The Philosophers at Athens

16 Now while Paul waited for them at Athens, (A)his spirit was provoked within him when he saw that the city was [a]given over to idols. 17 Therefore he reasoned in the synagogue with the Jews and with the Gentile worshipers, and in the marketplace daily with those who happened to be there. 18 [b]Then certain Epicurean and Stoic philosophers encountered him. And some said, “What does this [c]babbler want to say?”

Others said, “He seems to be a proclaimer of foreign gods,” because he preached to them (B)Jesus and the resurrection.

19 And they took him and brought him to the [d]Areopagus, saying, “May we know what this new doctrine is of which you speak? 20 For you are bringing some strange things to our ears. Therefore we want to know what these things mean.” 21 For all the Athenians and the foreigners who were there spent their time in nothing else but either to tell or to hear some new thing.

Addressing the Areopagus

22 Then Paul stood in the midst of the [e]Areopagus and said, “Men of Athens, I perceive that in all things you are very religious; 23 for as I was passing through and considering the objects of your worship, I even found an altar with this inscription:


Therefore, the One whom you worship without knowing, Him I proclaim to you: 24 (C)God, who made the world and everything in it, since He is (D)Lord of heaven and earth, (E)does not dwell in temples made with hands.

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  1. Acts 17:16 full of idols
  2. Acts 17:18 NU, M add also
  3. Acts 17:18 Lit. seed picker, an idler who makes a living picking up scraps
  4. Acts 17:19 Lit. Hill of Ares, or Mars’ Hill
  5. Acts 17:22 Lit. Hill of Ares, or Mars’ Hill