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“… out of Tziyon will go forth Torah, the word of ADONAI from Yerushalayim.”
(Isaiah 2:3)

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Sections of the Apostolic Writings
The Gospels and Acts • The “Pauline” Letters • General Letters • End Times

Introduction to the Gospels (Good News of the Kingdom) and Acts
Mattityahu (Matthew)  •  Mordichai (Mark)  •  Lukas (Luke)  • Yochanan (John)
Crucifixion Week Chronology3-Year Harmony of the Gospels1-Year Harmony of the Gospels  
Hitgalut (Revelation)  •  P’yilut HaShliyakim (Acts of the Emissaries)  •  The Chosen (Video Series)

Acts Index
Chapters:   1   2   3   4   5   6   7   8   9   10   11   12   13   14
15   16   17   18   19   20   21   22   23   24   25   26   27   28

P’yilut HaSh'liakim
The Acts of the Emissaries

~ 23 ~

Sha'ul Before the Sanhedrin

1Sha'ulPaul gazed steadily at the Sanhedrin and said, “Brothers, I have lived before God in all good conscience until this day.”

2The Cohen HaGadolhigh priest, HananyahAnanias[2], ordered those who stood close to him to strike him on the mouth.

3Then Sha'ul said to him, “God will strike you, you whitewashed wall! You dare judge me by the Torah, and order me to be struck, which is against Torah?”

4Those who stood by said, “You dare to insult God’s high priest?”

5Sha'ul said, “Brothers! I didn’t know that he was High Priest.[5a] The Torah says, ‘You shall not speak evil of a ruler of your people.’”[5b] 6But Sha'ul, knowing that part of the Sanhedrin were Tz'dukimSadducees and part were P'rushimPharisees, shouted, “Men and brothers, I am a ParushPharisee, and a son of P'rushim. I’m being judged over the hope and resurrection of the dead!”[6]

7When Sha'ul had said this, an great argument arose between the P'rushim and Tz'dukim, and the Sanhedrin was divided. 8The Tz'dukim deny the resurrection and the existence of angels and spirits;[8] but the Pharisees believe in all of these. 9A great clamor arose, and some of the SofrimScribes, Torah scholars who were P'rushim stood up, and argued, “We find nothing wrong with this man. If a spirit or angel has spoken to him, let’s not fight against God!”

10The dispute became so great that the commander, fearing that Sha'ul would be torn apart by them, ordered his soldiers to go down and take him by force, and bring him to the barracks.

11The following night, the Lord stood by him, and said, “Be brave, Sha'ul! Just as you have born faithful witness to Me at Yerushalayim, so now you must also bear witness in Rome.

The Conspiracy to Assassinate Sha'ul

12The next morning some of the Y'hudimJudeans formed a conspiracy and took a blood oath that that they would neither eat nor drink until they had killed Sha'ul. 13There were more than forty people in this conspiracy. 14They went to the Cohenim GadolimLeading Priests of the Sanhedrin and the zakenimelders and said, “We have bound ourselves by a blood oath to eat nothing until we have killed Sha'ul. 15Now here’s what you need to do. You and the council need to convince the commander to bring him to you tomorrow so you can get better information to properly judge his case. We are ready to kill him before he gets here.”

16But Sha'ul’s nephew heard about their planned ambush, and he went into the barracks and told Sha'ul. 17Sha'ul called for one of the centurions,[17] and said, “Take this young man to the commander. He has something to tell him.”

18So the centurion took him to the commander, and said, “The prisoner Sha'ul called me and asked me to bring this young man to you. He has something to tell you.”

19The commander took him by the hand, took him aside, and asked him privately, “What is it that you have to tell me?”

20He said, “The Y'hudim have conspired to ask you to bring Sha'ul down to the council tomorrow, pretending they want to get more information about his case. 21Don’t listen to them. More than forty men have bound themselves by a blood oath to neither eat nor drink until they have killed him. They are setting up an ambush. Now they are just waiting for your answer to their request.”

22So the commander let the young man go, warning him, “Don’t tell anyone that you have told me about this.”

Sha'ul Moved to Caesarea

23He called in two of his centurions and said, “Prepare two centuries[23a] to leave for Caesarea at the third hour of the night,[23b] along with seventy cavalry and two hundred spearmen.” 24He also told them to provide horses for Sha'ul, one to ride and others for him when his got tired, and to take him safely to Governor Felix. 25He wrote Felix this letter:

26“Claudius Lysias to the most excellent governor Felix: Greetings.

