Paul Before King Agrippa
- INTRODUCTION: Scripture
- THE LAST ADDRESS OF THE APOSTLE PAUL
WAS IN THE PRESENCE OF FELIX AND DRUSILLA IN ACTS
- Felixs wickedness as governor
had caused the Jews to brings complaints to be brought
before Nero, who had recalled Felix.
- Porcius Festus was appointed to
be the governor in A. D. 60
- Festus was a tremendous improvement
to the former governor Felix, as he was honest and
straightforward in his dealings with the Jews.
- PORCIUS FESTUS GOES TO JERUSALEM
AFTER COMING TO CAESAREA
- This visit was made only three
days after coming to Caesarea. [Acts
- Upon his arrival in Jerusalem "The
high priest and the chief of the Jews informed him
against Paul, and besought him" [Acts
- The Jews were beseeching Festus
to have Paul brought to Jerusalem from Caesarea.
- If this could be done, the Jews
would be "laying in wait in the way to kill
- This plot the Jews had formed
to rid them of Paul.
- The plot was similar to the
one they had tried to carry out two years before
- Festus says Paul will stay in Caesarea
when he is as prisoner as he would shortly be returning
to Caesarea. [Acts
25:4-5]. And says to the Jews:
- Those that "
you are able, go down with me," (Acts
- There "
this man, if there be any wickedness in him"
- Festus returns to Caesarea after
a period of about ten days and immediately following
his return he sits on the "judgment seat"
- He "commands Paul to be brought"
- The Jews that came down from Jerusalem
laid many and grievous complaints
against Paul, which they could not prove"
- PAULS CONFRONTATION BEFORE
FESTUS AND THE JEWS:
- The Jews have made their charges
against Paul. Acts
- Paul says to Festus: "Neither
against the law of the Jews, neither against the temple, nor
yet against Caesar , have I offended anything at all"
- Festus wants to show kindness to
This just exactly what Felix wanted to do in Acts
- That is do them a favor, or a
pleasure: responds to Paul brief statement in verse
asks Paul, "Wilt thou go up to Jerusalem,
and there be judged of these things before
me?" = Acts
- The answer to this question is
the address that Paul makes before Festus: Pauls
appeal to Caesar.
25:10-11 = "Then said Paul, I stand
at Caesar's judgment seat, where I ought to be
judged: to the Jews have I done no wrong, as thou
very well knowest. For if I be an offender, or
have committed any thing worthy of death, I refuse
not to die: but if there be none of these things
whereof these accuse me, no man may deliver me unto
them. I appeal unto Caesar."
- Festus confers with the council
and says: "Hast thou appealed unto Caesar?
Unto Caesar shalt thou go." = Acts
- KING AGRIPPA AND BERNICE COME TO
- They had come to salute Festus
on his appointment as governor (Acts
- After several days Festus tells
Agrippa about Paul that Felix had left in bonds (Acts
telling Agrippa of what he knew of the situation.
- He had been confronted with the
Jews about the man on his recent trip to Jerusalem.
- The Jews wanted a judgment rendered
against him (Acts
- Festus said it was against Roman
law "to deliver any man to die, before
which is accused have the accusers face to face,
and have license to answer for himself concerning
the crime laid against him." = Acts
- The accusers came and I "commanded
the man to be brought forth" (Acts
- The accusers:
- "Brought none accusations
of such things as I supposed" (Acts
- They had "questions
against him of their own superstition, and of
Jesus, which was dead, whom Paul affirmed to be
- Festus in doubt of these questions
asked Paul: "Whether he would go to
Jerusalem, and there be just of these matters."
- When he "appealed
to be reserved unto the hearing of Augusts, I
commanded him to be kept till I might send him
to Caesar" (Acts
- Agrippa asks Festus to hear Paul
himself and Festus says this will be done on the morrow.
- THE MEETING:
- Agrippa and Bernice are present
with great pomp.
- The chief captains of the army
- The principal men of the city are
- Festus addresses this noble assembly:
25:24-27 = "And Festus said,
King Agrippa, and all men which are here
present with us, ye see this man, about whom all
the multitude of the Jews have dealt with me,
both at Jerusalem, and also here, crying that he
ought not to live any longer. But when I found
that he had committed nothing worthy of death, and
that he himself hath appealed to Augustus, I have
determined to send him. Of whom I have no certain
thing to write unto my lord. Wherefore I have
brought him forth before you, and specially before
thee, O king Agrippa, that, after examination had,
I might have somewhat to write. For it seemeth to me
unreasonable to send a prisoner, and not withal
to signify the crimes laid against him."
- King Agrippa said to Paul, "Thou
art permitted to speak for thyself" =Acts
- PAULS BEFORE KING AGRIPPA AND
- The occasion Paul faces is one
of mixed contrasts:
- There is the glitter of the king
and the powerful governor and a simple prisoner.
- There is the splendor of the
earthly position and dignity of character.
- There are the petty considerations
of these unscrupulous hearers, and the sincere
convictions of this great man of God.
- Paul seizes the opportunity of
defense to preach Christ, as if completely oblivious
of his own
state and enters a plea for the risen Christ.
- PAULS ADDRESS: [ACTS
- Paul is thankful for the opportunity
to speak before one of knowledge of Jewish customs
26:1-3 = "Then Agrippa said unto
Paul, Thou art permitted to speak for thyself. Then
Paul stretched forth the hand, and answered for himself:
think myself happy, king Agrippa, because I shall
answer for myself this day before thee touching all
the things whereof I am accused of the Jews: especially
because I know thee to be expert in all customs
and questions which are among the Jews: wherefore
I beseech thee to hear me patiently."
