has glorified his servant* Jesus, whom you handed over and rejected in the presence of Pilate, though he had decided to release him. 14But you rejected the Holy and Righteous One and asked to have a murderer given to you, 15and you killed the Author of life, whom God raised from the dead. To this we are witnesses. 16And by faith in his name, his name itself has made this man strong, whom you see and know; and the faith that is through Jesus* has given him this perfect health in the presence of all of you.
17 And now, friends,* I know that you acted in ignorance, as did also your rulers. 18In this way God fulfilled what he had foretold through all the prophets, that his Messiah* would suffer. 19Repent therefore, and turn to God so that your sins may be wiped out, 20so that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord, and that he may send the Messiah* appointed for you, that is, Jesus, 21who must remain in heaven until the time of universal restoration that God announced long ago through his holy prophets. 22Moses said, The Lord your God will raise up for you from your own people* a prophet like me. You must listen to whatever he tells you. 23And it will be that everyone who does not listen to that prophet will be utterly rooted out from the people. 24And all the prophets, as many as have spoken, from Samuel and those after him, also predicted these days. 25You are the descendants of the prophets and of the covenant that God gave to your ancestors, saying to Abraham, And in your descendants all the families of the earth shall be blessed. 26When God raised up his servant,* he sent him first to you, to bless you by turning each of you from your wicked ways.
4While Peter and John* were speaking to the people, the priests, the captain of the temple, and the Sadducees came to them, 2much annoyed because they were teaching the people and proclaiming that in Jesus there is the resurrection of the dead. 3So they arrested them and put them in custody until the next day, for it was already evening. 4But many of those who heard the word believed; and they numbered about five thousand.
5 The next day their rulers, elders, and scribes assembled in Jerusalem,
6with Annas the high priest, Caiaphas, John,* and Alexander, and all who were of the high-priestly family.
7When they had made the prisoners* stand in their midst, they inquired, By what power or by what name did you do this?
8Then Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, said to them, Rulers of the people and elders,
9if we are questioned today because of a good deed done to someone who was sick and are asked how this man has been healed,
10let it be known to all of you, and to all the people of Israel, that this man is standing before you in good health by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth,* whom you crucified, whom God raised from the dead.
11This Jesus* is
the stone that was rejected by you, the builders;
it has become the cornerstone.*
12There is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among mortals by which we must be saved.
13 Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John and realized that they were uneducated and ordinary men, they were amazed and recognized them as companions of Jesus. 14When they saw the man who had been cured standing beside them, they had nothing to say in opposition. 15So they ordered them to leave the council while they discussed the matter with one another. 16They said, What will we do with them? For it is obvious to all who live in Jerusalem that a notable sign has been done through them; we cannot deny it. 17But to keep it from spreading further among the people, let us warn them to speak no more to anyone in this name. 18So they called them and ordered them not to speak or teach at all in the name of Jesus. 19But Peter and John answered them, Whether it is right in Gods sight to listen to you rather than to God, you must judge; 20for we cannot keep from speaking about what we have seen and heard. 21After threatening them again, they let them go, finding no way to punish them because of the people, for all of them praised God for what had happened. 22For the man on whom this sign of healing had been performed was more than forty years old.
23 After they were released, they went to their friends* and reported what the chief priests and the elders had said to them.
24When they heard it, they raised their voices together to God and said, Sovereign Lord, who made the heaven and the earth, the sea, and everything in them,
25it is you who said by the Holy Spirit through our ancestor David, your servant:*
Why did the Gentiles rage,
and the peoples imagine vain things?
26 The kings of the earth took their stand,
and the rulers have gathered together
against the Lord and against his Messiah.*
27For in this city, in fact, both Herod and Pontius Pilate, with the Gentiles and the peoples of Israel, gathered together against your holy servant* Jesus, whom you anointed, 28to do whatever your hand and your plan had predestined to take place. 29And now, Lord, look at their threats, and grant to your servants* to speak your word with all boldness, 30while you stretch out your hand to heal, and signs and wonders are performed through the name of your holy servant* Jesus. 31When they had prayed, the place in which they were gathered together was shaken; and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke the word of God with boldness.
32 Now the whole group of those who believed were of one heart and soul, and no one claimed private ownership of any possessions, but everything they owned was held in common. 33With great power the apostles gave their testimony to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, and great grace was upon them all. 34There was not a needy person among them, for as many as owned lands or houses sold them and brought the proceeds of what was sold. 35They laid it at the apostles feet, and it was distributed to each as any had need. 36There was a Levite, a native of Cyprus, Joseph, to whom the apostles gave the name Barnabas (which means son of encouragement). 37He sold a field that belonged to him, then brought the money, and laid it at the apostles feet.
5But a man named Ananias, with the consent of his wife Sapphira, sold a piece of property; 2with his wifes knowledge, he kept back some of the proceeds, and brought only a part and laid it at the apostles feet. 3Ananias, Peter asked, why has Satan filled your heart to lie to the Holy Spirit and to keep back part of the proceeds of the land? 4While it remained unsold, did it not remain your own? And after it was sold, were not the proceeds at your disposal? How is it that you have contrived this deed in your heart? You did not lie to us* but to God! 5Now when Ananias heard these words, he fell down and died. And great fear seized all who heard of it. 6The young men came and wrapped up his body,* then carried him out and buried him.
