1Paul looked straight at the Sanhedrin. “My brothers,” he said, “I have always done my duty to God. To this day I feel that I have done nothing wrong.” 2Ananias the high priest heard this. So he ordered the men standing near Paul to hit him on the mouth. 3Then Paul said to him, “You pretender! God will hit you! You sit there and judge me by the law. But you yourself broke the law when you commanded them to hit me!”
4Those who were standing near Paul spoke to him. They said, “How dare you talk like that to God’s high priest!”
5Paul replied, “Brothers, I didn’t realize he was the high priest. It is written, ‘Do not speak evil about the ruler of your people.’ ” (Exodus 22:28)
6Paul knew that some of them were Sadducees and the others were Pharisees. So he called out to the members of the Sanhedrin. “My brothers,” he said, “I am a Pharisee. I come from a family of Pharisees. I believe that people will rise from the dead. That’s why I am on trial.” 7When he said this, the Pharisees and the Sadducees started to argue. They began to take sides. 8The Sadducees say that people will not rise from the dead. They don’t believe there are angels or spirits either. But the Pharisees believe all these things.
9People were causing trouble and making a lot of noise. Some of the teachers of the law who were Pharisees stood up. They argued strongly. “We find nothing wrong with this man,” they said. “What if a spirit or an angel has spoken to him?” 10The people arguing were getting out of control. The commanding officer was afraid that Paul would be torn to pieces by them. So he ordered the soldiers to go down and take him away from them by force. The officer had told them to bring Paul into the fort.
11The next night the Lord stood near Paul. He said, “Be brave! You have told people about me in Jerusalem. You must do the same in Rome.”
The Plan to Kill Paul
12The next morning some Jews gathered secretly to make plans against Paul. They made a promise to themselves. They promised that they would not eat or drink anything until they killed him. 13More than 40 men took part in this plan. 14They went to the chief priests and the elders. They said, “We have made a special promise to God. We will not eat anything until we have killed Paul. 15Now then, you and the Sanhedrin must make an appeal to the commanding officer. Ask him to bring Paul to you. Pretend you want more facts about his case. We are ready to kill him before he gets here.”
16But Paul’s nephew heard about this plan. So he went into the fort and told Paul.
17Then Paul called one of the commanders. He said to him, “Take this young man to the commanding officer. He has something to tell him.” 18So the commander took Paul’s nephew to the officer.
The commander said, “Paul, the prisoner, sent for me. He asked me to bring this young man to you. The young man has something to tell you.”
19The commanding officer took the young man by the hand. He spoke to him in private. “What do you want to tell me?” the officer asked.
20He said, “Some Jews have agreed to ask you to bring Paul to the Sanhedrin tomorrow. They will pretend they want more facts about him. 21Don’t give in to them. More than 40 of them are waiting in hiding to attack him. They have promised that they will not eat or drink anything until they have killed him. They are ready now. All they need is for you to bring Paul to the Sanhedrin.”
22The commanding officer let the young man go. But he gave him a warning. “Don’t tell anyone you have reported this to me,” he said.
Paul Is Taken to Caesarea
23Then the commanding officer called for two of his commanders. He ordered them, “Gather a company of 200 soldiers, 70 horsemen and 200 men armed with spears. Get them ready to go to Caesarea at nine o’clock tonight. 24Provide horses for Paul so that he may be taken safely to Governor Felix.”
25Here is the letter the officer wrote.
26I, Claudius Lysias, am writing this letter.
I am sending it to His Excellency, Governor Felix.
27The Jews grabbed Paul. They were about to kill him. But I came with my soldiers and saved him. I had learned that he is a Roman citizen. 28I wanted to know why they were bringing charges against him. So I brought him to their Sanhedrin. 29I found out that the charge against him was based on questions about their law. But there was no charge against him worthy of death or prison. 30Then I was told about a plan against the man. So I sent him to you at once. I also ordered those bringing charges against him to present their case to you.
31The soldiers followed their orders. During the night they took Paul with them. They brought him as far as Antipatris. 32The next day they let the horsemen go on with him. The soldiers returned to the fort. 33The horsemen arrived in Caesarea. They gave the letter to the governor. Then they handed Paul over to him. 34The governor read the letter. He asked Paul where he was from. He learned that Paul was from Cilicia. 35So he said, “I will hear your case when those bringing charges against you get here.” Then he ordered that Paul be kept under guard in Herod’s palace.
