Acts 26:1–11 (ESV)
Paul’s Defense Before Agrippa
26 So Agrippa said to Paul, “You have permission to speak for yourself.” Then Paul stretched out his hand and made his defense:
2 “I consider myself fortunate that it is before you, King Agrippa, I am going to make my defense today against all the accusations of the Jews, 3 especially
because you are familiar with all the customs and controversies of the Jews. Therefore I beg you to listen to me patiently.
manner of life from my youth, spent from the beginning among my own nation and in Jerusalem, is known by all the Jews. 5 They have known for a long time, if they are willing to testify, that according to the strictest party
of our religion I have lived as a Pharisee. 6 And now I stand here on trial because of my hope in the promise made by God to our fathers, 7 to which our twelve tribes hope to attain, as they
earnestly worship night and day. And for this hope I am accused by Jews, O king! 8 Why is it thought incredible by any of you that God raises the dead?
9 “I myself was convinced that I ought to do many things in opposing the name of Jesus of Nazareth. 10 And I did so in Jerusalem. I not only locked up many of
the saints in prison after receiving authority from the chief priests, but when they were put to death I cast my vote against them. 11 And I punished them often in all the synagogues and tried to make them blaspheme, and in
raging fury against them I persecuted them even to foreign cities.
Paul makes his defense before King Agrippa. He describes his zealous opposition to Jesus and the Gospel message.
Because we are born in sin (Ps 51:5), we all have an ungodly past, even if we have never persecuted Christians the way Paul did. Be assured that Christ forgives and delivers us, just as He did Paul.
I pray: Jesus, thank You for bearing my sin. Let me see others with the love You have for them, and empower me to share the Gospel of Your love with them. Amen.
Edward A. Engelbrecht, The Lutheran Study Bible (St. Louis, MO: Concordia
Publishing House, 2009), 1891.