7 After an interval of about three hours his wife came in, not knowing what had happened. 8Peter said to her, Tell me whether you and your husband sold the land for such and such a price. And she said, Yes, that was the price. 9Then Peter said to her, How is it that you have agreed together to put the Spirit of the Lord to the test? Look, the feet of those who have buried your husband are at the door, and they will carry you out. 10Immediately she fell down at his feet and died. When the young men came in they found her dead, so they carried her out and buried her beside her husband. 11And great fear seized the whole church and all who heard of these things.
12 Now many signs and wonders were done among the people through the apostles. And they were all together in Solomons Portico. 13None of the rest dared to join them, but the people held them in high esteem. 14Yet more than ever believers were added to the Lord, great numbers of both men and women, 15so that they even carried out the sick into the streets, and laid them on cots and mats, in order that Peters shadow might fall on some of them as he came by. 16A great number of people would also gather from the towns around Jerusalem, bringing the sick and those tormented by unclean spirits, and they were all cured.
17 Then the high priest took action; he and all who were with him (that is, the sect of the Sadducees), being filled with jealousy, 18arrested the apostles and put them in the public prison. 19But during the night an angel of the Lord opened the prison doors, brought them out, and said, 20Go, stand in the temple and tell the people the whole message about this life. 21When they heard this, they entered the temple at daybreak and went on with their teaching.
When the high priest and those with him arrived, they called together the council and the whole body of the elders of Israel, and sent to the prison to have them brought. 22But when the temple police went there, they did not find them in the prison; so they returned and reported, 23We found the prison securely locked and the guards standing at the doors, but when we opened them, we found no one inside. 24Now when the captain of the temple and the chief priests heard these words, they were perplexed about them, wondering what might be going on. 25Then someone arrived and announced, Look, the men whom you put in prison are standing in the temple and teaching the people! 26Then the captain went with the temple police and brought them, but without violence, for they were afraid of being stoned by the people.
27 When they had brought them, they had them stand before the council. The high priest questioned them, 28saying, We gave you strict orders not to teach in this name,* yet here you have filled Jerusalem with your teaching and you are determined to bring this mans blood on us. 29But Peter and the apostles answered, We must obey God rather than any human authority.* 30The God of our ancestors raised up Jesus, whom you had killed by hanging him on a tree. 31God exalted him at his right hand as Leader and Saviour, so that he might give repentance to Israel and forgiveness of sins. 32And we are witnesses to these things, and so is the Holy Spirit whom God has given to those who obey him.
33 When they heard this, they were enraged and wanted to kill them. 34But a Pharisee in the council named Gamaliel, a teacher of the law, respected by all the people, stood up and ordered the men to be put outside for a short time. 35Then he said to them, Fellow-Israelites,* consider carefully what you propose to do to these men. 36For some time ago Theudas rose up, claiming to be somebody, and a number of men, about four hundred, joined him; but he was killed, and all who followed him were dispersed and disappeared. 37After him Judas the Galilean rose up at the time of the census and got people to follow him; he also perished, and all who followed him were scattered. 38So in the present case, I tell you, keep away from these men and let them alone; because if this plan or this undertaking is of human origin, it will fail; 39but if it is of God, you will not be able to overthrow themin that case you may even be found fighting against God!
They were convinced by him,
40and when they had called in the apostles, they had them flogged. Then they ordered them not to speak in the name of Jesus, and let them go.
41As they left the council, they rejoiced that they were considered worthy to suffer dishonour for the sake of the name.
42And every day in the temple and at home* they did not cease to teach and proclaim Jesus as the Messiah.*
6Now during those days, when the disciples were increasing in number, the Hellenists complained against the Hebrews because their widows were being neglected in the daily distribution of food. 2And the twelve called together the whole community of the disciples and said, It is not right that we should neglect the word of God in order to wait at tables.* 3Therefore, friends,* select from among yourselves seven men of good standing, full of the Spirit and of wisdom, whom we may appoint to this task, 4while we, for our part, will devote ourselves to prayer and to serving the word. 5What they said pleased the whole community, and they chose Stephen, a man full of faith and the Holy Spirit, together with Philip, Prochorus, Nicanor, Timon, Parmenas, and Nicolaus, a proselyte of Antioch. 6They had these men stand before the apostles, who prayed and laid their hands on them.
7 The word of God continued to spread; the number of the disciples increased greatly in Jerusalem, and a great many of the priests became obedient to the faith.
8 Stephen, full of grace and power, did great wonders and signs among the people. 9Then some of those who belonged to the synagogue of the Freedmen (as it was called), Cyrenians, Alexandrians, and others of those from Cilicia and Asia, stood up and argued with Stephen. 10But they could not withstand the wisdom and the Spirit* with which he spoke. 11Then they secretly instigated some men to say, We have heard him speak blasphemous words against Moses and God. 12They stirred up the people as well as the elders and the scribes; then they suddenly confronted him, seized him, and brought him before the council. 13They set up false witnesses who said, This man never stops saying things against this holy place and the law; 14for we have heard him say that this Jesus of Nazareth* will destroy this place and will change the customs that Moses handed on to us. 15And all who sat in the council looked intently at him, and they saw that his face was like the face of an angel.