123:1 Mdo 22:30; 22:5; 1Tim 3:9; Ebr 10:22Paulo akawakazia macho wale wajumbe wa baraza, akasema, “Ndugu zangu, nimetimiza wajibu wangu kwa Mungu kwa dhamiri safi kabisa hadi leo.” 223:2 Mdo 24:1; Yn 14:22Kwa ajili ya jambo hili kuhani mkuu Anania akaamuru wale waliokuwa karibu na Paulo wampige kofi kinywani. 323:3 Mt 23:27; Law 19:15; Yn 7:31Ndipo Paulo akamwambia, “Mungu atakupiga wewe, ewe ukuta uliopakwa chokaa! Wewe umeketi hapo ili kunihukumu kwa mujibu wa sheria, lakini wewe mwenyewe unakiuka sheria kwa kuamuru kwamba nipigwe kinyume cha sheria!”
4Wale watu waliokuwa wamesimama karibu na Paulo wakamwambia, “Je, wewe wathubutu kumtukana kuhani mkuu wa Mungu?”
523:5 Kut 22:28Paulo akajibu, “Ndugu zangu, sikujua kwamba yeye alikuwa kuhani mkuu. Kwa maana imeandikwa, ‘Usimnenee mabaya kiongozi wa watu wako.’ ”
623:6 Mdo 22:5; 26:5; 21:15, 21; 26:8; Flp 3:5Paulo alipotambua ya kuwa baadhi yao walikuwa Masadukayo na wengine ni Mafarisayo, akapaza sauti kwenye baraza, “Ndugu zangu, mimi ni Farisayo, mwana Farisayo. Hapa nimeshtakiwa kuhusu tumaini langu katika ufufuo wa wafu.” 7Aliposema haya, farakano likaanza kati ya Mafarisayo na Masadukayo na baraza lote likagawanyika. 823:8 Mt 22:23; Mk 2:16; Lk 23:4; Mdo 22:7, 17, 18(Kwa maana Masadukayo wanasema kwamba hakuna ufufuo, wala hakuna malaika au roho, lakini Mafarisayo wanaamini haya yote.)
923:9 Mdo 25:25; 5:39; Mk 2:16; Mdo 23:29; Yer 26:16; Lk 23:4; Mdo 26:31; 28:18; 22:7; 18:18Kukawa na ghasia kubwa, nao baadhi ya walimu wa sheria ambao ni Mafarisayo, wakasimama wakapinga kwa nguvu wakisema, “Hatuoni kosa lolote la mtu huyu! Huenda ikawa roho au malaika amezungumza naye” 1023:10 Mdo 21:34Ugomvi ukawa mkubwa kiasi kwamba yule jemadari akahofu kuwa wangemrarua Paulo vipande vipande, akaamuru vikosi vya askari vishuke na kumwondoa Paulo katikati yao kwa nguvu na kumleta ndani ya ngome ya jeshi.
1123:11 Mdo 18:9; 19:21; 28:23Usiku uliofuata, Bwana akasimama karibu naye akamwambia, “Jipe moyo! Kama vile ulivyonishuhudia hapa Yerusalemu, hivyo imekupasa kunishuhudia huko Rumi pia.”
Hila Za Kumuua Paulo
1223:12 Mdo 20:3; 25:3; 25:3Kulipopambazuka Wayahudi wakafanya shauri pamoja na kujifunga kwa kiapo kwamba hawatakula wala kunywa mpaka wawe wamemuua Paulo. 13Waliofanya mpango huo walikuwa zaidi ya watu arobaini. 1423:14 Mdo 23:1; 14:15Wakawaendea viongozi wa makuhani na wazee na kusema, “Tumejifunga pamoja kwa kiapo kwamba hatutakula wala kunywa mpaka tuwe tumemuua Paulo. 1523:15 Mdo 22:30Hivyo basi, wewe pamoja na baraza, inawapasa mkamjulishe jemadari ili amteremshe Paulo kwenu, mjifanye kama mnataka kufanya uchunguzi wa kina zaidi wa shauri lake. Nasi tuko tayari kumuua kabla hajafika hapa.”
