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22:1 Men, brethren, and fathers, hear ye my defence which I make now unto you.
22:2 (And when they heard that he spake in the Hebrew tongue to them, they kept the more silence: and he saith,)
22:3 I am verily a man which am a Jew, born in Tarsus, a city in Cilicia, yet brought up in this city at the feet of Gamaliel, and taught according to the perfect manner of the law of the fathers, and was zealous toward God, as ye all are this day.
22:4 And I persecuted this way unto the death, binding and delivering into prisons both men and women.
22:5 As also the high priest doth bear me witness, and all the estate of the elders: from whom also I received letters unto the brethren, and went to Damascus, to bring them which were there bound unto Jerusalem, for to be punished.
22:6 And it came to pass, that, as I made my journey, and was come nigh unto Damascus about noon, suddenly there shone from heaven a great light round about me.
22:7 And I fell unto the ground, and heard a voice saying unto me, Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me?
22:8 And I answered, Who art thou, Lord? And he said unto me, I am Jesus of Nazareth, whom thou persecutest.
22:9 And they that were with me saw indeed the light, and were afraid; but they heard not the voice of him that spake to me.
22:10 And I said, What shall I do, LORD? And the Lord said unto me, Arise, and go into Damascus; and there it shall be told thee of all things which are appointed for thee to do.
22:11 And when I could not see for the glory of that light, being led by the hand of them that were with me, I came into Damascus.
22:12 And one Ananias, a devout man according to the law, having a good report of all the Jews which dwelt there,
22:13 Came unto me, and stood, and said unto me, Brother Saul, receive thy sight. And the same hour I looked up upon him.
22:14 And he said, The God of our fathers hath chosen thee, that thou shouldest know his will, and see that Just One, and shouldest hear the voice of his mouth.
22:15 For thou shalt be his witness unto all men of what thou hast seen and heard.
22:16 And now why tarriest thou? arise, and be baptized, and wash away thy sins, calling on the name of the Lord.
22:17 And it came to pass, that, when I was come again to Jerusalem, even while I prayed in the temple, I was in a trance;
22:18 And saw him saying unto me, Make haste, and get thee quickly out of Jerusalem: for they will not receive thy testimony concerning me.
22:19 And I said, Lord, they know that I imprisoned and beat in every synagogue them that believed on thee:
22:20 And when the blood of thy martyr Stephen was shed, I also was standing by, and consenting unto his death, and kept the raiment of them that slew him.
22:21 And he said unto me, Depart: for I will send thee far hence unto the Gentiles.
22:22 And they gave him audience unto this word, and then lifted up their voices, and said, Away with such a fellow from the earth: for it is not fit that he should live.
22:23 And as they cried out, and cast off their clothes, and threw dust into the air,
22:24 The chief captain commanded him to be brought into the castle, and bade that he should be examined by scourging; that he might know wherefore they cried so against him.
22:25 And as they bound him with thongs, Paul said unto the centurion that stood by, Is it lawful for you to scourge a man that is a Roman, and uncondemned?
22:26 When the centurion heard that, he went and told the chief captain, saying, Take heed what thou doest: for this man is a Roman.
22:27 Then the chief captain came, and said unto him, Tell me, art thou a Roman? He said, Yea.
22:28 And the chief captain answered, With a great sum obtained I this freedom. And Paul said, But I was free born.
22:29 Then straightway they departed from him which should have examined him: and the chief captain also was afraid, after he knew that he was a Roman, and because he had bound him.
22:30 On the morrow, because he would have known the certainty wherefore he was accused of the Jews, he loosed him from his bands, and commanded the chief priests and all their council to appear, and brought Paul down, and set him before them.

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Everything King James Bible:Acts

Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary on the Whole Bible
back to: Acts
Book: Acts
Chapter: 22

Overview:
Paul's account of his Conversion. (1-11) Paul directed to
preach to the Gentiles. (12-21) The rage of the Jews, Paul pleads
that he is a Roman citizen. (22-30)

1-11 The Apostle addressed the enraged multitude, in the
customary style of respect and good-will. Paul relates the
history of his early Life very particularly; he notices that his
Conversion was wholly the act of God. Condemned sinners are
struck Blind By the power of Darkness, and it is a lasting
blindness, like that of the unbelieving Jews. Convinced sinners
are struck Blind as Paul was, not By Darkness, but By Light.
They are for a time brought to be at a loss within themselves,
but it is in order to their being enlightened. A simple relation
of the Lord's dealings with us, in bringing us, from opposing,
to profess and promote his Gospel, when delivered in a right
Spirit and manner, will sometimes make more impression that
laboured speeches, even though it amounts not to the full proof
of the Truth, such as was shown in the change wrought in the
Apostle.

12-21 The Apostle goes On to relate how he was confirmed in the
change he had made. The Lord having Chosen the sinner, that he
should know his will, he is humbled, enlightened, and brought to
the knowledge of Christ and his blessed Gospel. Christ is here
called that Just One; for he is Jesus Christ the righteous.
Those whom God has Chosen to know his will, must look to Jesus,
for By him God has made known his good-will to us. The great
Gospel privilege, sealed to us By Baptism, is the Pardon of
sins. Be baptized, and wash away thy sins; that is, receive the
comfort of the Pardon of thy sins in and through Jesus Christ,
and lay Hold On his Righteousness for that purpose; and receive
power against Sin, for the mortifying of thy corruptions. Be
baptized, and Rest not in the sign, but make sure of the thing
signified, the putting away of the filth of Sin. The great
Gospel duty, to which By our Baptism we are bound, is, to seek
for the Pardon of our sins in Christ's name, and in dependence
On him and his Righteousness. God appoints his labourers their
Day and their place, and it is fit they should follow his
appointment, though it may Cross their own will. Providence
contrives better for us than we do for ourselves; we must refer
ourselves to God's guidance. If Christ send any one, his Spirit
shall go along with him, and give him to see the Fruit of his
labours. But nothing can reconcile Man's Heart to the Gospel,
except the special Grace of God.

22-30 The Jews listened to Paul's account of his Conversion,
but the mention of his being sent to the Gentiles, was So
contrary to all their national prejudices, that they would hear
No more. Their frantic conduct astonished the Roman officer, who
supposed that Paul must have committed some great crime. Paul
pleaded his privilege as a Roman citizen, By which he was
exempted from all trials and punishments which might force him
to confess himself guilty. The manner of his speaking plainly
shows what holy security and serenity of mind he enjoyed. As
Paul was a Jew, in low circumstances, the Roman officer
questioned how he obtained So valuable a distinction; but the
Apostle told him he was free born. Let us value that Freedom to
which all the children of God are born; which No sum of Money,
however large, can purchase for those who remain unregenerate.
This at once Put a stop to his trouble. Thus many are kept from
evil practices By the fear of Man, who would not be held back
from them By the fear of God. The Apostle asks, simply, Is it
lawful? He knew that the God whom he served would support him
under all sufferings for his name's sake. But if it were not
lawful, the Apostle's religion directed him, if possible, to
avoid it. He never shrunk from a Cross which his Divine Master
laid upon his onward Road; and he never stepped aside out of that
Road to take one up.

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