7Then the high priest asked him, Are these things so? 2And Stephen replied:
Brothers* and fathers, listen to me. The God of glory appeared to our ancestor Abraham when he was in Mesopotamia, before he lived in Haran, 3and said to him, Leave your country and your relatives and go to the land that I will show you. 4Then he left the country of the Chaldeans and settled in Haran. After his father died, God had him move from there to this country in which you are now living. 5He did not give him any of it as a heritage, not even a foots length, but promised to give it to him as his possession and to his descendants after him, even though he had no child. 6And God spoke in these terms, that his descendants would be resident aliens in a country belonging to others, who would enslave them and maltreat them for four hundred years. 7But I will judge the nation that they serve, said God, and after that they shall come out and worship me in this place. 8Then he gave him the covenant of circumcision. And so Abraham* became the father of Isaac and circumcised him on the eighth day; and Isaac became the father of Jacob, and Jacob of the twelve patriarchs.
9 The patriarchs, jealous of Joseph, sold him into Egypt; but God was with him, 10and rescued him from all his afflictions, and enabled him to win favour and to show wisdom when he stood before Pharaoh, king of Egypt, who appointed him ruler over Egypt and over all his household. 11Now there came a famine throughout Egypt and Canaan, and great suffering, and our ancestors could find no food. 12But when Jacob heard that there was grain in Egypt, he sent our ancestors there on their first visit. 13On the second visit Joseph made himself known to his brothers, and Josephs family became known to Pharaoh. 14Then Joseph sent and invited his father Jacob and all his relatives to come to him, seventy-five in all; 15so Jacob went down to Egypt. He himself died there as well as our ancestors, 16and their bodies* were brought back to Shechem and laid in the tomb that Abraham had bought for a sum of silver from the sons of Hamor in Shechem.
17 But as the time drew near for the fulfilment of the promise that God had made to Abraham, our people in Egypt increased and multiplied 18until another king who had not known Joseph ruled over Egypt. 19He dealt craftily with our race and forced our ancestors to abandon their infants so that they would die. 20At this time Moses was born, and he was beautiful before God. For three months he was brought up in his fathers house; 21and when he was abandoned, Pharaohs daughter adopted him and brought him up as her own son. 22So Moses was instructed in all the wisdom of the Egyptians and was powerful in his words and deeds.
23 When he was forty years old, it came into his heart to visit his relatives, the Israelites.* 24When he saw one of them being wronged, he defended the oppressed man and avenged him by striking down the Egyptian. 25He supposed that his kinsfolk would understand that God through him was rescuing them, but they did not understand. 26The next day he came to some of them as they were quarrelling and tried to reconcile them, saying, Men, you are brothers; why do you wrong each other? 27But the man who was wronging his neighbour pushed Moses* aside, saying, Who made you a ruler and a judge over us? 28Do you want to kill me as you killed the Egyptian yesterday? 29When he heard this, Moses fled and became a resident alien in the land of Midian. There he became the father of two sons.
30 Now when forty years had passed, an angel appeared to him in the wilderness of Mount Sinai, in the flame of a burning bush. 31When Moses saw it, he was amazed at the sight; and as he approached to look, there came the voice of the Lord: 32I am the God of your ancestors, the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. Moses began to tremble and did not dare to look. 33Then the Lord said to him, Take off the sandals from your feet, for the place where you are standing is holy ground. 34I have surely seen the mistreatment of my people who are in Egypt and have heard their groaning, and I have come down to rescue them. Come now, I will send you to Egypt.
35 It was this Moses whom they rejected when they said, Who made you a ruler and a judge? and whom God now sent as both ruler and liberator through the angel who appeared to him in the bush.
36He led them out, having performed wonders and signs in Egypt, at the Red Sea, and in the wilderness for forty years.
37This is the Moses who said to the Israelites, God will raise up a prophet for you from your own people* as he raised me up.
38He is the one who was in the congregation in the wilderness with the angel who spoke to him at Mount Sinai, and with our ancestors; and he received living oracles to give to us.
39Our ancestors were unwilling to obey him; instead, they pushed him aside, and in their hearts they turned back to Egypt,
40saying to Aaron, Make gods for us who will lead the way for us; as for this Moses who led us out from the land of Egypt, we do not know what has happened to him.
41At that time they made a calf, offered a sacrifice to the idol, and revelled in the works of their hands.
42But God turned away from them and handed them over to worship the host of heaven, as it is written in the book of the prophets:
Did you offer to me slain victims and sacrifices
for forty years in the wilderness, O house of Israel?
43 No; you took along the tent of Moloch,
and the star of your god Rephan,
the images that you made to worship;
so I will remove you beyond Babylon.
44 Our ancestors had the tent of testimony in the wilderness, as God* directed when he spoke to Moses, ordering him to make it according to the pattern he had seen.
45Our ancestors in turn brought it in with Joshua when they dispossessed the nations that God drove out before our ancestors. And it was there until the time of David,
46who found favour with God and asked that he might find a dwelling-place for the house of Jacob.*
47But it was Solomon who built a house for him.
