Yet a short time later, the Holy Spirit continued guiding events toward the confirmation of Paul’s mission to Rome. Agrippa (the last of the Herodian kings of Israel) & Bernice (his wife) came to Caesarea for meetings with Festus (still the Roman governor of Israel). During this visit, Festus presented Paul’s case to Agrippa (310).
“There is a certain man named Paul who was left a prisoner by Felix, my predecessor as governor. The Jewish religious leaders asked for a judgment against him. And I replied: ‘Roman law requires in capital cases that the accused meet the accusers face to face, and have opportunity to answer them concerning the charges against him.’ So I convened such a hearing here in Caesarea.
“But Paul’s accusers argued only against two points of Paul’s teaching: that Jesus had been wrongfully executed, and that God had raised him from death three days later. Because I was uncertain of such religious questions, I asked whether Paul was willing to go to Jerusalem, to be tried there concerning these matters. However, when Paul appealed to exercise his right as a Roman citizen to be tried before Caesar, I commanded him to be kept in custody until I can send him to Rome.”
To all this, Agrippa replied, “I also would like to hear this man.” “Then tomorrow,” said Festus, “you shall hear him.”
The next day, Agrippa & Bernice came with great pomp, and entered the auditorium where the commanders & the prominent men of the city were gathered.
At Festus’ command Paul was brought in, and Festus opened the proceedings: “King Agrippa & honored noblemen, here is the man whom the Jews claim is no longer fit to live. But when I investigated his case, I found that he had done nothing deserving of the death penalty. When he appealed to be judged by Caesar, I decided to send him to Rome.
“But I have nothing specific to write to Caesar concerning Paul. Therefore I have brought him here to be examined, especially by you, King Agrippa. I am sure that after your examination, I will know what to write to Caesar. It definitely seems unreasonable to send a prisoner for judgment in Rome, without specifying the charges against him.”
God, please help me to love being ready to serve You in any trial.
(310) Acts 25:13-27