Bible Study - Acts 23
CHAPTER 23 - describes a plot against the life of Paul, how it was laid, discovered, and defeated. The chapter starts with the description of how the council and the high priest, Ananias, treated Paul, trying their best to condemn him because they did not like his teachings. Forty men vow to set an ambush and kill Paul, but Paul's nephew overhears the plot and reports it to the commander. The commander orders a considerable detachment of the Roman forces to get ready to go to Caesarea with all expediency (political advantage) and to bring Paul there to protect him. Paul appears before the Sanhedrin, where he hears their accusations and presents his defense, and the commander realizes there is no charge against Paul that will stick. The chapter ends with Paul being transferred to Caesarea, where he will appear before the governor.
Bible Study - Acts 22
CHAPTER 22 tells the story of Paul's incarceration by the Roman government. Paul gives a defense as to why he traveled with a Gentile from Ephesus, reminding the Jews of his strict education by the Pharisee rabbi Gamaliel and how violently he had, at first, persecuted Christians. He then recounts his conversion, as narrated in Acts 9:1–19. The Jewish mob that had tried to kill Paul earlier listened intently to his whole sermon until he mentioned Gentiles, which caused them to erupt into rage. The Roman tribune realizes neither Paul's speech nor the crowd's renewed anger explain anything, so he falls back on the traditional Roman way to uncover information: beating people until they talk. The soldiers tie Paul up but before the centurion raises the flagellum, Paul points out that, as a Roman citizen, he cannot be flogged until...