Paul's Conversion

Acts 8:5-9:31

85Philip went down to the city of Samaria, and proclaimed to them the Christ. 6The multitudes listened with one accord to the things that were spoken by Philip, when they heard and saw the signs which he did. 7For unclean spirits came out of many of those who had them. They came out, crying with a loud voice. Many who had been paralyzed and lame were healed. 8There was great joy in that city.
9But there was a certain man, Simon by name, who used to practice sorcery in the city, and amazed the people of Samaria, making himself out to be some great one, 10to whom they all listened, from the least to the greatest, saying, “This man is that great power of God.” 11They listened to him, because for a long time he had amazed them with his sorceries. 12But when they believed Philip preaching good news concerning God’s Kingdom and the name of Jesus Christ, they were baptized, both men and women. 13Simon himself also believed. Being baptized, he continued with Philip. Seeing signs and great miracles occurring, he was amazed.
14Now when the apostles who were at Jerusalem heard that Samaria had received the word of God, they sent Peter and John to them, 15who, when they had come down, prayed for them, that they might receive the Holy Spirit; 16for as yet he had fallen on none of them. They had only been baptized in the name of Christ Jesus. 17Then they laid their hands on them, and they received the Holy Spirit. 18Now when Simon saw that the Holy Spirit was given through the laying on of the apostles’ hands, he offered them money, 19saying,

SIMON THE SORCERER

Give me also this power, that whomever I lay my hands on may receive the Holy Spirit.

20But Peter said to him,

SIMON PETER

May your silver perish with you, because you thought you could obtain the gift of God with money! 21You have neither part nor lot in this matter, for your heart isn’t right before God. 22Repent therefore of this, your wickedness, and ask God if perhaps the thought of your heart may be forgiven you. 23For I see that you are in the gall of bitterness and in the bondage of iniquity.

24Simon answered,

SIMON THE SORCERER

Pray for me to the Lord, that none of the things which you have spoken happen to me.

25They therefore, when they had testified and spoken the word of the Lord, returned to Jerusalem, and preached the Good News to many villages of the Samaritans. 26But an angel of the Lord spoke to Philip, saying,

AN ANGEL

Arise, and go toward the south to the way that goes down from Jerusalem to Gaza. This is a desert.

27He arose and went; and behold, there was a man of Ethiopia, a eunuch of great authority under Candace, queen of the Ethiopians, who was over all her treasure, who had come to Jerusalem to worship. 28He was returning and sitting in his chariot, and was reading the prophet Isaiah.
29The Spirit said to Philip,

GOD

Go near, and join yourself to this chariot.

30Philip ran to him, and heard him reading Isaiah the prophet, and said,

PHILIP THE EVANGELIST

Do you understand what you are reading?

31He said,

THE ETHIOPIAN EUNUCH

How can I, unless someone explains it to me?

He begged Philip to come up and sit with him. 32Now the passage of the Scripture which he was reading was this,
“He was led as a sheep to the slaughter.
As a lamb before his shearer is silent,
so he doesn’t open his mouth.
33In his humiliation, his judgment was taken away.
Who will declare His generation?
For his life is taken from the earth.”*
34The eunuch answered Philip,

THE ETHIOPIAN EUNUCH

Who is the prophet talking about? About himself, or about someone else?

35Philip opened his mouth, and beginning from this Scripture, preached to him Jesus. 36As they went on the way, they came to some water, and the eunuch said,

THE ETHIOPIAN EUNUCH

Behold, here is water. What is keeping me from being baptized?

37* 38He commanded the chariot to stand still, and they both went down into the water, both Philip and the eunuch, and he baptized him.
39When they came up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord caught Philip away, and the eunuch didn’t see him any more, for he went on his way rejoicing. 40But Philip was found at Azotus. Passing through, he preached the Good News to all the cities, until he came to Caesarea.
91But Saul, still breathing threats and slaughter against the disciples of the Lord, went to the high priest, 2and asked for letters from him to the synagogues of Damascus, that if he found any who were of the Way, whether men or women, he might bring them bound to Jerusalem. 3As he traveled, he got close to Damascus, and suddenly a light from the sky shone around him. 4He fell on the earth, and heard a voice saying to him,

JESUS

Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me?

