23 Then Paul, looking intently at the Council (Sanhedrin, Jewish High Court), said, “Kinsmen, I have lived my life before God with a perfectly good conscience until this very day.” 2 [At this] the high priest [a]Ananias ordered those who stood beside him to strike Paul on the mouth. 3 Then Paul said to him, “God is going to strike you, you [b]whitewashed wall! Do you actually sit to judge me according to the Law, and yet in violation of the Law order me to be struck?” 4 But those who stood near Paul said, “Are you insulting the high priest of God?” 5 Paul said, “I was not aware, brothers, that he was [c]high priest; for it is written, ‘You shall not speak evil of a ruler of your people.’”
Acts 23:2Ananias served as high priest from a.d. 47-59. He was a violent man who had close ties to Rome and was assassinated by his own people about a.d. 66.
Acts 23:3Paul probably is referring to the outside wall of a tomb, which was considered ritually unclean and polluted. Tombs were usually whitewashed on the outside so that passers-by could see them more clearly and avoid contact with them.
Acts 23:5Under Roman domination, high priests did not serve for life but were replaced from time to time. Paul had not been updated on the current status of the office.
You'll get this book and many others when you join Bible Gateway Plus. Learn more
You must be logged in to view your newly purchased content. Please log in below or if you don't have an account, creating one is easy and only takes a few moments. After you log in your content will be available in your library.
Step 1 - Create an account or log in to start your free trial.
Starting your free trial of Bible Gateway Plus is easy. You’re already logged in with your Bible Gateway account. The next step is to choose a monthly or yearly subscription, and then enter your payment information. Your credit card won’t be charged until the trial period is over. You can cancel anytime during the trial period.
Click the button below to continue.
Step 1 - Create an account or log in to start your subscription.
You’ve already claimed your free trial of Bible Gateway Plus. To subscribe at our regular subscription rate, click the button below.
Upgrade, and get the most out of your new account. An integrated digital Bible study library - including complete notes from the Believer's Bible Commentary and the Cultural Backgrounds Study Bible (NIV and NRSV) - is just a step away! Try it free for 30 days.