“Jesus, A Miracle Worker”/The Trial Before Felix

A Christ Filled Life – Getting To Know Jesus 

“The Trial Before Felix”, Acts 24:1) And after five days Ananias the high priest descended with the elders, and with a certain orator named Tertullus, who informed the governor against Paul.  2) And when he was called forth, Tertullus began to accuse him, saying, Seeing that by thee we enjoy great quietness, and that very worthy deeds are done unto this nation by thy providence, Psalm 12:2; Psalm 55:21.  3) We accept it always, and in all places, most noble Felix, with all thankfulness.  4) Notwithstanding, that I be not further tedious unto thee, I pray thee that thou wouldest hear us of thy clemency a few words.  5) For we have found this man a pestilent fellow (a plague), and a mover of sedition among all the Jews throughout the world, and ringleader of the sect of the Nazarenes: 6) Who also hath gone about to profane the Temple:  whom we took, and would have judged according to our law.  John 18:31.  7) But the chief captain Lysias came upon us, and with great violence took him away out of our hands,  8) Commanding his accusers to come unto thee;  by examining of whom thyself mayest take knowledge of all these things, whereof we accuse him.  9) And the Jews also assented, saying that these things were so.  10) Then Paul, after that the governor had beckoned unto him to speak, answered, Forasmuch as I know that thou hast been of many years a judge unto this nation, I do the more cheerfully answer for myself:  11) Because that thou mayest understand, that there are yet but twelve days since I went up to Jerusalem for to worship.  12) And they neither found me in the temple disputing with any man, neither raising up the people, neither in the synagogues, nor in the city:  13) Neither can they prove the things whereof they now accuse me.  14) But this I confess unto thee, that after The Way which they call heresy, so worship I the God of my fathers, believing all things which are written in the law and in the prophets:  Amos 8:14.  15) And have hope toward God, which they themselves also allow, that there shall be a resurrection of the dead, both of the just and unjust.  Revelation 20:12.  16) And herein do I exercise myself, to have always a conscience void of offence toward God, and toward men.  17) Now after many years I came to bring alms to my nation, and offerings.  2Corinthians 8:4; Galatians 2:10.  18) Whereupon certain Jews from Asia found me purified in the Temple, neither with multitude, nor with tumult.  19) Who out to have been here before thee, and object, if they had ought against me.  20) Or else let these same here say, if they have found any evil doing in me, while I stood before the council,  21) Except it be for this one voice, that I cried standing among them, Touching the resurrection of the dead I am called in question by you this day.  22) And when Felix heard these things, having more perfect knowledge of That Way, he deferred them, and said, When Lysias the chief captain shall come down, I will know the uttermost of your matter.  23) And he commanded a centurion to keep Paul, and to let him have liberty, and that he should forbid none of his acquaintance to minister or come unto him.  Acts 27:3.  24) And after certain days, when Felix came with his wife Drusilla, which was a Jewess, he sent for Paul, and heard him concerning The Faith in Christ.  25) And as he reasoned of righteousness, temperance, and judgment to come, Felix trembled, and answered, Go thy way for this time; when I have a convenient season, I will call for thee.  26) He hoped also that money should have been given him of Paul, that he might loose him:  wherefore he sent for him the oftener, and communed with him.  Exodus 23:8; 1Timothy 6:10.  27) But after two years Porcius Festus came into Felix’ room:  and Felix, willing to shew the Jews a pleasure, left Paul bound.  Exodus 23:2; Proverbs 29:25. 

Quest Study Bible – v2, What was the legal process?  Those making an accusation would present their charges before a magistrate along with the penalties they desired (18:12; John 19:13).  Defendants then had opportunity to present their cases.  Appeals could be made to the provincial governor, such as Felix.  A final appeal could be made to Caesar.  v5, What was the Nazarene sect?  Tertullus, in an attempt to put Paul in the worst possible light, accused him of belonging to a cult that worshiped a man from Nazareth.  He wanted the governor to view Christians as disturbers of the peace.  v14, The Way:  The followers of Christ were known as followers of The Way.  Only later was the term Christian commonly used to identify Believers.  v22, How had Felix learned about Christianity?  He may have heard about it from his wife, Drusilla, a Jewess who would have known about the Messianic movement.  King Agrippa II, Drusilla’s brother; may have been another possible source of information for Felix.  The Romans regarded him as an adviser for Jewish affairs.  v25, What did Paul say that made Felix afraid?  Paul’s talk of righteousness, temperance (self-control) and future judgment  were touchy issues for a governor noted for his ruthlessness.  Tacitus, an ancient Roman writer, said of Felix:  “practicing every kind of cruelty and lust; he exercised royal power with the instincts of a slave.”   Just as Herod Antipas was alarmed by the preaching of John the Baptist (Mark 6:20), Felix may have been conscience-stricken by hearing Paul.  However, he put off matters of faith and repentance just as he deferred passing judgment on Paul.  v27, How could Felix jail a man for two years without sentencing?  Felix, as governor, had complete authority in sentencing.  He could delay indefinitely without making a judgment.

More to come and God Bless You.  


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