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Paul Sails for Rome

27 When it was decided that we should sail to Italy, Paul and some other prisoners were transferred to a centurion named Julius, who belonged to the emperor’s division. After boarding a ship from Adramyttium that was about to sail to the ports on the coast of Asia, we put out to sea. Aristarchus, a Macedonian from Thessalonica, went with us.

The next day, we arrived at Sidon, and Julius treated Paul kindly, allowing him to visit his friends there and to receive any care he needed. After putting out from there, we sailed on the sheltered side of Cyprus because the winds were against us. We sailed along the sea off Cilicia and Pamphylia and reached Myra in Lycia. There the centurion found an Alexandrian ship bound for Italy and put us on it. We sailed slowly for a number of days and with difficulty arrived off Cnidus. Then, because the wind was against us, we sailed on the sheltered side of Crete off Cape Salome. Sailing past it with difficulty, we came to a place called Fair Havens, near the town of Lasea. Much time had been lost, and because navigation had become dangerous and the day of fasting had already past, Paul began to warn those on the ship,[a] 10 “Men, I see that during this voyage there will be hardship and a heavy loss not only of the cargo and ship, but also of our lives.”

11 But the centurion was persuaded by the pilot and the owner of the ship and not by what Paul said. 12 Since the harbor was not a good place to spend the winter, most of the men favored putting out to sea from there on the chance that somehow they could reach Phoenix and spend the winter there. It is a Cretian harbor that faces southwest and northwest. 13 When a gentle breeze began to blow from the south, they thought they could make it to Phoenix,[b] so they hoisted anchor and began sailing along the shore of Crete.

14 But it was not long before a violent wind (called a northeaster) swept down from the island.[c] 15 The ship was caught so that it couldn’t face the wind, and we gave up and were swept along. 16 As we drifted to the sheltered side of a small island called Cauda,[d] we barely managed to secure the ship’s lifeboat. 17 The ship’s crew[e] pulled it up on deck and used ropes to brace the ship. Fearing that they would hit the large sandbank near Libya,[f] they lowered the sail and drifted along. 18 The next day, because we were being tossed so violently by the storm, they began to throw the cargo overboard. 19 On the third day they threw the ship’s equipment overboard with their own hands. 20 For a number of days neither the sun nor the stars were to be seen, and the storm continued to rage until at last all hope of our being saved vanished.

21 After they had gone a long time without food, Paul stood among his shipmates[g] and said, “Men, you should have listened to me and not have sailed from Crete. You would have avoided this hardship and damage. 22 But now I urge you to have courage, because there will be no loss of life among you, but only loss[h] of the ship. 23 For just last night an angel of God, to whom I belong and whom I serve, stood by me 24 and said, ‘Stop being afraid, Paul! You must stand before the emperor. Indeed, God has given to you the lives of[i] everyone who is sailing with you.’ 25 So take courage, men, because I trust God that it will turn out just as he told me. 26 However, we will have to run aground on some island.”

The Shipwreck

27 It was the fourteenth night, and we were drifting through the Adriatic Sea, when about midnight the sailors suspected that land was near. 28 After taking soundings, they found the depth to be twenty fathoms. A little later, they took soundings again and found it was fifteen fathoms. 29 Fearing that we might run aground on the rocks, they dropped four anchors from the stern and began praying for daylight to come. 30 Meanwhile, the sailors had begun trying to escape from the ship. They lowered the lifeboat into the sea and pretended that they were going to lay out the anchors from the bow. 31 Paul told the centurion and the soldiers, “Unless these men remain onboard, you cannot be saved.” 32 Then the soldiers cut the ropes that held the lifeboat and set it adrift.

33 Right up to daybreak Paul kept urging all of them to eat something. He said, “Today is the fourteenth day that you have been waiting and going without food, not eating anything. 34 So I urge you to eat something, for it will help you survive, since none of you will lose so much as[j] a hair from his head.” 35 After he said this, he took some bread, thanked God in front of everyone, broke it, and began to eat. 36 Everyone was encouraged and had something to eat. 37 There were 276[k] of us on the ship. 38 After they had eaten all they wanted, they began to lighten the ship by dumping its cargo of[l] wheat into the sea.

39 When day came, they didn’t recognize the land, but they could see a bay with a beach on which they planned to run the ship ashore, if possible. 40 So they cut the anchors free and left them in the sea. At the same time they untied the ropes that held the steering oars, raised the foresail to the wind, and headed for the beach. 41 But they struck a sandbar and ran the ship aground. The bow stuck and couldn’t be moved, while the stern was broken to pieces by the force of the waves. 42 The soldiers’ plan was to kill the prisoners to keep them from swimming ashore and escaping, 43 but the centurion wanted to save Paul, so he prevented them from carrying out their plan. He ordered those who could swim to jump overboard first and get to land. 44 The rest were to follow, some on planks and others on various pieces of the ship. In this way everyone got to shore safely.


  1. Acts 27:9 Lit. warn them
  2. Acts 27:13 Lit. could achieve their purpose
  3. Acts 27:14 Lit. from it
  4. Acts 27:16 Other mss. read Clauda
  5. Acts 27:17 Lit. They
  6. Acts 27:17 Lit. the Syrtis
  7. Acts 27:21 Lit. among them
  8. Acts 27:22 The Gk. lacks loss
  9. Acts 27:24 The Gk. lacks the lives of
  10. Acts 27:34 The Gk. lacks so much as
  11. Acts 27:37 Other mss. read 76
  12. Acts 27:38 Lit. dumping the