48Yet the Most High does not dwell in houses made by human hands;* as the prophet says,
49 Heaven is my throne,
and the earth is my footstool.
What kind of house will you build for me, says the Lord,
or what is the place of my rest?
50 Did not my hand make all these things?
51 You stiff-necked people, uncircumcised in heart and ears, you are for ever opposing the Holy Spirit, just as your ancestors used to do. 52Which of the prophets did your ancestors not persecute? They killed those who foretold the coming of the Righteous One, and now you have become his betrayers and murderers. 53You are the ones that received the law as ordained by angels, and yet you have not kept it.
54 When they heard these things, they became enraged and ground their teeth at Stephen.* 55But filled with the Holy Spirit, he gazed into heaven and saw the glory of God and Jesus standing at the right hand of God. 56Look, he said, I see the heavens opened and the Son of Man standing at the right hand of God! 57But they covered their ears, and with a loud shout all rushed together against him. 58Then they dragged him out of the city and began to stone him; and the witnesses laid their coats at the feet of a young man named Saul. 59While they were stoning Stephen, he prayed, Lord Jesus, receive my spirit. 60Then he knelt down and cried out in a loud voice, Lord, do not hold this sin against them. When he had said this, he died.* 81And Saul approved of their killing him.
That day a severe persecution began against the church in Jerusalem, and all except the apostles were scattered throughout the countryside of Judea and Samaria. 2Devout men buried Stephen and made loud lamentation over him. 3But Saul was ravaging the church by entering house after house; dragging off both men and women, he committed them to prison.
4 Now those who were scattered went from place to place, proclaiming the word. 5Philip went down to the city* of Samaria and proclaimed the Messiah* to them. 6The crowds with one accord listened eagerly to what was said by Philip, hearing and seeing the signs that he did, 7for unclean spirits, crying with loud shrieks, came out of many who were possessed; and many others who were paralysed or lame were cured. 8So there was great joy in that city.
9 Now a certain man named Simon had previously practised magic in the city and amazed the people of Samaria, saying that he was someone great. 10All of them, from the least to the greatest, listened to him eagerly, saying, This man is the power of God that is called Great. 11And they listened eagerly to him because for a long time he had amazed them with his magic. 12But when they believed Philip, who was proclaiming the good news about the kingdom of God and the name of Jesus Christ, they were baptized, both men and women. 13Even Simon himself believed. After being baptized, he stayed constantly with Philip and was amazed when he saw the signs and great miracles that took place.
14 Now when the apostles at Jerusalem heard that Samaria had accepted the word of God, they sent Peter and John to them. 15The two went down and prayed for them that they might receive the Holy Spirit 16(for as yet the Spirit had not come* upon any of them; they had only been baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus). 17Then Peter and John* laid their hands on them, and they received the Holy Spirit. 18Now when Simon saw that the Spirit was given through the laying on of the apostles hands, he offered them money, 19saying, Give me also this power so that anyone on whom I lay my hands may receive the Holy Spirit. 20But Peter said to him, May your silver perish with you, because you thought you could obtain Gods gift with money! 21You have no part or share in this, for your heart is not right before God. 22Repent therefore of this wickedness of yours, and pray to the Lord that, if possible, the intent of your heart may be forgiven you. 23For I see that you are in the gall of bitterness and the chains of wickedness. 24Simon answered, Pray for me to the Lord, that nothing of what you* have said may happen to me.
25 Now after Peter and John* had testified and spoken the word of the Lord, they returned to Jerusalem, proclaiming the good news to many villages of the Samaritans.
26 Then an angel of the Lord said to Philip, Get up and go towards the south* to the road that goes down from Jerusalem to Gaza. (This is a wilderness road.)
27So he got up and went. Now there was an Ethiopian eunuch, a court official of the Candace, queen of the Ethiopians, in charge of her entire treasury. He had come to Jerusalem to worship
28and was returning home; seated in his chariot, he was reading the prophet Isaiah.
29Then the Spirit said to Philip, Go over to this chariot and join it.
30So Philip ran up to it and heard him reading the prophet Isaiah. He asked, Do you understand what you are reading?
31He replied, How can I, unless someone guides me? And he invited Philip to get in and sit beside him.
32Now the passage of the scripture that he was reading was this:
Like a sheep he was led to the slaughter,
and like a lamb silent before its shearer,
so he does not open his mouth.
33 In his humiliation justice was denied him.
Who can describe his generation?
For his life is taken away from the earth.
34The eunuch asked Philip, About whom, may I ask you, does the prophet say this, about himself or about someone else? 35Then Philip began to speak, and starting with this scripture, he proclaimed to him the good news about Jesus. 36As they were going along the road, they came to some water; and the eunuch said, Look, here is water! What is to prevent me from being baptized?* 38He commanded the chariot to stop, and both of them, Philip and the eunuch, went down into the water, and Philip* baptized him. 39When they came up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord snatched Philip away; the eunuch saw him no more, and went on his way rejoicing. 40But Philip found himself at Azotus, and as he was passing through the region, he proclaimed the good news to all the towns until he came to Caesarea.
