|52 Week Bible Reading Plan|
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52 Week Bible Reading Plan
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- When we had parted from them and had set sail, we ran a straight course to Cos and the next day to Rhodes and from there to Patara;
- and having found a ship crossing over to Phoenicia, we went aboard and set sail.
- When we came in sight of Cyprus, leaving it on the left, we kept sailing to Syria and landed at Tyre; for there the ship was to unload its cargo.
- After looking up the disciples, we stayed there seven days; and they kept telling Paul through the Spirit not to set foot in Jerusalem.
- When our days there were ended, we left and started on our journey, while they all, with wives and children, escorted us until we were out of the city. After kneeling down on the beach and praying, we said farewell to one another.
- Then we went on board the ship, and they returned home again.
- When we had finished the voyage from Tyre, we arrived at Ptolemais, and after greeting the brethren, we stayed with them for a day.
- On the next day we left and came to Caesarea, and entering the house of Philip the evangelist, who was one of the seven, we stayed with him.
- Now this man had four virgin daughters who were prophetesses.
- As we were staying there for some days, a prophet named Agabus came down from Judea.
- And coming to us, he took Paul's belt and bound his own feet and hands, and said, "This is what the Holy Spirit says: "In this way the Jews at Jerusalem will bind the man who owns this belt and deliver him into the hands of the Gentiles.'
- When we had heard this, we as well as the local residents began begging him not to go up to Jerusalem.
- Then Paul answered, "What are you doing, weeping and breaking my heart? For I am ready not only to be bound, but even to die at Jerusalem for the name of the Lord Jesus.'
- And since he would not be persuaded, we fell silent, remarking, " The will of the Lord be done!'
- After these days we got ready and started on our way up to Jerusalem.
- Some of the disciples from Caesarea also came with us, taking us to Mnason of Cyprus, a disciple of long standing with whom we were to lodge.
- After we arrived in Jerusalem, the brethren received us gladly.
- And the following day Paul went in with us to James, and all the elders were present.
- After he had greeted them, he began to relate one by one the things which God had done among the Gentiles through his ministry.
- And when they heard it they began glorifying God; and they said to him, "You see, brother, how many thousands there are among the Jews of those who have believed, and they are all zealous for the Law;
- and they have been told about you, that you are teaching all the Jews who are among the Gentiles to forsake Moses, telling them not to circumcise their children nor to walk according to the customs.
- "What, then, is to be done? They will certainly hear that you have come.
- "Therefore do this that we tell you. We have four men who are under a vow;
- take them and purify yourself along with them, and pay their expenses so that they may shave their heads; and all will know that there is nothing to the things which they have been told about you, but that you yourself also walk orderly, keeping the Law.
- "But concerning the Gentiles who have believed, we wrote, having decided that they should abstain from meat sacrificed to idols and from blood and from what is strangled and from fornication.'
- Then Paul took the men, and the next day, purifying himself along with them, went into the temple giving notice of the completion of the days of purification, until the sacrifice was offered for each one of them.
- When the seven days were almost over, the Jews from Asia, upon seeing him in the temple, began to stir up all the crowd and laid hands on him,
- crying out, "Men of Israel, come to our aid! This is the man who preaches to all men everywhere against our people and the Law and this place; and besides he has even brought Greeks into the temple and has defiled this holy place.'
- For they had previously seen Trophimus the Ephesian in the city with him, and they supposed that Paul had brought him into the temple.
- Then all the city was provoked, and the people rushed together, and taking hold of Paul they dragged him out of the temple, and immediately the doors were shut.
- While they were seeking to kill him, a report came up to the commander of the Roman cohort that all Jerusalem was in confusion.
- At once he took along some soldiers and centurions and ran down to them; and when they saw the commander and the soldiers, they stopped beating Paul.
- Then the commander came up and took hold of him, and ordered him to be bound with two chains; and he began asking who he was and what he had done.
- But among the crowd some were shouting one thing and some another, and when he could not find out the facts because of the uproar, he ordered him to be brought into the barracks.
