The Book of Acts: Act 23:31 to 26:32 continued: Paul at Caesarea

B. Paul’s Defense before Felix, 24:10-21
1. How does Paul begin his speech?
a. Is this the same type of idle flattery as Tertullus used?
b. Is it merely a polite form of addressing one in authority?
c. Or does Paul truly mean this, pointing to a reason why he might properly expect a fair
hearing from Felix?
1) What does Felix’ long term of rule have to do with the case?
2) Why does Paul want Felix to understand that he has only been in Jerusalem twelve
days, or rather, that it is only twelve days ago that he arrived in Jerusalem?
2. How does Paul answer the accusations of Tertullus? 12, 13?
a. What is one striking difference between the charges and the answer?
b. Why does Paul in this connection mention concrete facts?
c. Why does he flatly deny any possibility of proof?
3. How does Paul describe his own conduct?
a. Whom does Paul worship, according to this testimony? Why does he mention this in the
Roman court?
b. What does he believe, vs. 14?
c. What is the difference between him and his accusers, vs. 14?
d. Wherein is the similarity between Paul and his accusers as to the resurrection?
e. How does Paul explain his presence in Jerusalem? Why does he not mention that these
alms were for Jewish Christians? vs. 17
f. What account does Paul give of his activities in the temple?
1) Why does he mention that those who set upon him were Asian Jews?
2) What is a very strong legal point in his defense here? vs. 19
3) Why does Paul even allow his present accusers to testify if they can of any evil he has
Done? vs. 20
4. How does Paul conclude his defense?
a. What to Paul is the main issue in the case?
b. Was he correct in this?
c. Could this therefore be a matter for Felix to decide as between Paul and the Jews?
C. Felix’ Decision, 24:22, 23.
1. What is the meaning of “having more perfect knowledge of that way”?
a. Where did Felix obtain this knowledge?
b. Did Felix then have a rather clear insight into the case?
2. Why did Felix defer action?
a. Whose testimony did he want yet?
b. Did he not have this testimony already in Lysias’ letter?
c. Was not this sufficient?
d. Was Felix acting properly at this time?
1) Did he resume the hearing later, with Lysias present?
2) What probably motivated Felix?
3. How was Paul treated during his imprisonment?
a. Was this of any value to Paul?
b. Why was he treated this way?
D. Felix’ Further Contact with Paul, 24:24-27.
1. Why did Felix send for Paul and hear him again? Vs. 24
a. Who was Drusilla?
b. Was she Felix’ wife?
c. Why were Felix and Drusilla interested in hearing Paul?
2. Of what did Paul speak to them?
a. What is the meaning of the terms “righteousness, temperance, and judgment”?
b. What did these have to do with the “faith in Christ”?
c. Why did Paul speak particularly of these? Was he giving a lecture in theology? Or did
his subject have something to do with his particular audience at this time?
3. What was Felix’ reaction?
a. Why did Paul’s reasonings on this subject cause Felix to tremble? Study the character and
history of Felix and Drusilla in this connection.
b. Did Paul’s discourse have any positive fruit in Felix? What was his way out?
c. Did Felix learn any righteousness and temperance? What was he looking for from Paul?
Where would Paul obtain money for a bribe for Felix? Would it not have been profitable
for the church to buy Paul’s release? Did Felix have any reason, from his dealings with
the Jews, to think this possible and probable?
d. How long was Paul kept in prison or in custody?
1) Why was Felix replaced?
2) By whom was he replaced? What is known of Festus?
3) Why did Felix leave Paul bound? Why would he want to do the Jews a favor when he
was leaving the governorship to another man?
E. Paul Appeals to Caesar, 25:1-12.
1. Festus is confronted with Paul’s case, vss. 1-5.
a. What did Festus do very soon after he became governor? Why? vs.1
b. What did the Jewish leaders immediately do at this occasion?
1) What prompted them to bring this matter up so soon?
2) What does this reveal concerning the leaders’ attitude toward Paul and the cause he
3) What plot did they still have in mind?
c. What was Festus’reply?
1) Why did Festus want Paul kept at Caesarea?
2) If he stayed at Jerusalem for some ten days yet, could he not have held the hearing
during this time?
3) Was Festus possibly aware of the plot against Paul?
2. The hearing at Caesarea, vss. 6-12.
a. When was this hearing held?
1) When had the News come down?
2) With whom had they come down? Is this significant?
b. Of what did the News accuse Paul at this time?
1) Why are not the charges mentioned in detail?
2) What characterized all of the charges?
3) Is the remark that they could not prove their charges a comment of Luke or is it
historical record of the trial?
c. What was Paul’s reply? Is it any different than his previous reply?
d. What was Festus’ decision at this hearing?
1) Why is he now willing to hold a trial at Jerusalem?
2) Would this make any difference?
3) What is revealed in this brief hearing of Festus as a judge?
3. Paul’s decision not to appeal to Caesar, 10-12.
a. What is Paul’s reply to Festus’ question?
1) What does he mean by “I stand at Caesar’s judgment seat…”?
a) Was this already Paul’s statement of appeal?
b) Or does Paul dimply refer to Festus’ court as a lower tribunal of Caesar?
2) What pointed challenge does Paul make to Festus?
3) Is Paul will to submit to Roman justice if properly administered?
4) Whose judgment does Paul not want to be submitted to?
b. Why does Paul appeal to Caesar?
1) Could he not have waited until after the lower court tried him?
2) Was he not a bit hasty with his appeal?
c. What is Festus’ answer, vs. 12?
1) With whom does Festus first confer?
2) After this conference what decision does he make?
3) Could anyone appeal to Caesar?

Originally Published in:
Vol. 19 No. 3 April 1959