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Acts chapter 16

1
Then he went on to Derbe and Lystra, where there was a disciple named Timothy, the son of a believing Jewish woman, but his father was a Greek.
2
The brothers at Lystra and Iconium spoke highly of him.
3
Paul wanted Timothy to go with him, so he took him and circumcised him because of the Jews who were in those places, since they all knew that his father was a Greek.
4
As they traveled through the towns, they delivered to them the decisions reached by the apostles and elders at Jerusalem.
5
So the churches were strengthened in the faith and were increased in number daily.
6
They went through the region of Phrygia and Galatia and were prevented by the Holy Spirit from speaking the message in the province of Asia.
7
When they came to Mysia, they tried to go into Bithynia, but the Spirit of Jesus did not allow them.
8
So, bypassing Mysia, they came down to Troas.
9
During the night a vision appeared to Paul: a Macedonian man was standing and pleading with him, "Cross over to Macedonia and help us!"
10
After he had seen the vision, we immediately made efforts to set out for Macedonia, concluding that God had called us to evangelize them.
11
Then, setting sail from Troas, we ran a straight course to Samothrace, the next day to Neapolis,
12
and from there to Philippi, a Roman colony, which is a leading city of that district of Macedonia. We stayed in that city for a number of days.
13
On the Sabbath day we went outside the city gate by the river, where we thought there was a place of prayer. We sat down and spoke to the women gathered there.
14
A woman named Lydia, a dealer in purple cloth from the city of Thyatira, who worshiped God, was listening. The Lord opened her heart to pay attention to what was spoken by Paul.
15
After she and her household were baptized, she urged us, "If you consider me a believer in the Lord, come and stay at my house." And she persuaded us.
16
Once, as we were on our way to prayer, a slave girl met us who had a spirit of prediction and made a large profit for her owners by fortune-telling.
17
As she followed Paul and us she cried out, "These men are the slaves of the Most High God, who are proclaiming to you the way of salvation."
18
And she did this for many days. But Paul was greatly aggravated, and turning to the spirit, said, "I command you in the name of Jesus Christ to come out of her!" And it came out right away.
19
When her owners saw that their hope of profit was gone, they seized Paul and Silas and dragged them into the marketplace to the authorities.
20
And bringing them before the chief magistrates, they said, "These men are seriously disturbing our city. They are Jews,
21
and are promoting customs that are not legal for us as Romans to adopt or practice."
22
Then the mob joined in the attack against them, and the chief magistrates stripped off their clothes and ordered them to be beaten with rods.
23
After they had inflicted many blows on them, they threw them in jail, ordering the jailer to keep them securely guarded.
24
Receiving such an order, he put them into the inner prison and secured their feet in the stocks.
25
About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the prisoners were listening to them.
26
Suddenly there was such a violent earthquake that the foundations of the jail were shaken, and immediately all the doors were opened, and everyone's chains came loose.
27
When the jailer woke up and saw the doors of the prison open, he drew his sword and was going to kill himself, since he thought the prisoners had escaped.
28
But Paul called out in a loud voice, "Don't harm yourself, because all of us are here!"
29
Then the jailer called for lights, rushed in, and fell down trembling before Paul and Silas.
30
Then he escorted them out and said, "Sirs, what must I do to be saved?"
31
So they said, "Believe on the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved-- you and your household."
32
Then they spoke the message of the Lord to him along with everyone in his house.
33
He took them the same hour of the night and washed their wounds. Right away he and all his family were baptized.
34
He brought them up into his house, set a meal before them, and rejoiced because he had believed God with his entire household.
35
When daylight came, the chief magistrates sent the police to say, "Release those men!"
36
The jailer reported these words to Paul: "The magistrates have sent orders for you to be released. So come out now and go in peace."
37
But Paul said to them, "They beat us in public without a trial, although we are Roman citizens, and threw us in jail. And now are they going to smuggle us out secretly? Certainly not! On the contrary, let them come themselves and escort us out!"
38
Then the police reported these words to the magistrates. And they were afraid when they heard that Paul and Silas were Roman citizens.
39
So they came and apologized to them, and escorting them out, they urged them to leave town.
40
After leaving the jail, they came to Lydia's house where they saw and encouraged the brothers, and departed.