9Meanwhile Saul, still breathing threats and murder against the disciples of the Lord, went to the high priest 2and asked him for letters to the synagogues at Damascus, so that if he found any who belonged to the Way, men or women, he might bring them bound to Jerusalem. 3Now as he was going along and approaching Damascus, suddenly a light from heaven flashed around him. 4He fell to the ground and heard a voice saying to him, Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me? 5He asked, Who are you, Lord? The reply came, I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting. 6But get up and enter the city, and you will be told what you are to do. 7The men who were travelling with him stood speechless because they heard the voice but saw no one. 8Saul got up from the ground, and though his eyes were open, he could see nothing; so they led him by the hand and brought him into Damascus. 9For three days he was without sight, and neither ate nor drank.
10 Now there was a disciple in Damascus named Ananias. The Lord said to him in a vision, Ananias. He answered, Here I am, Lord. 11The Lord said to him, Get up and go to the street called Straight, and at the house of Judas look for a man of Tarsus named Saul. At this moment he is praying, 12and he has seen in a vision* a man named Ananias come in and lay his hands on him so that he might regain his sight. 13But Ananias answered, Lord, I have heard from many about this man, how much evil he has done to your saints in Jerusalem; 14and here he has authority from the chief priests to bind all who invoke your name. 15But the Lord said to him, Go, for he is an instrument whom I have chosen to bring my name before Gentiles and kings and before the people of Israel; 16I myself will show him how much he must suffer for the sake of my name. 17So Ananias went and entered the house. He laid his hands on Saul* and said, Brother Saul, the Lord Jesus, who appeared to you on your way here, has sent me so that you may regain your sight and be filled with the Holy Spirit. 18And immediately something like scales fell from his eyes, and his sight was restored. Then he got up and was baptized, 19and after taking some food, he regained his strength.
For several days he was with the disciples in Damascus, 20and immediately he began to proclaim Jesus in the synagogues, saying, He is the Son of God. 21All who heard him were amazed and said, Is not this the man who made havoc in Jerusalem among those who invoked this name? And has he not come here for the purpose of bringing them bound before the chief priests? 22Saul became increasingly more powerful and confounded the Jews who lived in Damascus by proving that Jesus* was the Messiah.*
23 After some time had passed, the Jews plotted to kill him, 24but their plot became known to Saul. They were watching the gates day and night so that they might kill him; 25but his disciples took him by night and let him down through an opening in the wall,* lowering him in a basket.
26 When he had come to Jerusalem, he attempted to join the disciples; and they were all afraid of him, for they did not believe that he was a disciple. 27But Barnabas took him, brought him to the apostles, and described for them how on the road he had seen the Lord, who had spoken to him, and how in Damascus he had spoken boldly in the name of Jesus. 28So he went in and out among them in Jerusalem, speaking boldly in the name of the Lord. 29He spoke and argued with the Hellenists; but they were attempting to kill him. 30When the believers* learned of it, they brought him down to Caesarea and sent him off to Tarsus.
31 Meanwhile the church throughout Judea, Galilee, and Samaria had peace and was built up. Living in the fear of the Lord and in the comfort of the Holy Spirit, it increased in numbers.
32 Now as Peter went here and there among all the believers,* he came down also to the saints living in Lydda. 33There he found a man named Aeneas, who had been bedridden for eight years, for he was paralysed. 34Peter said to him, Aeneas, Jesus Christ heals you; get up and make your bed! And immediately he got up. 35And all the residents of Lydda and Sharon saw him and turned to the Lord.
36 Now in Joppa there was a disciple whose name was Tabitha, which in Greek is Dorcas.* She was devoted to good works and acts of charity. 37At that time she became ill and died. When they had washed her, they laid her in a room upstairs. 38Since Lydda was near Joppa, the disciples, who heard that Peter was there, sent two men to him with the request, Please come to us without delay. 39So Peter got up and went with them; and when he arrived, they took him to the room upstairs. All the widows stood beside him, weeping and showing tunics and other clothing that Dorcas had made while she was with them. 40Peter put all of them outside, and then he knelt down and prayed. He turned to the body and said, Tabitha, get up. Then she opened her eyes, and seeing Peter, she sat up. 41He gave her his hand and helped her up. Then calling the saints and widows, he showed her to be alive. 42This became known throughout Joppa, and many believed in the Lord. 43Meanwhile he stayed in Joppa for some time with a certain Simon, a tanner.
10In Caesarea there was a man named Cornelius, a centurion of the Italian Cohort, as it was called. 2He was a devout man who feared God with all his household; he gave alms generously to the people and prayed constantly to God. 3One afternoon at about three oclock he had a vision in which he clearly saw an angel of God coming in and saying to him, Cornelius. 4He stared at him in terror and said, What is it, Lord? He answered, Your prayers and your alms have ascended as a memorial before God. 5Now send men to Joppa for a certain Simon who is called Peter; 6he is lodging with Simon, a tanner, whose house is by the seaside. 7When the angel who spoke to him had left, he called two of his slaves and a devout soldier from the ranks of those who served him, 8and after telling them everything, he sent them to Joppa.
