Paul Before Governors and Kings: Acts 25:23-27
“23) So, on the next day when Agrippa came together with Bernice amid great pomp, and entered the auditorium accompanied by the commanders and the prominent men of the city, at the command of Festus, Paul was brought in. 24) Festus *said, “King Agrippa, and all you gentlemen here present with us, you see this man about whom all the people of the Jews appealed to me, both at Jerusalem and here, loudly declaring that he ought not to live any longer. 25) But I found that he had committed nothing worthy of death; and since he himself appealed to the Emperor, I decided to send him. 26) Yet I have nothing definite about him to write to my Lord. Therefore I have brought him before you all and especially before you, King Agrippa, so that after the investigation has taken place, I may have something to write. 27) For it seems absurd to me in sending a prisoner, not to indicate also the charges against him.”” Acts‬ ‭25‬:‭23‬-‭27‬ ‭
Amid much pomp and proper protocol, King Agrippa and Bernice were brought into the auditorium. This turned it into a public hearing. All the Roman commanders were present as well as the prominent men of the city. Paul had a huge audience of very prominent people.
The confession of Festus was much like that of Pilate years earlier about Jesus Himself; “I found that he has committed nothing worthy of death.” (Vs 25) The big difference was there were both soldiers and citizens present who quietly supported Paul. He had been in the company of these commanders for two full years.
The Sanhedrin had no occasion to stir the crowd with chants like in Jerusalem against Jesus saying; “Let Him be crucified.” (See Matthew 27:23-23) Besides, this gathering was at the request of King Agrippa and not from the chief priest or elders of the Jews. Protocol called for absolute silence and respect by those in attendance. Any disorderly conduct at this gathering would have been dealt with swiftly by the royal guard.
What transpired in the next chapter is nothing short of any sign or wonder in the New Testament. This was undoubtedly the fulfillment of the words of Jesus in Matthew 10:16-20; ““16) Behold, I send you out as sheep in the midst of wolves; so be shrewd as serpents and innocent as doves. 17) But beware of men, for they will hand you over to the courts and scourge you in their synagogues; 18) and you will even be brought before governors and kings for My sake, as a testimony to them and to the Gentiles. 19) But when they hand you over, do not worry about how or what you are to say; for it will be given you in that hour what you are to say. 20) For it is not you who speak, but it is the Spirit of your Father who speaks in you.”
Paul was standing before governors and kings and the Gentiles with the stage given to him to speak whatever the Holy Spirit put on his mind… and speak he did! He shared both his testimony and a powerful gospel message. Stay tuned for Acts 26.
God is arranging opportunities like this for the gospel today as well. I am hearing numerous reports of people in high places arranging for hearings of the gospel. Jesus wants to reach people in all places with the gospel message. It is our job is to be clean and faithful witnesses for Jesus Christ and the gospel. It is the Holy Spirits job to to save and transform people. Our job is to tell the story, God’s job is to move the mountain.
Daily Bible Commentary By Terry Baxter: Cofounder of GoServ Global ‭‭