After Paul had been seized, he was taken before the council. It was the same council that had crucified Jesus; the same council of which Paul had once been a member; the same council that had stoned Stephen; and the same council that had made repeated efforts to crush the church. Paul stood before this council and gave his life's story. In the first five verses of chapter 22 he tells of his early conduct; in verses 6-16 he tells of his amazing conversion; and in verses 17-21 he tells of the special commission that had been given to him. Notice the one factor that made the Jewish people so irate at Paul. It was not his conduct, for he was gracious and gentle as he presented his speech. His heart overflowed with love and pity for them, so he did not offend them with his attitude. It was the truth of the Word of God that offended them. They were sinful, degenerate men; and, when the truth was told to them, they responded against the one who was speaking the truth.
At this point, it would be good to review the nation of Israel in the Book of Acts. The nation had already committed three murders. John the Baptist had been beheaded, Christ had been crucified, and Stephen had been stoned. The people had great intentions, at this point, of committing the fourth murder; but God delivered Paul through the intervention of a Roman guard. It is interesting to note that on several occasions the Lord appeared to Paul to sustain him. During the Jewish attacks at Corinth, Christ assured Paul that He would be with him and give him many converts (chapter 18:9-11); on board ship going to Rome, during the storm, Christ assured Paul that He would not forsake him (chapter 27:21-25). I feel sure Paul must have leaned heavily on Psalm 23:4, "Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me.".
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