9 About noon the next day, as they were on their journey and approaching the city, Peter went up on the roof to pray. 10He became hungry and wanted something to eat; and while it was being prepared, he fell into a trance. 11He saw the heaven opened and something like a large sheet coming down, being lowered to the ground by its four corners. 12In it were all kinds of four-footed creatures and reptiles and birds of the air. 13Then he heard a voice saying, Get up, Peter; kill and eat. 14But Peter said, By no means, Lord; for I have never eaten anything that is profane or unclean. 15The voice said to him again, a second time, What God has made clean, you must not call profane. 16This happened three times, and the thing was suddenly taken up to heaven.
17 Now while Peter was greatly puzzled about what to make of the vision that he had seen, suddenly the men sent by Cornelius appeared. They were asking for Simons house and were standing by the gate. 18They called out to ask whether Simon, who was called Peter, was staying there. 19While Peter was still thinking about the vision, the Spirit said to him, Look, three* men are searching for you. 20Now get up, go down, and go with them without hesitation; for I have sent them. 21So Peter went down to the men and said, I am the one you are looking for; what is the reason for your coming? 22They answered, Cornelius, a centurion, an upright and God-fearing man, who is well spoken of by the whole Jewish nation, was directed by a holy angel to send for you to come to his house and to hear what you have to say. 23So Peter* invited them in and gave them lodging.
The next day he got up and went with them, and some of the believers* from Joppa accompanied him. 24The following day they came to Caesarea. Cornelius was expecting them and had called together his relatives and close friends. 25On Peters arrival Cornelius met him, and falling at his feet, worshipped him. 26But Peter made him get up, saying, Stand up; I am only a mortal. 27And as he talked with him, he went in and found that many had assembled; 28and he said to them, You yourselves know that it is unlawful for a Jew to associate with or to visit a Gentile; but God has shown me that I should not call anyone profane or unclean. 29So when I was sent for, I came without objection. Now may I ask why you sent for me?
30 Cornelius replied, Four days ago at this very hour, at three oclock, I was praying in my house when suddenly a man in dazzling clothes stood before me. 31He said, Cornelius, your prayer has been heard and your alms have been remembered before God. 32Send therefore to Joppa and ask for Simon, who is called Peter; he is staying in the home of Simon, a tanner, by the sea. 33Therefore I sent for you immediately, and you have been kind enough to come. So now all of us are here in the presence of God to listen to all that the Lord has commanded you to say.
34 Then Peter began to speak to them: I truly understand that God shows no partiality, 35but in every nation anyone who fears him and does what is right is acceptable to him. 36You know the message he sent to the people of Israel, preaching peace by Jesus Christhe is Lord of all. 37That message spread throughout Judea, beginning in Galilee after the baptism that John announced: 38how God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power; how he went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with him. 39We are witnesses to all that he did both in Judea and in Jerusalem. They put him to death by hanging him on a tree; 40but God raised him on the third day and allowed him to appear, 41not to all the people but to us who were chosen by God as witnesses, and who ate and drank with him after he rose from the dead. 42He commanded us to preach to the people and to testify that he is the one ordained by God as judge of the living and the dead. 43All the prophets testify about him that everyone who believes in him receives forgiveness of sins through his name.
44 While Peter was still speaking, the Holy Spirit fell upon all who heard the word. 45The circumcised believers who had come with Peter were astounded that the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out even on the Gentiles, 46for they heard them speaking in tongues and extolling God. Then Peter said, 47Can anyone withhold the water for baptizing these people who have received the Holy Spirit just as we have? 48So he ordered them to be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ. Then they invited him to stay for several days.
11Now the apostles and the believers* who were in Judea heard that the Gentiles had also accepted the word of God.
2So when Peter went up to Jerusalem, the circumcised believers* criticized him,
3saying, Why did you go to uncircumcised men and eat with them?
4Then Peter began to explain it to them, step by step, saying,
5I was in the city of Joppa praying, and in a trance I saw a vision. There was something like a large sheet coming down from heaven, being lowered by its four corners; and it came close to me.
6As I looked at it closely I saw four-footed animals, beasts of prey, reptiles, and birds of the air.
7I also heard a voice saying to me, Get up, Peter; kill and eat.
8But I replied, By no means, Lord; for nothing profane or unclean has ever entered my mouth.
9But a second time the voice answered from heaven, What God has made clean, you must not call profane.
10This happened three times; then everything was pulled up again to heaven.
11At that very moment three men, sent to me from Caesarea, arrived at the house where we were.
12The Spirit told me to go with them and not to make a distinction between them and us.* These six brothers also accompanied me, and we entered the mans house.
13He told us how he had seen the angel standing in his house and saying, Send to Joppa and bring Simon, who is called Peter;
14he will give you a message by which you and your entire household will be saved.
15And as I began to speak, the Holy Spirit fell upon them just as it had upon us at the beginning.
16And I remembered the word of the Lord, how he had said, John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.
17If then God gave them the same gift that he gave us when we believed in the Lord Jesus Christ, who was I that I could hinder God?
18When they heard this, they were silenced. And they praised God, saying, Then God has given even to the Gentiles the repentance that leads to life.