5He said,

PAUL

Who are you, Lord?

The Lord said,

JESUS

I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting.* 6But* rise up, and enter into the city, and you will be told what you must do.

7The men who traveled with him stood speechless, hearing the sound, but seeing no one. 8Saul arose from the ground, and when his eyes were opened, he saw no one. They led him by the hand, and brought him into Damascus. 9He was without sight for three days, and neither ate nor drank.
10Now there was a certain disciple at Damascus named Ananias. The Lord said to him in a vision,

GOD

Ananias!

He said,

ANANIAS OF DAMASCUS

Behold, it’s me, Lord.

11The Lord said to him,

GOD

Arise, and go to the street which is called Straight, and inquire in the house of Judah* for one named Saul, a man of Tarsus. For behold, he is praying, 12and in a vision he has seen a man named Ananias coming in, and laying his hands on him, that he might receive his sight.

13But Ananias answered,

ANANIAS OF DAMASCUS

Lord, I have heard from many about this man, how much evil he did to your saints at Jerusalem. 14Here he has authority from the chief priests to bind all who call on your name.

15But the Lord said to him,

GOD

Go your way, for he is my chosen vessel to bear my name before the nations and kings, and the children of Israel. 16For I will show him how many things he must suffer for my name’s sake.

17Ananias departed, and entered into the house. Laying his hands on him, he said,

ANANIAS OF DAMASCUS

Brother Saul, the Lord, who appeared to you on the road by which you came, has sent me, that you may receive your sight, and be filled with the Holy Spirit.

18Immediately something like scales fell from his eyes, and he received his sight. He arose and was baptized. 19He took food and was strengthened. Saul stayed several days with the disciples who were at Damascus. 20Immediately in the synagogues he proclaimed the Christ, that he is the Son of God. 21All who heard him were amazed, and said,

JEWS IN DAMASCUS

Isn’t this he who in Jerusalem made havoc of those who called on this name? And he had come here intending to bring them bound before the chief priests!

22But Saul increased more in strength, and confounded the Jews who lived at Damascus, proving that this is the Christ. 23When many days were fulfilled, the Jews conspired together to kill him, 24but their plot became known to Saul. They watched the gates both day and night that they might kill him, 25but his disciples took him by night, and let him down through the wall, lowering him in a basket. 26When Saul had come to Jerusalem, he tried to join himself to the disciples; but they were all afraid of him, not believing that he was a disciple. 27But Barnabas took him, and brought him to the apostles, and declared to them how he had seen the Lord on the way, and that he had spoken to him, and how at Damascus he had preached boldly in the name of Jesus. 28He was with them entering into* Jerusalem, 29preaching boldly in the name of the Lord Jesus.* He spoke and disputed against the Hellenists,* but they were seeking to kill him. 30When the brothers* knew it, they brought him down to Caesarea, and sent him off to Tarsus. 31So the assemblies throughout all Judea and Galilee and Samaria had peace, and were built up. They were multiplied, walking in the fear of the Lord and in the comfort of the Holy Spirit.

*Acts 8:33 Isaiah 53:7,8
*Acts 8:37 TR adds “Philip said, ‘If you believe with all your heart, you may.’ He answered, ‘I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.’”
*Acts 9:5 TR adds “It’s hard for you to kick against the goads.”
*Acts 9:6 TR omits “But”
*Acts 9:11 or, Judas
*Acts 9:28 TR and NU add “and going out”
*Acts 9:29 TR and NU omit “Jesus” and reverse the order of verses 28 & 29.
*Acts 9:29 The Hellenists were Hebrews who used Greek language and culture.
*Acts 9:30 The word for “brothers” here and where the context allows may also be correctly translated “brothers and sisters” or “siblings.”

QUESTIONS, QUESTIONS, QUESTIONS

  • List all the questions raised in the text. Who makes them? To whom are they made?
  • Is there a question that stands out to you? Why?
  • What questions would you like to be able to ask the author of this text?
  • What implications do these questions from the text have for your life?
World English Bible (WEB)
a Public Domain Modern English translation
of the Holy Bible.

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