Acts 21 Lexham English Bible (LEB)
Paul Travels on to Jerusalem
21 And it happened that after we tore ourselves away[a] from them, we put out to sea, and[b] running a straight course we came to Cos and on the next day to Rhodes, and from there to Patara. 2 And finding a ship that was crossing over to Phoenicia, we went aboard and[c] put out to sea. 3 And after we[d] sighted Cyprus and left it behind on the port side,[e] we sailed to Syria and arrived at Tyre, because the ship was to unload its[f] cargo there. 4 And we stayed there seven days after we[g] found the disciples, who kept telling Paul through the Spirit not to set foot in Jerusalem. 5 And it happened that when our days were over, we departed and[h] went on our way, while[i] all of them accompanied us, together with their[j] wives and children, as far as outside the city. And after[k] falling to our knees on the beach and[l] praying, 6 we said farewell to one another and embarked in the ship, and they returned to their own homes.
7 And when[m] we had completed the voyage from Tyre, we arrived at Ptolemais. And after we[n] greeted the brothers, we stayed one day with them. 8 And on the next day we departed and[o] came to Caesarea, and entered into the house of Philip the evangelist, who was one of the seven, and[p] stayed with him. 9 (Now this man had[q] four virgin daughters who prophesied.)
10 And while we[r] were staying there[s] many days, a certain prophet named[t] Agabus came down from Judea. 11 And he came to us and took Paul’s belt. Tying up his own feet and hands, he said, “This is what the Holy Spirit says: ‘In this way the Jews in Jerusalem will tie up the man whose belt this is, and will deliver him[u] into the hands of the Gentiles.’” 12 And when we heard these things, both we and the local residents urged him not to go up to Jerusalem. 13 Then Paul replied, “What are you doing weeping and breaking my heart? For I am ready not only to be tied up, but even to die in Jerusalem for the name of the Lord Jesus!” 14 And because[v] he would not be persuaded, we remained silent, saying, “The will of the Lord be done.”
15 So after these days we got ready and[w] went up to Jerusalem. 16 And some of the disciples from Caesarea also traveled together with us, bringing us[x] to a certain Mnason of Cyprus, a disciple of long standing,[y] with whom we were to be entertained as guests.
Paul Visits the Leaders of the Jerusalem Church
17 And when[z] we came to Jerusalem, the brothers welcomed us gladly. 18 And on the next day Paul went in with us to James, and all the elders were present. 19 And after[aa] greeting them, he began to relate[ab] one after the other[ac] the things which God had done among the Gentiles through his ministry. 20 And when[ad] they heard this,[ae] they began to glorify[af] God. And they said to him, “You see, brother, how many ten thousands there are among the Jews who have believed, and they are all zealous adherents of the law. 21 And they have been informed about you that you are teaching all the Jews who are among the Gentiles the abandonment of Moses, telling them not to circumcise their[ag] children or to live according to our[ah] customs. 22 What then is to be done?[ai] Doubtless they will all hear that you have come! 23 Therefore do this that we tell you: we have[aj] four men who have taken a vow upon themselves.[ak] 24 Take these men and[al] purify yourself along with them and pay their expenses[am] so that they can shave their[an] heads, and everyone will know that the things which they had been informed about you are nothing, but you yourself also agree with observing the law. 25 But concerning the Gentiles who have believed, we have written a letter after[ao] deciding they should avoid food sacrificed to idols and blood and what has been strangled and sexual immorality.” 26 Then Paul took along the men on the next day, and[ap] after he[aq] had purified himself together with them, he entered into the temple courts,[ar] announcing the completion of the days of purification until the time[as] the offering would be presented on behalf of each one of them.
Paul Arrested in the Temple Courts
27 But when the seven days were about to be completed, the Jews from Asia[at] who had seen him in the temple courts[au] stirred up the whole crowd and laid hands on him, 28 shouting, “Israelite men, help! This is the man who is teaching everyone everywhere against the people and the law and this place! And furthermore he also brought Greeks into the temple, and has defiled this holy place!” 29 (For they had previously seen Trophimus the Ephesian in the city with him, whom they thought that Paul had brought into the temple.) 30 And the whole city was stirred up, and the people came running together, and they seized Paul and[av] dragged him outside of the temple courts,[aw] and immediately the doors were shut.
31 And as they[ax] were seeking to kill him, a report came up to the military tribune of the cohort that all Jerusalem was in confusion. 32 He[ay] immediately took along soldiers and centurions and[az] ran down to them. And when[ba] they saw the military tribune and the soldiers, they stopped beating Paul. 33 Then the military tribune came up and[bb] arrested him and ordered him[bc] to be bound with two chains, and inquired who he was and what it was that he had done. 34 But some in the crowd were shouting one thing and others another, and because[bd] he was not able to find out the truth on account of the commotion, he gave orders to bring him into the barracks.[be] 35 And when he came to the steps, it happened that he had to be carried by the soldiers on account of the violence of the crowd, 36 for the crowd of people was following them,[bf] shouting, “Away with him!”
Paul Permitted to Address the Crowd
37 And as he[bg] was about to be brought into the barracks,[bh] Paul said to the military tribune, “Is it permitted for me to say something to you?” And he said, “Do you know Greek? 38 Then you are not the Egyptian who before these days raised a revolt and led out into the wilderness the four thousand men of the Assassins?”[bi] 39 But Paul said, “I am a Jewish man from Tarsus in Cilicia, a citizen of no unimportant city. Now I ask you, allow me to speak to the people.” 40 So when[bj] he permitted him,[bk] Paul, standing there on the steps, motioned with his[bl] hand to the people. And when there[bm] was a great silence, he addressed them[bn] in the Aramaic language, saying,