Acts chapter 17

1
Then they traveled through Amphipolis and Apollonia and came to Thessalonica, where there was a Jewish synagogue.
2
As usual, Paul went to them, and on three Sabbath days reasoned with them from the Scriptures,
3
explaining and showing that the Messiah had to suffer and rise from the dead, and saying: "This is the Messiah, Jesus, whom I am proclaiming to you."
4
Then some of them were persuaded and joined Paul and Silas, including a great number of God-fearing Greeks, as well as a number of the leading women.
5
But the Jews became jealous, and when they had brought together some scoundrels from the marketplace and formed a mob, they set the city in an uproar. Attacking Jason's house, they searched for them to bring them out to the public assembly.
6
When they did not find them, they dragged Jason and some of the brothers before the city officials, shouting, "These men who have turned the world upside down have come here too,
7
and Jason has received them as guests! They are all acting contrary to Caesar's decrees, saying that there is another king-- Jesus!"
8
The Jews stirred up the crowd and the city officials who heard these things.
9
So taking a security bond from Jason and the others, they released them.
10
As soon as it was night, the brothers sent Paul and Silas off to Beroea. On arrival, they went into the synagogue of the Jews.
11
The people here were more open-minded than those in Thessalonica, since they welcomed the message with eagerness and examined the Scriptures daily to see if these things were so.
12
Consequently, many of them believed, including a number of the prominent Greek women as well as men.
13
But when the Jews from Thessalonica found out that God's message had been proclaimed by Paul at Beroea, they came there too, agitating and disturbing the crowds.
14
Then the brothers immediately sent Paul away to go to the sea, but Silas and Timothy stayed on there.
15
Those who escorted Paul brought him as far as Athens, and after receiving instructions for Silas and Timothy to come to him as quickly as possible, they departed.
16
While Paul was waiting for them in Athens, his spirit was troubled within him when he saw that the city was full of idols.
17
So he reasoned in the synagogue with the Jews and with those who worshiped God, and in the marketplace every day with those who happened to be there.
18
Then also, some of the Epicurean and Stoic philosophers argued with him. Some said, "What is this pseudo-intellectual trying to say?" Others replied, "He seems to be a preacher of foreign deities"-- because he was telling the good news about Jesus and the resurrection.
19
They took him and brought him to the Areopagus, and said, "May we learn about this new teaching you're speaking of?
20
For what you say sounds strange to us, and we want to know what these ideas mean."
21
Now all the Athenians and the foreigners residing there spent their time on nothing else but telling or hearing something new.
22
Then Paul stood in the middle of the Areopagus and said: "Men of Athens! I see that you are extremely religious in every respect.
23
For as I was passing through and observing the objects of your worship, I even found an altar on which was inscribed: TO AN UNKNOWN GOD Therefore, what you worship in ignorance, this I proclaim to you.
24
The God who made the world and everything in it-- He is Lord of heaven and earth and does not live in shrines made by hands.
25
Neither is He served by human hands, as though He needed anything, since He Himself gives everyone life and breath and all things.
26
From one man He has made every nation of men to live all over the earth and has determined their appointed times and the boundaries of where they live,
27
so that they might seek God, and perhaps they might reach out and find Him, though He is not far from each one of us.
28
For in Him we live and move and exist, as even some of your own poets have said, 'For we are also His offspring.'
29
Being God's offspring, then, we shouldn't think that the divine nature is like gold or silver or stone, an image fashioned by human art and imagination.
30
"Therefore, having overlooked the times of ignorance, God now commands all people everywhere to repent,
31
because He has set a day on which He is going to judge the world in righteousness by the Man He has appointed. He has provided proof of this to everyone by raising Him from the dead."
32
When they heard about resurrection of the dead, some began to ridicule him. But others said, "We will hear you about this again."
33
So Paul went out from their presence.
34
However, some men joined him and believed, among whom were Dionysius the Areopagite, a woman named Damaris, and others with them.

Acts chapter 18

1
After this, he left from Athens and went to Corinth,
2
where he found a Jewish man named Aquila, a native of Pontus, who had recently come from Italy with his wife Priscilla because Claudius had ordered all the Jews to leave Rome. Paul came to them,
3
and being of the same occupation, stayed with them and worked, for they were tentmakers by trade.
4
He reasoned in the synagogue every Sabbath and tried to persuade both Jews and Greeks.
5
When Silas and Timothy came down from Macedonia, Paul was occupied with preaching the message and solemnly testified to the Jews that the Messiah is Jesus.
6
But when they resisted and blasphemed, he shook out his clothes and told them, "Your blood is on your own heads! I am clean. From now on I will go to the Gentiles."
7
So he left there and went to the house of a man named Titius Justus, a worshiper of God, whose house was next door to the synagogue.
8
Crispus, the leader of the synagogue, believed the Lord, along with his whole household; and many of the Corinthians, when they heard, believed and were baptized.
9
Then the Lord said to Paul in a night vision, "Don't be afraid, but keep on speaking and don't be silent.
10
For I am with you, and no one will lay a hand on you to hurt you, because I have many people in this city."
11
And he stayed there a year and six months, teaching the word of God among them.
12
While Gallio was proconsul of Achaia, the Jews made a united attack against Paul and brought him to the judge's bench.
13
"This man," they said, "persuades people to worship God contrary to the law!"
14
And as Paul was about to open his mouth, Gallio said to the Jews, "If it were a matter of a crime or of moral evil, it would be reasonable for me to put up with you Jews.
15
But if these are questions about words, names, and your own law, see to it yourselves. I don't want to be a judge of such things."
16
So he drove them from the judge's bench.
17
Then they all seized Sosthenes, the leader of the synagogue, and beat him in front of the judge's bench. But none of these things concerned Gallio.
18
So Paul, having stayed on for many days, said good-bye to the brothers and sailed away to Syria. Priscilla and Aquila were with him. He shaved his head at Cenchreae, because he had taken a vow.
19
When they reached Ephesus he left them there, but he himself entered the synagogue and engaged in discussion with the Jews.
20
And though they asked him to stay for a longer time, he declined,
21
but said good-bye and stated, "I'll come back to you again, if God wills." Then he set sail from Ephesus.
22
On landing at Caesarea, he went up and greeted the church, and went down to Antioch.
23
He set out, traveling through one place after another in the Galatian territory and Phrygia, strengthening all the disciples.
24
A Jew named Apollos, a native Alexandrian, an eloquent man who was powerful in the Scriptures, arrived in Ephesus.
25
This man had been instructed in the way of the Lord; and being fervent in spirit, he spoke and taught the things about Jesus accurately, although he knew only John's baptism.
26
He began to speak boldly in the synagogue. After Priscilla and Aquila heard him, they took him home and explained the way of God to him more accurately.
27
When he wanted to cross over to Achaia, the brothers wrote to the disciples urging them to welcome him. After he arrived, he greatly helped those who had believed through grace.
28
For he vigorously refuted the Jews in public, demonstrating through the Scriptures that Jesus is the Messiah.