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Peter Defends His Actions

11 The apostles and brothers throughout Judea heard that the Gentiles had also received the word of God. When Peter went up to Jerusalem, those who insisted on circumcision criticized him, saying, “You went to visit men who were uncircumcised and ate with them!”

So Peter began to explain everything to them, point by point. He said, “I was in the city of Joppa praying, and in a trance I saw a vision in which an object like a large sheet was let down from heaven by its four corners. It came right to me. When I inspected it very carefully, I saw four-footed animals of the earth, wild beasts, reptiles, and birds of the air. I also heard a voice telling me, ‘Get up, Peter! Kill and eat!’

“But I replied, ‘Certainly not, Lord, for nothing impure or unclean has ever entered my mouth.’

“A voice spoke from heaven a second time: ‘What God has made clean, you must not continue to call unclean.’ 10 This happened three times, and then everything was pulled up into heaven again.

11 “At that very moment, three men who had been sent to me from Caesarea arrived at the house where we were. 12 The Spirit told me to go with them without any hesitation. These six brothers also accompanied me, and we entered the man’s house. 13 He told us how he saw an angel standing in his house and saying, ‘Send to Joppa and call for Simon, the one called Peter. 14 He will speak words to you by which you and all your household will be saved.’

15 “As I began to speak, the Holy Spirit came down on them, just as he came down on us at the beginning. 16 Then I remembered how the Lord had said, ‘John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.’[a] 17 So if God gave them the same gift as he gave us when we believed in the Lord Jesus Christ, who was I to try to stand in God’s way?”

18 When they heard these things, they had no further objections, and they praised God, saying, “So then, God has granted repentance that results in life also to the Gentiles!”

The Church in Antioch

19 Now those who had been scattered by the persecution that took place at the time of Stephen traveled as far as Phoenicia, Cyprus, and Antioch, speaking the word to no one except Jews. 20 But there were some men from Cyprus and Cyrene who came to Antioch and also began to speak to the Greeks, preaching the good news about the Lord Jesus. 21 The Lord’s hand was with them, and a large number of people believed and turned to the Lord.

22 A report about this reached the ears of the church in Jerusalem, and they sent Barnabas to go on to[b] Antioch. 23 When he arrived and saw God’s grace, he was glad and encouraged them all to remain true to the Lord with devoted hearts. 24 He was a good man who was full of the Holy Spirit and faith, and a large number of people were added to the Lord.

25 Then Barnabas went to Tarsus to look for Saul. 26 When he found him, he brought him to Antioch. So for a whole year they met with the church and taught a large number of people. It was in Antioch that the disciples were first called Christians.

The Church in Antioch Sends Relief to Jerusalem

27 In those days some prophets came down from Jerusalem to Antioch. 28 One of them, named Agabus, stood up and indicated by the Spirit that there was going to be a severe famine all over the known world. This took place during the time of Claudius. 29 Each of the disciples, according to his ability, decided to send relief to the brothers[c] who lived in Judea. 30 They did this, sending it to the elders by means of Barnabas and Saul.


  1. Acts 11:16 Acts 1:5
  2. Acts 11:22 Some witnesses to the text omit go on to.
  3. Acts 11:29 When context indicates it, the Greek word for brothers may refer to all fellow believers, male and female.

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