This statement is found among the sayings of Chrysostom:
"It is the mark of a clear
conscience, not to shrink from a judge, who has an
accurate knowledge of the circumstances;
but even to rejoice and to call himself happy."
- Paul speaks of his life before
his conversion: [Acts
- There was no conflict to be found
here to trouble the Jews as those that knew him
26:4-5 = "My manner of life from
my youth, which was at the first among mine
own nation at Jerusalem, know all the Jews; Which
knew me from the beginning, if they would testify,
that after the most straitest sect of our religion
I lived a Pharisee."
- Paul had been true to the faith
of their fathers, yet bitterness and persecution
26:6-8 = "And now I stand and
am judged for the hope of the promise made of
God unto our fathers: Unto which promise our twelve
tribes, instantly serving God day and night, hope
to come. For which hope's sake, king Agrippa, I
am accused of the Jews. Why should it be thought
a thing incredible with you, that God should raise
- Pauls attitude during this
time toward Christ.
26:9-11 = "I verily thought with
myself, that I ought to do many things contrary to
the name of Jesus of Nazareth. Which thing I also
did in Jerusalem: and many of the saints did
I shut up in prison, having received authority from
the chief priests; and when they were put to
death, I gave my voice against them. And I punished
them oft in every synagogue, and compelled them
to blaspheme; and being exceedingly mad against them,
I persecuted them even unto strange cities."
It is possible that as Paul spoke regarding this,
that the king was wondering why he had changed
his attitude, or mind, toward Christ. Paul next words
seek to explain this change that came into his
- Pauls conversion: [Acts
- The heavenly vision:
26:12-15 = "Whereupon as I went
to Damascus with authority and
commission from the chief priests, At midday, O
king, I saw in the way a light from heaven,
above the brightness of the sun, shining round about
me and them which journeyed with me. And when we
were all fallen to the earth, I heard a voice speaking
unto me, and saying in the Hebrew tongue, Saul,
Saul, why persecutest thou me? it is hard for thee
to kick against the pricks. And I said, Who
art thou, Lord? And he said, I am Jesus whom thou
- The heavenly charge:
26:16-18 = "But rise, and stand
upon thy feet: for I have appeared unto thee for this
purpose, to make thee a minister and a witness both
of these things which thou hast seen, and of
those things in the which I will appear unto thee;
Delivering thee from the people, and from the
Gentiles, unto whom now I send thee, To open their eyes,
and to turn them from darkness to light, and from
the power of Satan unto God, that they may receive
forgiveness of sins, and inheritance among them which
are sanctified by faith that is in me."
- Pauls response to the heavenly
26:19-23 = "Whereupon, O king Agrippa,
I was not disobedient unto the heavenly vision: But
shewed first unto them of Damascus, and at Jerusalem,
and throughout all the coasts of Judaea, and
then to the Gentiles, that they should repent and
turn to God, and do works meet for repentance.
For these causes the Jews caught me in the temple,
and went about to kill me. Having therefore obtained
help of God, I continue unto this day, witnessing
both to small and great, saying none other things
than those which the prophets and Moses did say should
come: That Christ should suffer, and that he
should be the first that should rise from the dead,
and should shew light unto the people, and to
- Paul speaking to King Agrippa,
says that in obedience to the vision he went everywhere
preaching unto the Jews and gentiles.
26:19-20 = "Whereupon, O king
Agrippa, I was not disobedient unto the
heavenly vision: But shewed first unto them of Damascus,
and at Jerusalem, and throughout all the coasts
of Judaea, and then to the Gentiles, that they should
repent and turn to God, and do works meet for repentance".
- Paul says that as a result to
the vision and carrying out Gods purpose he
Agrippa in bonds and a prisoner.
26:21-23 = "For these causes
the Jews caught me in the temple, and
went about to kill me. Having therefore obtained
help of God, I continue unto this day, witnessing
both to small and great, saying none other things
than those which the prophets and Moses did say
should come: That Christ should suffer, and
that he should be the first that should rise from
the dead, and should shew light unto the people,
and to the Gentiles."
- CONTRASTING COMMENTS:
26:24 = "And as he thus spake
for himself, Festus said with a loud voice, Paul,
thou art beside thyself; much learning doth make
- To which Paul replies to Festus:
26:25-26 = " But he said, I am
not mad, most noble Festus; but speak forth the
words of truth and soberness. For the king knoweth
of these things, before whom also I speak freely:
for I am persuaded that none of these things are hidden
from him; for this thing was not done in a corner."
- Paul then speaks directly to
Agrippa: "King Agrippa, believest thou
the prophets? I know that thou believest."
- Agrippa :
26:28 = "Then Agrippa said unto
Paul, Almost thou persuadest me to be a Christian."
- To which Paul replies: "I
would to God, that not only thou, but also all that
hear me this day, were both almost, and altogether
such as I am, except these bonds."
- Agrippa takes the governor, Bernice
and those with him aside:
26:30-31 = "And when he had
thus spoken, the king rose up, and the
governor, and Bernice, and they that sat with
them: And when they were gone aside, they talked
- THE VERDICT OF KING AGRIPPA: [Acts
This man doeth
nothing worthy of death or of bonds."
- "Then said Agrippa unto
Festus, This man might have been set at liberty, if
he had not appealed unto Caesar."
- WHAT IS YOUR VERDICT IN REGARDS TO
THE PREACHING AND ACTIONS OF PAUL?
- WOULD YOU HAVE YOUR DECISION REST
IN THE HANDS OF MEN OR GOD?
- YOU WILL STAND BEFORE THE LORD
HOW DO YOU PLEAD?
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