English Revised Version
The Dispute over Circumcision
(Genesis 17:9-27; Leviticus 12:1-8; Joshua 5:1-9)
1And certain men came down from Judaea and taught the brethren, saying, Except ye be circumcised after the custom of Moses, ye cannot be saved. 2And when Paul and Barnabas had no small dissension and questioning with them, the brethren appointed that Paul and Barnabas, and certain other of them, should go up to Jerusalem unto the apostles and elders about this question. 3They therefore, being brought on their way by the church, passed through both Phoenicia and Samaria, declaring the conversion of the Gentiles: and they caused great joy unto all the brethren. 4And when they were come to Jerusalem, they were received of the church and the apostles and the elders, and they rehearsed all things that God had done with them.
The Council at Jerusalem
5But there rose up certain of the sect of the Pharisees who believed, saying, It is needful to circumcise them, and to charge them to keep the law of Moses.
6And the apostles and the elders were gathered together to consider of this matter. 7And when there had been much questioning, Peter rose up, and said unto them, Brethren, ye know how that a good while ago God made choice among you, that by my mouth the Gentiles should hear the word of the gospel, and believe. 8And God, which knoweth the heart, bare them witness, giving them the Holy Ghost, even as he did unto us; 9and he made no distinction between us and them, cleansing their hearts by faith. 10Now therefore why tempt ye God, that ye should put a yoke upon the neck of the disciples, which neither our fathers nor we were able to bear? 11But we believe that we shall be saved through the grace of the Lord Jesus, in like manner as they.
12And all the multitude kept silence; and they hearkened unto Barnabas and Paul rehearsing what signs and wonders God had wrought among the Gentiles by them.
13And after they had held their peace, James answered, saying, Brethren, hearken unto me: 14Symeon hath rehearsed how first God did visit the Gentiles, to take out of them a people for his name. 15And to this agree the words of the prophets; as it is written,
16After these things I will return, And I will build again the tabernacle of David, which is fallen; And I will build again the ruins thereof, And I will set it up:
17That the residue of men may seek after the Lord, And all the Gentiles, upon whom my name is called,
18Saith the Lord, who maketh these things known from the beginning of the world. 19Wherefore my judgment is, that we trouble not them which from among the Gentiles turn to God; 20but that we write unto them, that they abstain from the pollutions of idols, and from fornication, and from what is strangled, and from blood. 21For Moses from generations of old hath in every city them that preach him, being read in the synagogues every sabbath.
The Letter to the Gentile Believers
22Then it seemed good to the apostles and the elders, with the whole church, to choose men out of their company, and send them to Antioch with Paul and Barnabas; namely, Judas called Barsabbas, and Silas, chief men among the brethren: 23and they wrote thus by them, The apostles and the elder brethren unto the brethren which are of the Gentiles in Antioch and Syria and Cilicia, greeting: 24Forasmuch as we have heard that certain which went out from us have troubled you with words, subverting your souls; to whom we gave no commandment; 25it seemed good unto us, having come to one accord, to choose out men and send them unto you with our beloved Barnabas and Paul, 26men that have hazarded their lives for the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. 27We have sent therefore Judas and Silas, who themselves also shall tell you the same things by word of mouth. 28For it seemed good to the Holy Ghost, and to us, to lay upon you no greater burden than these necessary things; 29that ye abstain from things sacrificed to idols, and from blood, and from things strangled, and from fornication; from which if ye keep yourselves, it shall be well with you. Fare ye well.
The Believers at Antioch Rejoice
30So they, when they were dismissed, came down to Antioch; and having gathered the multitude together, they delivered the epistle. 31And when they had read it, they rejoiced for the consolation. 32And Judas and Silas, being themselves also prophets, exhorted the brethren with many words, and confirmed them. 33And after they had spent some time there, they were dismissed in peace from the brethren unto those that had sent them forth. 34 35But Paul and Barnabas tarried in Antioch, teaching and preaching the word of the Lord, with many others also.
Paul's Second Missionary Journey
36And after some days Paul said unto Barnabas, Let us return now and visit the brethren in every city wherein we proclaimed the word of the Lord, and see how they fare. 37And Barnabas was minded to take with them John also, who was called Mark. 38But Paul thought not good to take with them him who withdrew from them from Pamphylia, and went not with them to the work. 39And there arose a sharp contention, so that they parted asunder one from the other, and Barnabas took Mark with him, and sailed away unto Cyprus;
40but Paul chose Silas, and went forth, being commended by the brethren to the grace of the Lord. 41And he went through Syria and Cilicia, confirming the churches.
English Revised Version, 1885
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