19 Now those who were scattered because of the persecution that took place over Stephen travelled as far as Phoenicia, Cyprus, and Antioch, and they spoke the word to no one except Jews. 20But among them were some men of Cyprus and Cyrene who, on coming to Antioch, spoke to the Hellenists* also, proclaiming the Lord Jesus. 21The hand of the Lord was with them, and a great number became believers and turned to the Lord. 22News of this came to the ears of the church in Jerusalem, and they sent Barnabas to Antioch. 23When he came and saw the grace of God, he rejoiced, and he exhorted them all to remain faithful to the Lord with steadfast devotion; 24for he was a good man, full of the Holy Spirit and of faith. And a great many people were brought to the Lord. 25Then Barnabas went to Tarsus to look for Saul, 26and when he had found him, he brought him to Antioch. So it was that for an entire year they associated with* the church and taught a great many people, and it was in Antioch that the disciples were first called Christians.
27 At that time prophets came down from Jerusalem to Antioch. 28One of them named Agabus stood up and predicted by the Spirit that there would be a severe famine over all the world; and this took place during the reign of Claudius. 29The disciples determined that according to their ability, each would send relief to the believers* living in Judea; 30this they did, sending it to the elders by Barnabas and Saul.
12About that time King Herod laid violent hands upon some who belonged to the church. 2He had James, the brother of John, killed with the sword. 3After he saw that it pleased the Jews, he proceeded to arrest Peter also. (This was during the festival of Unleavened Bread.) 4When he had seized him, he put him in prison and handed him over to four squads of soldiers to guard him, intending to bring him out to the people after the Passover. 5While Peter was kept in prison, the church prayed fervently to God for him.
6 The very night before Herod was going to bring him out, Peter, bound with two chains, was sleeping between two soldiers, while guards in front of the door were keeping watch over the prison. 7Suddenly an angel of the Lord appeared and a light shone in the cell. He tapped Peter on the side and woke him, saying, Get up quickly. And the chains fell off his wrists. 8The angel said to him, Fasten your belt and put on your sandals. He did so. Then he said to him, Wrap your cloak around you and follow me. 9Peter* went out and followed him; he did not realize that what was happening with the angels help was real; he thought he was seeing a vision. 10After they had passed the first and the second guard, they came before the iron gate leading into the city. It opened for them of its own accord, and they went outside and walked along a lane, when suddenly the angel left him. 11Then Peter came to himself and said, Now I am sure that the Lord has sent his angel and rescued me from the hands of Herod and from all that the Jewish people were expecting.
12 As soon as he realized this, he went to the house of Mary, the mother of John whose other name was Mark, where many had gathered and were praying. 13When he knocked at the outer gate, a maid named Rhoda came to answer. 14On recognizing Peters voice, she was so overjoyed that, instead of opening the gate, she ran in and announced that Peter was standing at the gate. 15They said to her, You are out of your mind! But she insisted that it was so. They said, It is his angel. 16Meanwhile, Peter continued knocking; and when they opened the gate, they saw him and were amazed. 17He motioned to them with his hand to be silent, and described for them how the Lord had brought him out of the prison. And he added, Tell this to James and to the believers.* Then he left and went to another place.
18 When morning came, there was no small commotion among the soldiers over what had become of Peter. 19When Herod had searched for him and could not find him, he examined the guards and ordered them to be put to death. Then he went down from Judea to Caesarea and stayed there.
20 Now Herod* was angry with the people of Tyre and Sidon. So they came to him in a body; and after winning over Blastus, the kings chamberlain, they asked for a reconciliation, because their country depended on the kings country for food. 21On an appointed day Herod put on his royal robes, took his seat on the platform, and delivered a public address to them. 22The people kept shouting, The voice of a god, and not of a mortal! 23And immediately, because he had not given the glory to God, an angel of the Lord struck him down, and he was eaten by worms and died.
24 But the word of God continued to advance and gain adherents.
25Then after completing their mission Barnabas and Saul returned to* Jerusalem and brought with them John, whose other name was Mark.
13Now in the church at Antioch there were prophets and teachers: Barnabas, Simeon who was called Niger, Lucius of Cyrene, Manaen a member of the court of Herod the ruler,* and Saul. 2While they were worshipping the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said, Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them. 3Then after fasting and praying they laid their hands on them and sent them off.
4 So, being sent out by the Holy Spirit, they went down to Seleucia; and from there they sailed to Cyprus. 5When they arrived at Salamis, they proclaimed the word of God in the synagogues of the Jews. And they had John also to assist them. 6When they had gone through the whole island as far as Paphos, they met a certain magician, a Jewish false prophet, named Bar-Jesus. 7He was with the proconsul, Sergius Paulus, an intelligent man, who summoned Barnabas and Saul and wanted to hear the word of God. 8But the magician Elymas (for that is the translation of his name) opposed them and tried to turn the proconsul away from the faith. 9But Saul, also known as Paul, filled with the Holy Spirit, looked intently at him 10and said, You son of the devil, you enemy of all righteousness, full of all deceit and villainy, will you not stop making crooked the straight paths of the Lord? 11And now listenthe hand of the Lord is against you, and you will be blind for a while, unable to see the sun. Immediately mist and darkness came over him, and he went about groping for someone to lead him by the hand. 12When the proconsul saw what had happened, he believed, for he was astonished at the teaching about the Lord.
