Acts 15
Berean Literal Bible

The Dispute over Circumcision
(Genesis 17:9-27; Leviticus 12:1-8; Joshua 5:1-9)

1But certain ones having come down from Judea were teaching the brothers, “Unless you are circumcised according to the custom of Moses, you are not able to be saved.” 2Having been brought about, then, no small commotion and discussion by Paul and Barnabas with them, they appointed Paul and Barnabas and certain others out from them to go up to Jerusalem, to the apostles and elders, about this question.

3Therefore indeed having been sent forward by the church, they were passing through both Phoenicia and Samaria, relating in detail the conversion of the Gentiles, and they were bringing great joy to all the brothers. 4And having come to Jerusalem, they were welcomed by the church and the apostles and the elders. And they declared all that God had done with them.

The Council at Jerusalem

5Now certain of those who believed, from the sect of the Pharisees, rose up, saying, “It is necessary to circumcise them, and to command them to keep the Law of Moses.” 6And both the apostles and the elders were gathered together to see about this matter.

7And much discussion having taken place, Peter having risen up, said to them, “Men, brothers, you know that from the early days God chose among you for the Gentiles to hear by my mouth the word of the gospel, and to believe. 8And the heart-knowing God bore witness to them, having given them the Holy Spirit, as also to us. 9And He made no distinction between both us and them, having purified their hearts by the faith.

10Now therefore, why are you testing God, to put upon the neck of the disciples a yoke that neither our fathers nor we have been able to bear? 11But we believe ourselves to be saved by the grace of the Lord Jesus, in the same manner as they also are.”

12Now the whole multitude kept silent and were listening to Barnabas and Paul relating what signs and wonders God had done among the Gentiles by them. 13And after they were silent, James answered, saying, “Men, brothers, hear me. 14Simeona has related how God first visited to take out of the Gentiles a people for His name. 15And the words of the prophets agree with this, as it is written:

16‘After these things I will return

and will rebuild the tabernacle of David which has fallen,

and its ruins I will rebuild,

and I will set it upright,

17so that the remnant of men may seek out the Lord,

and all the Gentiles, upon whom has been called My name, upon them,

says the Lord, doing these things,

18known from eternity.’b

19Therefore I judge not to trouble those from the Gentiles turning to God, 20but to write to them to abstain from the pollutions of idols, and sexual immorality, and that which is strangled, and from blood. 21For Moses has ones proclaiming him in every city from generations of old, being read in the synagogues on every Sabbath.”

The Letter to the Gentile Believers

22Then it seemed good to the apostles and to the elders, with the whole church, having chosen out from them, to send men to Antioch with Paul and Barnabas: Judas called Barsabbas and Silas, leading men among the brothers, 23having written by their hand:

“The apostles and the elders, brothers,

To those brothers among the Gentiles in Antioch and Syria and Cilicia:


24Inasmuch as we have heard that some went out from us, to whom we had given no instructions,c and troubled you by words, upsetting your minds, 25it seemed good to us, having come with one accord, having chosen men to send to you with our beloved Barnabas and Paul, 26men having handed over their lives for the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. 27Therefore we have sent Judas and Silas, and they are telling you the same things by word of mouth.

28For it seemed good to the Holy Spirit and to us, to lay upon you no further burden, except these necessary things: 29to abstain from things sacrificed to idols, and from blood, and from what is strangled, and from sexual immorality. Keeping yourselves from these, you will do well.


The Believers at Antioch Rejoice

30Therefore indeed having been sent off, they went to Antioch, and having gathered the multitude, they delivered the letter. 31And having read it, they rejoiced at the encouragement.

32Both Judas and Silas, also being prophets themselves, exhorted and strengthened the brothers by much talk. 33And having continued a time, they were sent away in peace from the brothers to those having sent them.d 35But Paul and Barnabas stayed in Antioch, teaching and proclaiming the good news, the word of the Lord, with many others also.

Paul's Second Missionary Journey
(Acts 13:1-3; Acts 18:23-28)

36Now after some days, Paul said to Barnabas, “Indeed, having turned back, let us look after the brothers, how they are, in every city in which we have announced the word of the Lord.” 37Now Barnabas purposed also to take along John, called Mark. 38But Paul thought fit not to take him along, the one having withdrawn from them from Pamphylia and not having gone with them to the work.

39Therefore a sharp disagreement arose, so that they separated from one another. And Barnabas having taken Mark, sailed to Cyprus. 40But Paul, having chosen Silas, went forth, having been committed to the grace of the Lord by the brothers. 41And he was passing through Syria and Cilicia, strengthening the churches.

a 14 Greek Simeon is a variant of Simon
b 16-18 Amos 9:11,12. BYZ and TR says the Lord, who does all these things. 18 Known unto God are all his works from the beginning of the world.
c 24 BYZ and TR include saying you must be circumcised and keep the law
d 33 TR includes 34 Silas, however, decided to remain there.

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