Acts 17
International Standard Version
1Paul and Silas traveled through Amphipolis and Apollonia and came to Thessalonica, where there was a Jewish synagogue. 2As usual, Paul entered there and on three Sabbaths discussed the Scriptures with them. 3He explained and showed them that the Messiah had to suffer and rise from the dead: "This very Jesus whom I proclaim to you is the Messiah." 4Some of them were persuaded and began to be associated with Paul and Silas, especially a large crowd of devout Greeks and the wives of many prominent men.

5But the Jewish leaders became jealous, and they took some contemptible characters who used to hang out in the public square, formed a mob, and started a riot in the city. They attacked Jason's home and searched it for Paul and Silas in order to bring them out to the people. 6When they didn't find them, they dragged Jason and some other brothers before the city officials and shouted, "These fellows who have turned the world upside down have come here, too, 7and Jason has welcomed them as his guests. All of them oppose the emperor's decrees by saying that there is another king—Jesus!" 8The crowd and the city officials were upset when they heard this, 9but after they had gotten a bond from Jason and the others, they let them go.

10That night the brothers immediately sent Paul and Silas away to Berea. When they arrived, they went into the Jewish synagogue. 11These people were more receptive than those in Thessalonica. They were very willing to receive the message, and every day they carefully examined the Scriptures to see if those things were so. 12Many of them believed, including a large number of prominent Greek women and men. 13But when the Jewish leaders in Thessalonica found out that the word of God had been proclaimed by Paul also in Berea, they went there to upset and incite the crowds. 14Then the brothers immediately sent Paul away to the coast, but Silas and Timothy stayed there. 15The men who escorted Paul took him all the way to Athens and, after receiving instructions to have Silas and Timothy join him as soon as possible, they left.

16While Paul was waiting for them in Athens, his spirit was deeply disturbed to see the city full of idols. 17So he began holding discussions in the synagogue with the Jews and other worshipers, as well as every day in the public square with anyone who happened to be there. 18Some Epicurean and Stoic philosophers also debated with him. Some asked, "What is this blabbermouth trying to say?" while others said, "He seems to be preaching about foreign gods." This was because Paul was telling the good news about Jesus and the resurrection. 19Then they took him, brought him before the Areopagus, and asked, "May we know what this new teaching of yours is? 20It sounds rather strange to our ears, and we would like to know what it means." 21Now all the Athenians and the foreigners living there used to spend their time doing nothing else other than listening to the latest ideas or repeating them.

22So Paul stood up in front of the Areopagus and said, "Men of Athens, I see that you are very religious in every way. 23For as I was walking around and looking closely at the objects you worship, I even found an altar with this written on it: 'To an unknown god.' So I am telling you about the unknown object you worship. 24The God who made the world and everything in it is the Lord of heaven and earth. He doesn't live in shrines made by human hands, 25and he isn't served by people as if he needed anything. He himself gives everyone life, breath, and everything else. 26From one man he made every nation of humanity to live all over the earth, fixing the seasons of the year and the national boundaries within which they live, 27so that they might look for God, somehow reach for him, and find him. Of course, he is never far from any one of us. 28For we live, move, and exist because of him, as some of your own poets have said: '—Since we are his children, too.' 29So if we are God's children, we shouldn't think that the divine being is like gold, silver, or stone, or is an image carved by humans using their own imagination and skill. 30Though God has overlooked those times of ignorance, he now commands everyone everywhere to repent, 31because he has set a day when he is going to judge the world with justice through a man whom he has appointed. He has given proof of this to everyone by raising him from the dead."

32When they heard about a resurrection of the dead, some began joking about it, while others said, "We will hear you again about this." 33And so Paul left the meeting. 34Some men joined him and became believers. With them were Dionysius, who was a member of the Areopagus, a woman named Damaris, and some others along with them.

The Holy Bible: International Standard Version® Release 2.1
Copyright © 1996-2012 The ISV Foundation


Acts 16
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