biblestudy: Acts (Part Twenty-Three)

Acts 22 - 23:10 Paul's Incredible Skill at Extricating Himself from Trouble
John W. Ritenbaugh
Given 28-Feb-89; Sermon #BS-AC23; 82 minutes

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At the beginning of Acts 22, Paul, after clearing himself of a spurious charge, establishes his identity and credentials as a Jew (a zealous disciple of Gamaliel) in order to build a foundation from which to provide a logical defense of his 'apostasy' and testimony of his miraculous conversion (at the hand of God) on the road to Damascus, showing the continuity between Paul's revelation (from Jesus Christ) and the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. As Paul suggested that the gentiles could approach God independently from Jewish tradition, the crowd became riotous again. Paul saves himself from a certain scourging by establishing his identity as a natural born Roman citizen, giving him the protection of Roman law. Paul extricates himself from another dangerous situation (the convening of the Sanhedrin by the corrupt high priest Ananias) by proclaiming himself a Pharisee (hoping for a resurrection), creating another dissension (between the Pharisees and Sadducees), forcing the Roman soldiers to rescue him.

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