1. Now three days after Festus arrived in the province, he went to Jerusalem from Caesarea.
2. Then the high priest and the chief Jews presented before him the charges against Paul; and they besought him,
3. Asking a favor against Paul, that he would have him sent to Jerusalem, because they were preparing an ambush to kill him on the way.
4. Then Festus replied that Paul would be kept in Caesarea, and that he himself was about to depart shortly.
5. He said, “Therefore, let those who are in power among you go down also; and if anything wicked is in this man, let them accuse him there.”
6. Now after spending more than ten days among them, he went down to Caesarea; and the next day he sat on the judgment seat and commanded that Paul be brought.
7. And when he came in, the Jews who had come down from Jerusalem stood all around, presenting numerous and weighty charges against Paul, which they were not able to prove.
8. Then he answered in his own defense, “Neither against the law of the Jews, nor against the temple, nor against Caesar did I transgress in anything.”
9. But Festus, desiring to obtain favor with the Jews, asked Paul and said, “Are you willing to go up to Jerusalem to be judged before me there concerning these things?”
10. But Paul said, “I stand before the judgment seat of Caesar, where I have the right to be judged. I did nothing wrong to the Jews as you very well know.
11. For on the one hand, if I am a wrongdoer and have done anything worthy of death, I do not object to dying; but if there is no truth in their accusations against me, no one can deliver me over to them. I appeal to Caesar.”
12. And after conferring with the council, Festus answered, “You have appealed to Caesar; to Caesar you shall go.”
13. Now when certain days had passed, King Agrippa and Bernice came down to Caesarea to greet Festus.
14. And after they had been there many days, Festus set before the king the things relating to Paul, saying, “There is a certain man, left here by Felix as a prisoner,
15. Against whom, when I was in Jerusalem, the chief priests and the elders of the Jews presented allegations, seeking judgment against him;
16. To whom I answered that it is not the custom of the Romans to give up any man to die before he has been accused, but to have the opportunity to meet his accusers face to face, and to defend himself concerning the accusation.
17. Then they came together; and without delay, the next day I sat on the judgment seat and commanded the man to be brought.
18. When the accusers stood up to accuse, they did not bring any accusation of the kind that I supposed they would bring against him.
19. But they had certain questions against him concerning their own religious system, and concerning a certain Jesus, Who is dead, but Whom Paul affirmed to be alive;
20. And being in doubt about the investigation of this matter, I asked Paul if he would be willing to go to Jerusalem to be judged there concerning these things.
21. But when Paul himself appealed that he be reserved for a hearing before Augustus, I commanded him to be kept until I could send him to Caesar.”
22. And Agrippa said to Festus, “I also have been desiring to hear the man myself.” And he said, “Tomorrow you shall hear him.”
23. So then, Agrippa and Bernice came in the next day with great pomp, and entered into the hall of audience with the chief captains and the eminent men of the city; and when Festus gave the command, Paul was brought in.
24. And Festus said, “King Agrippa, and all the men who are present with us, this is the one concerning whom the entire multitude of Jews pleaded with me, both in Jerusalem and here, crying out that he ought not to live any longer.
25. But when I perceived that he had done nothing worthy of death, and that he himself had also appealed to Augustus, I determined to send him.
26. However, I do not have anything certain to write to my lord concerning him. I have therefore, brought him before you, and especially before you, King Agrippa, so that after the examination has been completed, I may have something to write;
27. For it seems irrational to me to send a prisoner, and not to declare the charges against him.”
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