16Lakini mtoto wa dada yake Paulo aliposikia juu ya shauri hilo baya, alikwenda kule kwenye ngome ya askari na kumweleza Paulo.
17Ndipo Paulo akamwita mmoja wa viongozi wa askari, akamwambia, “Mpeleke huyu kijana kwa jemadari, analo jambo la kumweleza.” 1823:18 Efe 3:1Hivyo yule kiongozi wa askari akampeleka yule kijana kwa jemadari, akamwambia, “Paulo yule mfungwa aliniita na kuniomba nimlete huyu kijana kwako, kwa sababu ana neno la kukueleza.”
19Yule jemadari akamshika yule kijana mkono, akampeleka kando na kumuuliza, “Unataka kuniambia nini?”
2023:20 Mdo 23:13Yule kijana akasema, “Wayahudi wamekubaliana wakuombe umpeleke Paulo kwenye baraza lao kesho kwa kisingizio kwamba wanataka kufanya uchunguzi wa kina wa shauri lake. 21Lakini usishawishiwe nao kwa maana zaidi ya watu arobaini wanamvizia. Wamejifunga kwa kiapo kwamba hawatakula wala kunywa mpaka wawe wamemuua Paulo. Sasa wako tayari, wanangoja idhini yako kwa ajili ya ombi lao.”
22Yule jemadari akamruhusu yule kijana aende na akamwonya, akisema, “Usimwambie mtu yeyote kwamba umenieleza habari hizi.”
Paulo Ahamishiwa Kaisaria
2323:23 Mdo 8:40Kisha yule jemadari akawaita viongozi wake wawili wa askari akawaambia, “Jiandaeni kuondoka saa tatu usiku huu kuelekea Kaisaria pamoja na askari 200, wapanda farasi sabini na watu 200 wenye mikuki. 2423:24 Mdo 24:1-3, 10; 25; 14Pia tayarisheni na farasi watakaotumiwa na Paulo, mkampeleke salama kwa mtawala Feliksi.”
25Kisha akaandika barua kwa Feliksi kama ifuatavyo:
2623:26 Mdo 25:14; 15:23Klaudio Lisia,
Kwa Mtawala, Mtukufu Feliksi:
2723:27 Mdo 21:32; 21:33; 22:25-29Mtu huyu alikamatwa na Wayahudi wakakaribia kumuua, lakini nikaja na vikosi vyangu vya askari nikamwokoa, kwa kuwa nilipata habari kwamba yeye ni raiya wa Rumi. 2823:28 Mdo 22:30Nilitaka kujua kwa nini walikuwa wanamshutumu, hivyo nikamleta mbele ya baraza lao. 2923:29 Mdo 18:15; 25:19; 26:31Ndipo nikaona kuwa alikuwa anashutumiwa kwa mambo yanayohusu sheria yao, lakini hakuwa ameshtakiwa kwa jambo lolote linalostahili kifo au kifungo. 3023:30 Mdo 20:3; 24:19; 25:16Nilipoarifiwa kuwa kulikuwa na shauri baya dhidi ya mtu huyu, nilimtuma kwako mara moja. Niliwaagiza washtaki wake pia waeleze mashtaka yao dhidi yake mbele yako.
31Hivyo askari, kwa kufuata maelekezo waliyopewa, wakamchukua Paulo wakati wa usiku na kumleta mpaka Antipatri. 3223:32 Mdo 21:34Kesho yake wakawaacha wale wapanda farasi waendelee na safari wakiwa na Paulo, wao wakarudi kwenye ngome ya askari. 3323:33 Mdo 8:40Askari walipofika Kaisaria, walimpa mtawala ile barua, na kumkabidhi Paulo kwake. 3423:34 Mdo 6:9; 21:39Mtawala alipokwisha kuisoma ile barua alimuuliza Paulo alikuwa mtu wa jimbo gani. Alipojua kuwa anatoka Kilikia, 3523:35 Mdo 24:19; 25:16; 24:27alisema, “Nitasikiliza shauri lako washtaki wako watakapofika hapa.” Kisha akaamuru Paulo awekwe chini ya ulinzi kwenye jumba la kifalme la Herode.