1 Now the apostles and the brothers in Judaea heard that the Gentiles also had received the word of God. 2 So when Peter came up to Jerusalem, the circumcision party fell foul of him. 3 "You went into the houses of the uncircumcised," they said, "and you ate with them!"
4 Then Peter proceeded to put the facts before them. 5 "I was in the town of Joppa at prayer," he said, "and in a trance I saw a vision ??a vessel coming down like a huge sheet lowered from heaven by the four corners. It came down to me, 6 and when I looked steadily at it, I noted the quadrupeds of the earth, the wild beasts, the creeping things and the wild birds. 7 Also I heard a voice saying to me, 'Rise, Peter, kill and eat.'
8 I said, 'No, no, my Lord; nothing common or unclean has ever passed my lips.' 9 But a voice answered me for the second time out of heaven, 'What God has cleansed, you must not regard as common.'
10 This happened three times, and then the whole thing was drawn back into heaven. 11 At that very moment three men reached the house where I was living, sent to me from Caesarea. 12 The Spirit told me to have no hesitation in accompanying them; these six brothers went with me as well, and we entered the man's house. 13 He related to us how he had seen the angel standing in his house and saying, 'Send to Joppa for Simon who is surnamed Peter; 14 he will tell you how you and all your household are to be saved.'
15 Now just as I began to speak, the holy Spirit fell upon them as upon us at the beginning; 16 and I remembered the saying of the Lord, that 'John baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with the holy Spirit.' 17 Well then, if God has given them exactly the same gift as he gave us when we believed in the Lord Jesus Christ, who was I ??how could I try to thwart God?"
18 On hearing this they desisted and glorified God, saying, "So God has actually allowed the Gentiles to repent and live!"
19 Now those who had been scattered by the trouble which arose over Stephen made their way as far as Phoenicia and Cyprus and Antioch, but they preached the word to none except Jews. 20 Some of them, however, were Cypriotes and Cyrenians, who on reaching Antioch told the Greeks also the gospel of the Lord Jesus; 21 the strong hand of the Lord was with them, and a large number believed and turned to the Lord. 22 The news of this reached the church in Jerusalem, and they despatched Barnabas to Antioch. 23 When he came and saw the grace of God he rejoiced, and encouraged them all to hold by the Lord with heartfelt purpose 24 (for he was a good man, full of the holy Spirit and faith). Considerable numbers of people were brought in for the Lord. 25 So Barnabas went off to Tarsus to look for Saul, 26 and on finding him he brought him to Antioch, where for a whole year they were guests of the church and taught considerable numbers. It was at Antioch too that the disciples were originally called "Christians."
27 During these days some prophets came down from Jerusalem to Antioch, 28 one of whom, named Agabus, showed by the Spirit that a severe famine was about to visit the whole world (the famine which occurred in the reign of Claudius). 29 So the disciples put aside money, as each of them was able to afford it, for a contribution to be sent to the brothers in Judaea. 30 This they carried out, sending their contribution to the presbyters by Barnabas and Saul.