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Acts 28:17-31

Paul Addresses the Jewish Community in Rome

28:17 After three days 1  Paul 2  called the local Jewish leaders 3  together. When they had assembled, he said to them, “Brothers, 4  although I had done 5  nothing against our people or the customs of our ancestors, 6  from Jerusalem 7  I was handed over as a prisoner to the Romans. 8  28:18 When 9  they had heard my case, 10  they wanted to release me, 11  because there was no basis for a death sentence 12  against me. 28:19 But when the Jews objected, 13  I was forced to appeal to Caesar 14  – not that I had some charge to bring 15  against my own people. 16  28:20 So for this reason I have asked to see you and speak with you, for I am bound with this chain because of the hope of Israel.” 17  28:21 They replied, 18  “We have received no letters from Judea about you, nor have any of the brothers come from there 19  and reported or said anything bad about you. 28:22 But we would like to hear from you what you think, for regarding this sect we know 20  that people 21  everywhere speak against 22  it.”

28:23 They set 23  a day to meet with him, 24  and they came to him where he was staying 25  in even greater numbers. 26  From morning until evening he explained things 27  to them, 28  testifying 29  about the kingdom of God 30  and trying to convince 31  them about Jesus from both the law of Moses and the prophets. 28:24 Some were convinced 32  by what he said, 33  but others refused 34  to believe. 28:25 So they began to leave, 35  unable to agree among themselves, after Paul made one last statement: “The Holy Spirit spoke rightly to your ancestors 36  through the prophet Isaiah 28:26 when he said,

Go to this people and say,

You will keep on hearing, 37  but will never understand,

and you will keep on looking, 38  but will never perceive.

28:27 For the heart of this people has become dull, 39 

and their ears are hard of hearing, 40 

and they have closed their eyes,

so that they would not see with their eyes

and hear with their ears

and understand with their heart

and turn, 41  and I would heal them.”’ 42 

28:28 “Therefore be advised 43  that this salvation from God 44  has been sent to the Gentiles; 45  they 46  will listen!”

28:29 [[EMPTY]] 47 

28:30 Paul 48  lived 49  there two whole years in his own rented quarters 50  and welcomed 51  all who came to him, 28:31 proclaiming the kingdom of God and teaching about the Lord Jesus Christ 52  with complete boldness 53  and without restriction. 54 

1 tn Grk “It happened that after three days.” The introductory phrase ἐγένετο (egeneto, “it happened that”), common in Luke (69 times) and Acts (54 times), is redundant in contemporary English and has not been translated.

2 tn Grk “he”; the referent (Paul) has been specified in the translation for clarity.

3 tn L&N 33.309 has “‘after three days, he called the local Jewish leaders together’ Ac 28:17.”

4 tn Grk “Men brothers,” but this is both awkward and unnecessary in English.

5 tn The participle ποιήσας (poihsas) has been translated as a concessive adverbial participle.

6 tn Or “forefathers”; Grk “fathers.”

sn I had done nothing against our people or the customs of our ancestors. Once again Paul claimed to be faithful to the Jewish people and to the God of Israel.

7 map For location see Map5 B1; Map6 F3; Map7 E2; Map8 F2; Map10 B3; JP1 F4; JP2 F4; JP3 F4; JP4 F4.

8 tn Grk “into the hands of the Romans,” but this is redundant when παρεδόθην (paredoqhn) has been translated “handed over.”

9 tn Grk “who when.” Because of the length and complexity of the Greek sentence, the relative pronoun (“who”) has been replaced by the personal pronoun (“they”) and a new sentence begun at this point in the translation.

10 tn Or “had questioned me”; or “had examined me.” BDAG 66 s.v. ἀνακρίνω 2 states, “to conduct a judicial hearing, hear a case, question.”

11 sn They wanted to release me. See Acts 25:23-27.

12 tn Grk “no basis for death,” but in this context a sentence of death is clearly indicated.

13 tn That is, objected to my release.

14 tn Or “to the emperor” (“Caesar” is a title for the Roman emperor).

15 tn BDAG 533 s.v. κατηγορέω 1 states, “nearly always as legal t.t.: bring charges in court.” L&N 33.427 states for κατηγορέω, “to bring serious charges or accusations against someone, with the possible connotation of a legal or court context – ‘to accuse, to bring charges.’”

16 tn Or “my own nation.”

17 sn The hope of Israel. A reference to Israel’s messianic hope. Paul’s preaching was in continuity with this Jewish hope (Acts 1:3; 8:12; 14:22; 19:8; 20:25).

18 tn Grk “they said to him.”

