and Paul looking earnestly at the sanhedrim, said, "Brethren, I have lived in all good conscience before God even to this day:" but the high priest Ananias ordered those that stood next him, to smite him on the mouth. Then said Paul to him, "God will smite thee, thou whited wall: dost thou sit to judge me according to the law, and contrary to the law commandest me to be smitten?" read more.
But they that stood by said, Revilest thou God's high-priest? And Paul said, I was not aware, brethren, that it was the high-priest: for it is written, Thou shalt not speak evil of the ruler of thy people. But Paul, knowing that the one part were sadducees, and the other pharisees, cried out in the sanhedrim, "Brethren, I am a pharisee, the son of a pharisee: for the hope of a resurrection of the dead I am now prosecuted."
Then Paul, when the governor permitted him to speak, answered in this manner, "As I know that thou hast been many years a judge to this nation, I do the more chearfully answer for myself: because thou mayst know, that there are not more than twelve days since I went up to worship at Jerusalem: and they neither found me disputing with any one in the temple, or making sedition among the people, neither in the synagogues, nor in the city: read more.
nor can they prove the things of which they now accuse me. But this I confess unto thee, that after the way, which they call heresy, so do I worship the God of my fathers, believing all things which are written in the law, and the prophets: having hope in God, (which they themselves also expect) that there shall be a resurrection of the dead, both of the just and unjust. And on this account do I exercise myself, to have always a conscience void of offence both towards God and towards men. Now after several years I came to bring alms to my nation, and offerings. Upon which some Jews from Asia found me purified in the temple, neither with multitude nor with tumult: who ought to have been here before thee, and make good their charge, if they had any thing against me. Or let these themselves say, if they found any crime in me, when I stood before the sanhedrim; unless for this one expression, that I cried out when I stood among them, For the resurrection of the dead I am called in question by you this day."
Then Agrippa said unto Paul, Thou art permitted to speak for thyself. Then Paul stretching forth his hand, thus made his defence, "O king Agrippa, I think myself happy, that I am this day to make my defence before thee, concerning all the things which I am accused of by the Jews: especially as thou art acquainted with all the customs and questions which are among the Jews; wherefore I intreat thee to hear me patiently. read more.
My manner of life then from my youth, as it has been from the beginning among my own nation at Jerusalem, all the Jews are acquainted with, knowing me before, (if they would testify it,) that according to the strictest sect of our religion I lived a pharisee. And now I stand arraigned for the hope of the promise which was made by God to our fathers: to which promise our twelve tribes, worshipping continually night and day, hope to attain: concerning which hope, O king Agrippa, I am accused by the Jews. What! is it judged incredible by you, that God should raise the dead? I indeed once thought with myself, that I ought to do many things contrary to the name of Jesus the Nazarene: which I also did in Jerusalem; and I shut up many of the saints in prison, having received authority for it from the chief priests; and when they were put to death I gave my voice against them. And often punishing them in all the synagogues, I compelled them to blaspheme, and being excessively enraged against them, I persecuted them even to foreign cities. On which accounts as I was going to Damascus with authority and commission from the chief priests---at mid-day, O king, as I was on the way thither I saw a light from heaven exceeding the splendor of the sun, shining round about me and those that were going with me. And when we were all fallen down to the earth, I heard a voice speaking to me, and saying in the Hebrew tongue, Saul, Saul, why dost thou persecute me? It is hard for thee to kick against the goads. And I said, Who art thou, Lord? And He said, I am Jesus, whom thou persecutest. But rise, and stand on thy feet: for to this end have I appeared unto thee, to appoint thee a minister and a witness both of the things which thou hast seen, and of those for which I shall hereafter appear unto thee: delivering thee from the people and from the Gentiles, to whom I now 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 an inheritance among them that are sanctified by faith in me. Wherefore, O king Agrippa, I was not disobedient to the heavenly vision: but declared first to those in Damascus and Jerusalem, and through all the country of Judea, and then to the Gentiles, that they should repent, and turn unto God, performing works suitable to repentance. For these things the Jews seized me in the temple, and attempted to kill me. But having obtained help of God, I continue until this day, testifying both to small and great, and saying nothing but what the prophets and Moses declared should come to pass; even that the Messiah should suffer, and being the first of the resurrection from the dead should bring light to the people and to the Gentiles."
And Jesus answering said unto them, Do ye not therefore err, because ye know not the scriptures, nor the power of God?
What! is it judged incredible by you, that God should raise the dead?