27“This man was seized by the Y'hudim, and they were about kill him when I came with the soldiers and rescued him, having learned that he was a Roman. 28I wanted to know exactly what he was being charged with, so I brought him before their Sanhedrin. 29I found out that he was being accused about some questions regarding their Torah, but wasn’t charged with anything worthy of either death or prison. 30Then I was told that the Y'hudim planned to ambush and kill him, so I immediately sent him to you and told his accusers to bring their charges against him to you. Farewell.”

31So the soldiers, following their orders, took Sha'ul that night and brought him to Antipatris. 32The next day they left the cavalrymen to go on with him, and returned to the barracks. 33When the cavalrymen arrived at Caesarea they delivered Sha'ul to the governor akong with the the letter. 34When the governor had read it, he asked what province Sha'ul was from. When he learned he was from Cilicia, he said, 35“I will give you a full hearing when your accusers arrive.” Then he ordered him to be kept under guard in Herod’s palace.

Chapter 24


  2. Ananias, Greek ananiaß, son of Nedebaeus, served as High Priest from about47 to 47 or 52 CE. Josephus, Antiquities xx. 5. 2, called him “Ananias ben Nebedeus.” A. C. Hervey described him as “a violent, haughty, gluttonous, and rapacious man, and yet looked up to by the Jews.” Quadratus, governor of Syria, accused Ananias of being responsible for acts of violence. Ananias was sent to Rome for trial (52 CE), but was acquitted by the emperor Claudius. Being a friend of the Romans, Ananias was assassinated by the Sacarii in 66 CE at the beginning of the First Jewish-Roman War. RETURN

 5a. Either Joseph ben Caiaphas (18-36, son-in-law of the high priest Ananus ben Seth) or Jonathan ben Ananus (36-37) would have been High Priest when Sha'ul left Jerusalem. Since Sha'ul had been gone, he had no way of knowing how often the High Priesthood had changed hands in his absence. According to history, everything he said about Hananyah was absolutely true, though.

Under Roman rule, the High Priesthood was appointed by the Roman government and was a commodity to be bought by the highest bidder. Thus, the office changed frequentlty. Here is a list of High Priests from the time of Yeshua’s birth to the destruction of the Temple:

  • Matthias ben Theophilus, 5-4 BCE
  • Joazar ben Boethus, 4 BCE
  • Eleazar ben Boethus, 4-3 BCE
  • Joshua ben Sie, 3 BCE - ?
  • Joazar ben Boethus (restored), ? - 6 CE
  • Ananus ben Seth, 6-15
  • Ishmael ben Fabus (Phiabi), 15-16
  • Eleazar ben Ananus, 16-17
  • Simon ben Camithus, 17-18
  • Joseph ben Caiaphas, 18-36 (son-in-law of the high priest Ananus ben Seth)
  • Jonathan ben Ananus, 36-37
  • Theophilus ben Ananus, 37-41
  • Simon Cantatheras ben Boethus, 41-43
  • Matthias ben Ananus, 43
  • Elioneus ben Simon Cantatheras, 43-44
  • Jonathan ben Ananus, 44 (restored)
  • Josephus ben Camydus, 44-46
  • Ananias son of Nedebeus, 46-58
  • Jonathan, 58
  • Ishmael II ben Fabus, 58-62 (relation to priest of same name from 15-16 CE?)
  • Joseph Cabi ben Simon, 62-63
  • Ananus ben Ananus, 63
  • Jesus son of Damneus, 63
  • Joshua ben Gamla, 63-64 (his wife Martha belonged to family of Boethus)
  • Mattathias ben Theophilus, 65-66
  • Phannias ben Samuel, 67-70 RETURN

 5b. Exodus 22:28 RETURN

  6. The Pharisees believed in the resurrection of the dead and the Sadducees rejected that belief. It was obviously a hot topic for theological debate. Apparently the Pharisees felt that Sha'ul should not be judged for agreeing with them. RETURN

  8. The Tz'dokim (Sadducees) were a Religio-political sect of Judaism in the late Second Temple period that focused on priestly functions and the sacrificial system. Their views and practices were significantly opposed to those of the Pharisees. They denied the authority of the Oral Tradition, the resurrection of the dead, and the existence of angels or spirits. They essentially denied everything supernatural, so how could they possibly actally believe in an invisible God who is Spirit? RETURN

17. A centurion was an officer who was in command of a century (100 infantrymen). RETURN

23a. A century was a unit of 100 infantrymen under the command of a centurion. RETURN

23b. Three hours after sunset, about 9:00 PM. RETURN


Originally posted on Monday, 11 May 2020

Page last updated on Thursday, 21 January 2021 04:15 PM
(Updates are generally minor formatting or editorial changes.
Major content changes are identified as "Revisions”)

Anxiously awaiting Mashiach’s return