19 tn Or “arrived”; Grk “come” (“from there” is implied). Grk “coming.” The participle παραγενόμενος (paragenomeno") has been translated as a finite verb due to requirements of contemporary English style.

20 tn Grk “regarding this sect it is known to us.” The passive construction “it is known to us” has been converted to an active one to simplify the translation.

21 tn Grk “that everywhere it is spoken against.” To simplify the translation the passive construction “it is spoken against” has been converted to an active one with the subject “people” supplied.

22 tn On the term translated “speak against,” see BDAG 89 s.v. ἀντιλέγω 1.

23 tn Grk “Having set.” The participle ταξάμενοι (taxamenoi) has been translated as a finite verb due to requirements of contemporary English style.

24 tn Grk “Having set a day with him”; the words “to meet” are not in the Greek text, but are implied.

25 tn Or “came to him in his rented quarters.”

26 tn BDAG 848 s.v. πολύς 1.b.β.ב states, “(even) more πλείονες in even greater numbers Ac 28:23.”

27 tn The word “things” is not in the Greek text, but has been supplied. Direct objects were often omitted in Greek when clear from the context, but must be supplied for the modern English reader.

28 tn Grk “to whom he explained.” Because of the length and complexity of the Greek sentence, the relative pronoun (“whom”) has been replaced by the pronoun (“them”) and a new sentence begun at this point in the translation.

29 tn BDAG 233 s.v. διαμαρτύρομαι 1 has “to make a solemn declaration about the truth of someth. testify of, bear witness to (orig. under oath)…Gods kingdom 28:23.”

30 sn Testifying about the kingdom of God. The topic is important. Paul’s preaching was about the rule of God and his promise in Jesus. Paul’s text was the Jewish scriptures.

31 tn Or “persuade.”

32 tn Or “persuaded.”

33 tn Grk “by the things spoken.”

34 sn Some were convinced…but others refused to believe. Once again the gospel caused division among Jews, as in earlier chapters of Acts (13:46; 18:6).

35 tn The imperfect verb ἀπελύοντο (apeluonto) has been translated as an ingressive imperfect.

36 tn Or “forefathers”; Grk “fathers.”

37 tn Grk “you will hear with hearing” (an idiom).

38 tn Or “seeing”; Grk “you will look by looking” (an idiom).

39 tn Or “insensitive.”

sn The heart of this people has become dull. The charge from Isaiah is like Stephen’s against the Jews of Jerusalem (Acts 7:51-53). They were a hard-hearted and disobedient people.

40 tn Grk “they hear heavily with their ears” (an idiom for slow comprehension).

41 sn Note how the failure to respond to the message of the gospel is seen as a failure to turn.

42 sn A quotation from Isa 6:9-10.

43 tn Grk “Therefore let it be known to you.”

44 tn Or “of God.”

45 sn The term Gentiles is in emphatic position in the Greek text of this clause. Once again there is the pattern: Jewish rejection of the gospel leads to an emphasis on Gentile inclusion (Acts 13:44-47).

46 tn Grk “they also.”

47 tc Some later mss include 28:29: “When he had said these things, the Jews departed, having a great dispute among themselves.” Verse 29 is lacking in Ì74vid א A B E Ψ 048 33 81 1175 1739 2464 pc and a number of versions. They are included (with a few minor variations) in Ï it and some versions. This verse is almost certainly not a part of the original text of Acts, as it lacks the best credentials. The present translation follows NA27 in omitting the verse number, a procedure also followed by a number of other modern translations.

48 tn Grk “He”; the referent (Paul) has been specified in the translation for clarity.

49 tn Or “stayed.”

50 tn Or perhaps, “two whole years at his own expense.” BDAG 654 s.v. μίσθωμα states, “the customary act. mng. ‘contract price, rent’…is not found in our lit. (Ac) and the pass. what is rented, a rented house is a mng. not found outside it (even Ammonius Gramm. [100 ad] p. 93 Valck. knows nothing of it. Hence the transl. at his own expense [NRSV] merits attention) ἐν ἰδίῳ μισθώματι in his own rented lodgings Ac 28:30 (for the idea cp. Jos., Ant. 18, 235).”

51 tn Or “and received.”

52 tn Or “Messiah”; both “Christ” (Greek) and “Messiah” (Hebrew and Aramaic) mean “one who has been anointed.”

53 tn Or “openness.”

54 sn Proclaiming…with complete boldness and without restriction. Once again Paul’s imprisonment is on benevolent terms. The word of God is proclaimed triumphantly and boldly in Rome. Acts ends with this note: Despite all the attempts to stop it, the message goes forth.

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