22 “Brethren and fathers, listen to what I now say to you in my defense.” 2 And at hearing him call to them in the Hebrew dialect they grew quieter. And he said 3 “I am a Jew, born at Tarsus in Cilicia but brought up in this city, schooled at Gamaliel’s feet in the precise observance of our fathers’ law, originally a zealot for God such as you all of you are today, 4 who persecuted this movement to the death, putting both men and women in chains and committing them to prison, 5 * as even the High Priest attests, and all the council of elders, from whom I also received letters to the brothers at Damascus and was on my way there to bring to Jerusalem in fetters to receive punishment those also who were there. 6 And it befell me as I was on my way and nearing Damascus that about noon, all of a sudden, a flood of light flashed round me out of the sky, 7 and I fell to the ground and heard a voice say to me ‘Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me?’ 8 And I said ‘Who are you, sir?’ and he said to me ‘I am Jesus, the Nazarene Jesus whom you are persecuting.’ 9 And those who were with me saw the display of light but did not hear the voice of the one that spoke to me. 10 And I said ‘What shall I do, sir?’ And the Lord said to me ‘Stand up and go to Damascus, and there you will be told about everything that is set for you to do.’ 11 And when from the glory of that light I was not able to see, I came into Damascus led by the hand by those who were with me. 12 But one Hananiah, a man conscientiously faithful to the law, vouched for by all the resident Jews, 13 ** came to me and stood over me and said to me ‘Brother Saul, look up’; and that moment I looked up at him. 14 And he said ‘The God of our fathers has appointed you to know his will and to see the Righteous One and hear a voice from his mouth, 15 because you shall be to all men his witness of what you have seen and heard. 16 And now why do you put it off? stand up and be baptized and wash off your sins, invoking his name.’ 17 And when I was back in Jerusalem and was praying in the temple-precinct I had a trance 18 and saw him saying to me ‘Hurry out of Jerusalem right off, because they will not accept testimony of yours about me.’ 19 And I said ‘Lord, they know themselves I was imprisoning and beating in the different synagogues those who believed on thee; 20 and when the blood of thy witness Stephen was being shed I too was standing by and joined in approving it and guarded the cloaks of those who took his life.’ 21 And he said to me ‘Go, because I will send you far out to the foreigners.’—” 22 And they heard him up to that sentence, and raised their voices saying “Get a fellow like that off the earth, it is not right he should be alive.” 23 And as they were shouting and throwing off their cloaks and flinging dust into the air 24 the tribune ordered him taken into the barracks, telling them to have him examined with whips to ascertain the reason why they were making such an outcry against him. 25 * But as they spread-eagled him for the lash Paul said to the posted centurion “Do you have the right to whip a Roman national without a sentence?” 26 And at hearing it the centurion came to the tribune and reported to him, saying “What are you proposing to do? this man is a Roman.” 27 And the tribune came to him and said to him “Say, are you a Roman?” And he said “Yes.” 28 And the tribune answered “I got that citizenship for a good-sized sum.” And Paul said “And I was born to it.” 29 So at once those who were going to examine him stood away from him. And the tribune too was afraid at realizing that it was a Roman and he had tied him up. 30 * And on the next day, wishing to find out the facts as to what he was accused of by the Jews, he unfettered him, and gave the word for the chief priests and all the Sanhedrin to come together, and brought Paul down and set him before them.
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