Acts of the Apostles
  English: New American Standard Bible
  Acts of the Apostles 17 [Commentary] [Map] Biblical Art and Illustrations
1 Now when they had traveled through Amphipolis and Apollonia, they came to Thessalonica, where there was a synagogue of the Jews.
2 And according to Paul's custom, he went to them, and for three Sabbaths reasoned with them from the Scriptures,
3 explaining and giving evidence that the Christ had to suffer and rise again from the dead, and saying, "This Jesus whom I am proclaiming to you is the Christ."
4 And some of them were persuaded and joined Paul and Silas, along with a large number of the God-fearing Greeks and a number of the leading women.
5 But the Jews, becoming jealous and taking along some wicked men from the market place, formed a mob and set the city in an uproar; and attacking the house of Jason, they were seeking to bring them out to the people.
6 When they did not find them, they began dragging Jason and some brethren before the city authorities, shouting, "These men who have upset the world have come here also;
7 and Jason has welcomed them, and they all act contrary to the decrees of Caesar, saying that there is another king, Jesus."
8 They stirred up the crowd and the city authorities who heard these things.
9 And when they had received a pledge from Jason and the others, they released them.
10 The brethren immediately sent Paul and Silas away by night to Berea, and when they arrived, they went into the synagogue of the Jews.
11 Now these were more noble-minded than those in Thessalonica, for they received the word with great eagerness, examining the Scriptures daily to see whether these things were so.
12 Therefore many of them believed, along with a number of prominent Greek women and men.
13 But when the Jews of Thessalonica found out that the word of God had been proclaimed by Paul in Berea also, they came there as well, agitating and stirring up the crowds.
14 Then immediately the brethren sent Paul out to go as far as the sea; and Silas and Timothy remained there.
15 Now those who escorted Paul brought him as far as Athens; and receiving a command for Silas and Timothy to come to him as soon as possible, they left.
16 Now while Paul was waiting for them at Athens, his spirit was being provoked within him as he was observing the city full of idols.
17 So he was reasoning in the synagogue with the Jews and the God-fearing Gentiles, and in the market place every day with those who happened to be present.
18 And also some of the Epicurean and Stoic philosophers were conversing with him. Some were saying, "What would this idle babbler wish to say?" Others, "He seems to be a proclaimer of strange deities,"--because he was preaching Jesus and the resurrection.
19 And they took him and brought him to the Areopagus, saying, "May we know what this new teaching is which you are proclaiming?
20 "For you are bringing some strange things to our ears; so we want to know what these things mean."
21 (Now all the Athenians and the strangers visiting there used to spend their time in nothing other than telling or hearing something new.)
22 So Paul stood in the midst of the Areopagus and said, "Men of Athens, I observe that you are very religious in all respects.
23 "For while I was passing through and examining the objects of your worship, I also found an altar with this inscription, `TO AN UNKNOWN GOD.' Therefore what you worship in ignorance, this I proclaim to you.
24 "The God who made the world and all things in it, since He is Lord of heaven and earth, does not dwell in temples made with hands;
25 nor is He served by human hands, as though He needed anything, since He Himself gives to all people life and breath and all things;
26 and He made from one man every nation of mankind to live on all the face of the earth, having determined their appointed times and the boundaries of their habitation,
27 that they would seek God, if perhaps they might grope for Him 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 also are His children.'
29 "Being then the children of God, we ought not to think that the Divine Nature is like gold or silver or stone, an image formed by the art and thought of man.
30 "Therefore having overlooked the times of ignorance, God is now declaring to men that all people everywhere should repent,
31 because He has fixed a day in which He will judge the world in righteousness through a Man whom He has appointed, having furnished proof to all men by raising Him from the dead."
32 Now when they heard of the resurrection of the dead, some began to sneer, but others said, "We shall hear you again concerning this."
33 So Paul went out of their midst.
34 But some men joined him and believed, among whom also were Dionysius the Areopagite and a woman named Damaris and others with them.
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