- When he got to the stairs, he was carried by the soldiers because of the violence of the mob;
- for the multitude of the people kept following them, shouting, " Away with him!'
- As Paul was about to be brought into the barracks, he said to the commander, "May I say something to you?' And he said, "Do you know Greek?
- "Then you are not the Egyptian who some time ago stirred up a revolt and led the four thousand men of the Assassins out into the wilderness?'
- But Paul said, " I am a Jew of Tarsus in Cilicia, a citizen of no insignificant city; and I beg you, allow me to speak to the people.'
- When he had given him permission, Paul, standing on the stairs, motioned to the people with his hand; and when there was a great hush, he spoke to them in the Hebrew dialect, saying, 22
Scripture taken from the New American Standard Bible®, Copyright © The Lockman Foundation 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995. Used by permission.
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- "Brethren and fathers, hear my defense which I now offer to you.'
- And when they heard that he was addressing them in the Hebrew dialect, they became even more quiet; and he said,
- " I am a Jew, born in Tarsus of Cilicia, but brought up in this city, educated under Gamaliel, strictly according to the law of our fathers, being zealous for God just as you all are today.
- " I persecuted this Way to the death, binding and putting both men and women into prisons,
- as also the high priest and all the Council of the elders can testify. From them I also received letters to the brethren, and started off for Damascus in order to bring even those who were there to Jerusalem as prisoners to be punished.
- " But it happened that as I was on my way, approaching Damascus about noontime, a very bright light suddenly flashed from heaven all around me,
- and I fell to the ground and heard a voice saying to me, "Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting Me?'
- "And I answered, "Who are You, Lord?' And He said to me, "I am Jesus the Nazarene, whom you are persecuting.'
- "And those who were with me saw the light, to be sure, but did not understand the voice of the One who was speaking to me.
- "And I said, " What shall I do, Lord?' And the Lord said to me, "Get up and go on into Damascus, and there you will be told of all that has been appointed for you to do.'
- "But since I could not see because of the brightness of that light, I was led by the hand by those who were with me and came into Damascus.
- "A certain Ananias, a man who was devout by the standard of the Law, and well spoken of by all the Jews who lived there,
- came to me, and standing near said to me, " Brother Saul, receive your sight!' And at that very time I looked up at him.
- "And he said, " The God of our fathers has appointed you to know His will and to see the Righteous One and to hear an utterance from His mouth.
- "For you will be a witness for Him to all men of what you have seen and heard.
- "Now why do you delay? Get up and be baptized, and wash away your sins, calling on His name.'
- "It happened when I returned to Jerusalem and was praying in the temple, that I fell into a trance,
- and I saw Him saying to me, " Make haste, and get out of Jerusalem quickly, because they will not accept your testimony about Me.'
- "And I said, "Lord, they themselves understand that in one synagogue after another I used to imprison and beat those who believed in You.
- "And when the blood of Your witness Stephen was being shed, I also was standing by approving, and watching out for the coats of those who were slaying him.'
- "And He said to me, "Go! For I will send you far away to the Gentiles.'
- They listened to him up to this statement, and then they raised their voices and said, " Away with such a fellow from the earth, for he should not be allowed to live!'
- And as they were crying out and throwing off their cloaks and tossing dust into the air,
- the commander ordered him to be brought into the barracks, stating that he should be examined by scourging so that he might find out the reason why they were shouting against him that way.
- But when they stretched him out with thongs, Paul said to the centurion who was standing by, "Is it lawful for you to scourge a man who is a Roman and uncondemned?'
- When the centurion heard this, he went to the commander and told him, saying, "What are you about to do? For this man is a Roman.'
- The commander came and said to him, "Tell me, are you a Roman?' And he said, "Yes.'
- The commander answered, "I acquired this citizenship with a large sum of money.' And Paul said, "But I was actually born a citizen.'
- Therefore those who were about to examine him immediately let go of him; and the commander also was afraid when he found out that he was a Roman, and because he had put him in chains.
- But on the next day, wishing to know for certain why he had been accused by the Jews, he released him and ordered the chief priests and all the Council to assemble, and brought Paul down and set him before them. 23
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