12 o "While thus occupied, as I journeyed to Damascus with authority and commission from the chief priests, 13 "at midday, O king, along the road I saw a light from heaven, brighter than the sun, shining around me and those who journeyed with me. 14 "And when we all had fallen to the ground, I heard a voice speaking to me and saying in the Hebrew language, 'Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting Me? It is hard for you to kick against the goads.' 15 "So I said, 'Who are You, Lord?' And He said, 'I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting. 16 'But rise and stand on your feet; for I have appeared to you for this purpose, p to make you a minister and a witness both of the things which you have seen and of the things which I will yet reveal to you. 17 'I will 1 deliver you from the Jewish people, as well as from the Gentiles, q to whom I 2 now send you, 18 r 'to open their eyes, in order s to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan to God, t that they may receive forgiveness of sins and u an inheritance among those who are v sanctified 3 by faith in Me.'
19 "Therefore, King Agrippa, I was not disobedient to the heavenly vision, 20 "but w declared first to those in Damascus and in Jerusalem, and throughout all the region of Judea, and then to the Gentiles, that they should repent, turn to God, and do x works befitting repentance. 21 "For these reasons the Jews seized me in the temple and tried to kill me. 22 "Therefore, having obtained help from God, to this day I stand, witnessing both to small and great, saying no other things than those y which the prophets and z Moses said would come - 23 a "that the Christ would suffer, b that He would be the first to rise from the dead, and c would proclaim light to the Jewish people and to the Gentiles."
24 Now as he thus made his defense, Festus said with a loud voice, "Paul, d you are beside yourself! Much learning is driving you mad!" 25 But he said, "I am not 4 mad, most noble Festus, but speak the words of truth and reason. 26 "For the king, before whom I also speak freely, e knows these things; for I am convinced that none of these things escapes his attention, since this thing was not done in a corner. 27 "King Agrippa, do you believe the prophets? I know that you do believe." 28 Then Agrippa said to Paul, "You almost persuade me to become a Christian." 29 And Paul said, f "I would to God that not only you, but also all who hear me today, might become both almost and altogether such as I am, except for these chains."
30 When he had said these things, the king stood up, as well as the governor and Bernice and those who sat with them; 31 and when they had gone aside, they talked among themselves, saying, g "This man is doing nothing deserving of death or chains." 32 Then Agrippa said to Festus, "This man might have been set h free i if he had not appealed to Caesar."New King James Version (NKJV) Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc.