PAUL BEFORE THE CIVIL AUTHORITY: GOVERNOR FESTUS Acts 23:1-12
Governor Festus took over from Felix as Governor at Caesarea in AD 59. The chief priest and other Jewish leaders asked Festus to bring Paul to Jerusalem for trial. Their aim was to kill him during the journey to Jerusalem. Festus did not agree to their demands but rather asked them to send delegates to Caesarea for Paul’s trial.
The Jews chose some representatives and they went to Caesarea and accused Paul of charges which they could not prove. In his defense Paul said, “I have never offended the law of the Jews nor the temple, nor against Caesar, I do not seek to escape death; but if there is nothing in the charges against me, no one can give me up to them. I appeal to Caesar.”
After discussion with members of the council, Festus replied, “You have appealed to Caesar, to Caesar you shall go.” Since Palestine was under Rome, Paul hoped to get fair trial as part of his Roman rights. This means that Paul had to travel to Rome for his trial. Palestine was under Rome, all her citizens were guided by the laws of Rome. As a citizen of Rome, Paul had certain privileges and rights. Hence Paul appealed to the emperor in Rome and his appeal was granted by Governor Festus. Rome was the seat of Emperor Caesar. The granting of Paul’s appeal to Caesar meant that Paul had to travel to Rome to appear before Caesar. At this time the palace of Caesar was the highest or supreme court where cases could be tried.
- Why was Paul tried by Governor Festus?
- How did Paul defend himself?
- What are the charges against Paul before the Governor?
- Who is Caesar to Paul?
- What was the intention of the Jews concerning Paul?
- Explain the defense of Paul on the charges against him.
Christian Religious Education for JSS.BK 1, by A.A Adeyinka.Page 76-84
- The wife of Governor Felix was named …… a) Priscilla b) Herodias c) Drusilla
- d) Aquilla
- In what order did Paul defend himself before the civil authorities? Before …. a) Felix, Festus and Agrippa b) Festus, Felix and Agrippa c) Felix, Agrippa and Festus d) Felix, Gamaliel and Agrippa
- Which of the following was not under the Roman Empire a) Judah b) Jerusalem c) Palestine d) Madagaskar
- Paul had to travel to ……… to complete his trial. a) Palestine b) Rome c) Judea d) Cyprus
- Who did Paul appeal to during his trial? a) Agrippa b) Aquilla c) Caesar d) Herod
- Outline the activities of Paul at Philippi.
- Write short notes on the