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Chapter 4

1As they were talking in this way to the people, the high priests, the commander of the Temple, and the Sadducees came up to them, 2greatly disturbed because they were teaching the people and declaring that in the case of Jesus there had been a resurrection from the dead. 3They arrested them, and as it was already evening, they shut them up until next morning. 4But many of those who had heard what they said believed it, and their number grew to be about five thousand.

5On the next day the leading members of the council, the elders, and the scribes met in Jerusalem, 6with Annas the high priest, Caiaphas, John, Alexander, and all who belonged to the high priest’s family. 7They had the apostles brought before them and demanded of them,

“By what power or authority have men like you done this?”

8Then Peter, filled with the holy Spirit, said to them,

“Leaders of the people and members of the council, 9if it is for a benefit conferred upon a helpless man, and as to how he was cured, that we are called to account here today, 10you and the people of Israel must all know that it is through the power of Jesus Christ of Nazareth whom you crucified but whom God raised from the dead, that he stands here before you well. 11He is the stone that you builders rejected, which has become the cornerstone. 12There is no salvation through anyone else, for there is no one else in the world who has been named to men as their only means of being saved.”

13They were amazed to see how outspoken Peter and John were, and to find that they were uneducated men with no advantages. They recognized them as companions of Jesus, 14and seeing the man who had been cured standing beside them, they had nothing to say. 15But they ordered them out of the presence of the council and conferred together. 16They said,

“What are we to do with these men? For it is plain to everyone in Jerusalem that an extraordinary wonder has been done by them. We cannot deny that. 17But to keep it from spreading farther among the people, let us warn them to say nothing to anyone else at all about this person.”

18So they called them in and ordered them not to speak or teach at all about the name of Jesus. 19But Peter and John answered them,

“You must decide whether it is right in the sight of God to obey you instead of him, 20for we cannot help telling of what we have seen and heard.”

21But after further threats they let them go, as they could find no way to punish them, on account of the people, who were all giving honor to God for what had happened, 22for the man on whom this wonder of healing had been done was more than forty years old.

23After being released, the apostles went back to their friends, and told them what the high priests and members of the council had said to them. 24When they heard it, with one impulse they all raised their voices to God and said,

“Master, it was you who made heaven, earth, and sea, and everything that is in them, 25and who said through the holy Spirit by the lips of our forefather David, your slave,

“ ‘Why did the heathen rage,

And the peoples form vain designs?

26The kings of the earth stood by,

And the rulers assembled

Against the Lord and against his Christ.’

27For they have assembled here in this city against your holy servant Jesus, whom you had consecrated—Herod and Pontius Pilate, with the heathen and the peoples of Israel, 28to carry out what your hand and will had destined should happen. 29And now, Lord, take note of their threats, and give your slaves the power to utter your message fearlessly, 30when you stretch out your hand to heal, and signs and wonders are done by the power of your holy servant Jesus.”

31When they had prayed, the place where they were meeting shook, and they were all filled with the holy Spirit, and fearlessly uttered God’s message.

32There was but one heart and soul in the multitude who had become believers, and not one of them claimed anything that belonged to him as his own, but they shared everything they had with one another. 33The apostles gave their testimony to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus with great power, and God’s favor rested richly upon them. 34No one among them was in any want, for any who owned lands or houses would sell them and bring the proceeds of the sale 35and put them at the disposal of the apostles; then they were shared with everyone in proportion to his need. 36Joseph, a Levite, and a native of Cyprus, whom the apostles had named Barnabas, which means Son of Encouragement, 37sold a piece of land that belonged to him, and brought the proceeds and put them at the disposal of the apostles.

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