Acts 23:28

ESV And desiring to know the charge for which they were accusing him, I brought him down to their council.
NIV I wanted to know why they were accusing him, so I brought him to their Sanhedrin.
NASB And wanting to ascertain the basis for the charges they were bringing against him, I brought him down to their Council;
CSB Wanting to know the charge they were accusing him of, I brought him down before their Sanhedrin.
NLT Then I took him to their high council to try to learn the basis of the accusations against him.
KJV And when I would have known the cause wherefore they accused him, I brought him forth into their council:

What does Acts 23:28 mean?

When Lysias the tribune recounts the events surrounding Paul's arrest to Felix the governor, he leaves out a few things. Lysias arrested Paul because a mob was trying to kill him in the court outside the temple (Acts 21:30–33). Lysias wanted to know why, but he didn't start with the Sanhedrin. First, he asked the mob, most of whom didn't know (Acts 21:33–34). Then he let Paul address the crowd which riled the mob up even more (Acts 22:1–23). Finally, he resorted to the traditional way of extracting information: flogging. Paul was already tied up when he got the attention of a centurion, warning him he was a Roman citizen (Acts 22:24–29). Lysias could have been charged with binding Paul's hands; if he'd had him flogged it would have been much worse.

Only then did Lysias think to ask the Jewish religious leaders in the Sanhedrin (Acts 22:30). It didn't go well. Paul, perhaps accidentally, insulted the high priest. Then, probably intentionally, he set the Pharisees and Sadducees against each other. Again, Lysias had to rescue Paul from a melee (Acts 23:1–10).

Although Paul's initial accusers were Jews from modern-day Turkey (Acts 21:27–28), the Sanhedrin would like Paul out of the way, as well. So, when forty men approached them with an assassination plot, they agreed. Unfortunately for them, Paul's nephew overheard and told the tribune, and the tribune sent Paul to Caesarea (Acts 23:12–22). The Sanhedrin will try one more time, before Felix. Felix will agree with Lysias that Paul may be a pain but he hasn't broken Roman law (Acts 23:29; 24:22). Religious leaders opposed to Christianity would have to make do with Felix's decision to keep Paul under house arrest (Acts 24:27).
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