Acts 15
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The Dispute over Circumcision

1And certain ones, descending from Judea, were teaching the brothers, “Unless you are circumcised according to the custom of Moses, you cannot be saved.” 2Therefore, when Paul and Barnabas made no small uprising against them, they decided that Paul and Barnabas, and some from the opposing side, should go up to the Apostles and priests in Jerusalem concerning this question. 3Therefore, being led by the church, they traveled through Phoenicia and Samaria, describing the conversion of the Gentiles. And they caused great joy among all the brothers. 4And when they had arrived in Jerusalem, they were received by the church and the Apostles and the elders, reporting what great things God had done with them.

The Council at Jerusalem
(Amos 9:11–15; Galatians 2:1–10)

5But some from the sect of the Pharisees, those who were believers, rose up saying, “It is necessary for them to be circumcised and to be instructed to keep the Law of Moses.”

6And the Apostles and elders came together to take care of this matter. 7And after a great contention had taken place, Peter rose up and said to them: “Noble brothers, you know that, in recent days, God has chosen from among us, by my mouth, Gentiles to hear the word of the Gospel and to believe. 8And God, who knows hearts, offered testimony, by giving the Holy Spirit to them, just as to us. 9And he distinguished nothing between us and them, purifying their hearts by faith. 10Now therefore, why do you tempt God to impose a yoke upon the necks of the disciples, which neither our fathers nor we have been able to bear? 11But by the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, we believe in order to be saved, in the same manner also as them.”

12Then the entire multitude was silent. And they were listening to Barnabas and Paul, describing what great signs and wonders God had wrought among the Gentiles through them.

13And after they had been silent, James responded by saying: “Noble brothers, listen to me. 14Simon has explained in what manner God first visited, so as to take from the Gentiles a people to his name. 15And the words of the Prophets are in agreement with this, just as it was written:

16‘After these things, I will return, and I will rebuild the tabernacle of David, which has fallen down. And I will rebuild its ruins, and I will raise it up,

17so that the rest of men may seek the Lord, along with all the nations over whom my name has been invoked, says the Lord, who does these things.’

18To the Lord, his own work has been known from eternity. 19Because of this, I judge that those who were converted to God from among the Gentiles are not to be disturbed, 20but instead that we write to them, that they should keep themselves from the defilement of idols, and from fornication, and from whatever has been suffocated, and from blood. 21For Moses, from ancient times, has had in each city those who preach him in the synagogues, where he is read on every Sabbath.”

The Letter to the Gentile Believers

22Then it pleased the Apostles and elders, with the whole Church, to choose men from among them, and to send to Antioch, with Paul and Barnabas, and Judas, who was surnamed Barsabbas, and Silas, preeminent men among the brothers, 23what was written by their own hands: “The Apostles and elders, brothers, to those who are at Antioch and Syria and Cilicia, brothers from the Gentiles, greetings. 24Since we have heard that some, going out from among us, have troubled you with words, subverting your souls, to whom we gave no commandment, 25it pleased us, being assembled as one, to choose men and to send them to you, with our most beloved Barnabas and Paul: 26men who have handed over their lives on behalf of the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. 27Therefore, we have sent Judas and Silas, who themselves also will, with the spoken word, reaffirm to you the same things. 28For it has seemed good to the Holy Spirit and to us to impose no further burden upon you, other than these necessary things: 29that you abstain from things immolated to idols, and from blood, and from what has been suffocated, and from fornication. You will do well to keep yourselves from these things. Farewell.”

The Believers at Antioch Rejoice

30And so, having been dismissed, they went down to Antioch. And gathering the multitude together, they delivered the epistle. 31And when they had read it, they were gladdened by this consolation. 32But Judas and Silas, being also prophets themselves, consoled the brothers with many words, and they were strengthened. 33Then, after spending some more time there, they were dismissed with peace, by the brothers, to those who had sent them. 34But it seemed good to Silas to remain there. So Judas alone departed to Jerusalem. 35And Paul and Barnabas remained at Antioch, with many others, teaching and evangelizing the Word of the Lord.

Paul’s Second Missionary Journey Begins
(Acts 13:1–3; Acts 18:23–28)

36Then, after some days, Paul said to Barnabas, “Let us return to visit the brothers throughout all the cities in which we have preached the Word of the Lord, to see how they are.” 37And Barnabas wanted to take John, who was surnamed Mark, with them also. 38But Paul was saying that he ought not to be received, since he withdrew from them at Pamphylia, and he had not gone with them in the work. 39And there occurred a dissension, to such an extent that they departed from one another. And Barnabas, indeed taking Mark, sailed to Cyprus.

40Yet truly, Paul, choosing Silas, set out, being delivered by the brothers to the grace of God. 41And he traveled through Syria and Cilicia, confirming the Churches, instructing them to keep the precepts of the Apostles and the elders.

Catholic Public Domain Version

Section Headings Courtesy Berean Bible

Acts 14
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