13 Then Paul and his companions set sail from Paphos and came to Perga in Pamphylia. John, however, left them and returned to Jerusalem; 14but they went on from Perga and came to Antioch in Pisidia. And on the sabbath day they went into the synagogue and sat down. 15After the reading of the law and the prophets, the officials of the synagogue sent them a message, saying, Brothers, if you have any word of exhortation for the people, give it. 16So Paul stood up and with a gesture began to speak:
You Israelites,* and others who fear God, listen. 17The God of this people Israel chose our ancestors and made the people great during their stay in the land of Egypt, and with uplifted arm he led them out of it. 18For about forty years he put up with* them in the wilderness. 19After he had destroyed seven nations in the land of Canaan, he gave them their land as an inheritance 20for about four hundred and fifty years. After that he gave them judges until the time of the prophet Samuel. 21Then they asked for a king; and God gave them Saul son of Kish, a man of the tribe of Benjamin, who reigned for forty years. 22When he had removed him, he made David their king. In his testimony about him he said, I have found David, son of Jesse, to be a man after my heart, who will carry out all my wishes. 23Of this mans posterity God has brought to Israel a Saviour, Jesus, as he promised; 24before his coming John had already proclaimed a baptism of repentance to all the people of Israel. 25And as John was finishing his work, he said, What do you suppose that I am? I am not he. No, but one is coming after me; I am not worthy to untie the thong of the sandals* on his feet.
26 My brothers, you descendants of Abrahams family, and others who fear God, to us* the message of this salvation has been sent.
27Because the residents of Jerusalem and their leaders did not recognize him or understand the words of the prophets that are read every sabbath, they fulfilled those words by condemning him.
28Even though they found no cause for a sentence of death, they asked Pilate to have him killed.
29When they had carried out everything that was written about him, they took him down from the tree and laid him in a tomb.
30But God raised him from the dead;
31and for many days he appeared to those who came up with him from Galilee to Jerusalem, and they are now his witnesses to the people.
32And we bring you the good news that what God promised to our ancestors
33he has fulfilled for us, their children, by raising Jesus; as also it is written in the second psalm,
You are my Son;
today I have begotten you.
34As to his raising him from the dead, no more to return to corruption, he has spoken in this way,
I will give you the holy promises made to David.
35Therefore he has also said in another psalm,
You will not let your Holy One experience corruption.
36For David, after he had served the purpose of God in his own generation, died,* was laid beside his ancestors, and experienced corruption; 37but he whom God raised up experienced no corruption. 38Let it be known to you therefore, my brothers, that through this man forgiveness of sins is proclaimed to you; 39by this Jesus* everyone who believes is set free from all those sins* from which you could not be freed by the law of Moses. 40Beware, therefore, that what the prophets said does not happen to you:
41 Look, you scoffers!
Be amazed and perish,
for in your days I am doing a work,
a work that you will never believe, even if someone tells you.
42 As Paul and Barnabas* were going out, the people urged them to speak about these things again the next sabbath. 43When the meeting of the synagogue broke up, many Jews and devout converts to Judaism followed Paul and Barnabas, who spoke to them and urged them to continue in the grace of God.
44 The next sabbath almost the whole city gathered to hear the word of the Lord.*
45But when the Jews saw the crowds, they were filled with jealousy; and blaspheming, they contradicted what was spoken by Paul.
46Then both Paul and Barnabas spoke out boldly, saying, It was necessary that the word of God should be spoken first to you. Since you reject it and judge yourselves to be unworthy of eternal life, we are now turning to the Gentiles.
47For so the Lord has commanded us, saying,
I have set you to be a light for the Gentiles,
so that you may bring salvation to the ends of the earth.
48 When the Gentiles heard this, they were glad and praised the word of the Lord; and as many as had been destined for eternal life became believers. 49Thus the word of the Lord spread throughout the region. 50But the Jews incited the devout women of high standing and the leading men of the city, and stirred up persecution against Paul and Barnabas, and drove them out of their region. 51So they shook the dust off their feet in protest against them, and went to Iconium. 52And the disciples were filled with joy and with the Holy Spirit.
14The same thing occurred in Iconium, where Paul and Barnabas* went into the Jewish synagogue and spoke in such a way that a great number of both Jews and Greeks became believers. 2But the unbelieving Jews stirred up the Gentiles and poisoned their minds against the brothers. 3So they remained for a long time, speaking boldly for the Lord, who testified to the word of his grace by granting signs and wonders to be done through them. 4But the residents of the city were divided; some sided with the Jews, and some with the apostles. 5And when an attempt was made by both Gentiles and Jews, with their rulers, to maltreat them and to stone them, 6the apostles* learned of it and fled to Lystra and Derbe, cities of Lycaonia, and to the surrounding country; 7and there they continued proclaiming the good news.
8 In Lystra there was a man sitting who could not use his feet and had never walked, for he had been crippled from birth. 9He listened to Paul as he was speaking. And Paul, looking at him intently and seeing that he had faith to be healed, 10said in a loud voice, Stand upright on your feet. And the man* sprang up and began to walk.
The New Revised Standard Version (Anglicized Edition), copyright 1989, 1995 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
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10 February 2011