Acts 24-26: Paul Spreads the Gospel

New Testament: Student Study guide, (2003), 108–109

When the Jewish leaders succeeded in getting the Romans to crucify Jesus Christ they thought that would be the end of Christianity. To their dismay, the “good news” of the gospel not only survived but continued to spread faster than before. The Christians reached out to the hated Gentiles and promised them salvation through Jesus Christ on equal footing with the Jews—without the law of Moses. As you read Acts 24–26, look for what the Jewish leaders tried to do to Paul so they could stop the spread of the gospel. Did they succeed?A similar situation arose when Jesus Christ restored His gospel in the latter days. The mobs thought they had put an end to the restored Church when they killed the Prophet Joseph Smith but, as he had prophesied, “no unhallowed hand can stop the work from progressing; … the truth of God will go forth boldly, nobly, and independent, till it has penetrated every continent, visited every clime, swept every country, and sounded in every ear, till the purposes of God shall be accomplished, and the Great Jehovah shall say the work is done” (History of the Church, 4:540).

Understanding the Scriptures

Acts 24

Tedious (v. 4) Bothersome  
Clemency (v. 4) Fairness, mercy  
Sedition (v. 5) Rebellion, treason  
Profane (v. 6) Defile, make unclean  
Heresy (v. 14) False doctrine  
Deferred them (v. 22) Made them wait  

Acts 24:27—Who Was Festus?

Porcius Festus was a Roman who was appointed to replace Felix as governor of Judea (see Bible Dictionary, “Festus,” p. 674).

Acts 25

Ascended (v. 1) Went up  
Grievous (v. 7) Serious  
Appeal unto Caesar (vv. 11, 21, 25) It was the right of a Roman citizen to ask to be judged before Caesar Augustus  
Licence (v. 16) Right, permission  
Pomp (v. 23) Show of importance  

Acts 25:13—Who Were King Agrippa and Bernice?

The King Agrippa mentioned here is Herod Agrippa II, the son of Herod Agrippa I. Bernice was his sister (see Bible Dictionary, “Herod,” pp. 700–1).

Acts 26

Beseech (v. 3) Ask, plead  
Straitest sect (v. 5) Strict religious group; the Pharisees  
Pricks (v. 14) Fight against the promptings of the Spirit  
Mad (v. 24) Insane  

Studying the Scriptures

Do one of the following activities (A–B) as you study Acts 24–26.

Activity A iconBe a Courtroom Observer

Paul before Felix

Acts 24 tells of Paul’s two appearances before Felix. Review what the following people said and did in those two trials and answer the questions in your notebook as if you had been there watching:

  1. 1.

    What did Tertullus say about Felix and Paul? How much of it was true?

  2. 2.

    What did Paul say was the real reason for his arrest?

  3. 3.

    What did Paul say that caused Felix to tremble?

  4. 4.

    Why didn’t Felix let Paul go?

  5. 5.

    Who do you know who has the courage to stand up for what he or she believes, even in difficult situations. What could you do to develop that kind of courage?

Activity B icon“Almost Thou Persuadest Me to Be a Christian

  1. 1.

    Review Acts 26 and compare the differences in the reactions of Festus, the Roman, and Agrippa, the Jew, to Paul’s testimony. Which of them said, “Almost thou persuadest me to be a Christian”? Why do you think each man reacted the way he did?

  2. 2.

    What might prevent people today from fully accepting the truth when they hear it?