Acts 25:27

ESV For it seems to me unreasonable, in sending a prisoner, not to indicate the charges against him.”
NIV For I think it is unreasonable to send a prisoner on to Rome without specifying the charges against him.'
NASB For it seems absurd to me in sending a prisoner, not to indicate the charges against him as well.'
CSB For it seems unreasonable to me to send a prisoner without indicating the charges against him."
NLT For it makes no sense to send a prisoner to the emperor without specifying the charges against him!'
KJV For it seemeth to me unreasonable to send a prisoner, and not withal to signify the crimes laid against him.

What does Acts 25:27 mean?

Festus finishes his introduction. He has invited King Agrippa II, Agrippa's sister Bernice, and the tribunes and officials of Caesarea Maritima to hear a story. This is the testimony of a Jewish man named Paul who had been charged with serious crimes by the Sanhedrin (Acts 25:23–24). The former governor, Felix, had kept Paul in custody for two years after refusing to decide on his case. In truth, Paul is completely innocent, but Felix didn't want to irritate the Sanhedrin by releasing him. Felix may have used secret assassins to squash rebellions, but he didn't want to cross the Jewish leadership (Acts 24:22–27).

When Festus held a second trial, two weeks after his arrival, he understood Felix's point of view. Paul is innocent and the Sanhedrin is formidable. He asked Paul if he wouldn't mind acquiescing to the Sanhedrin's request to move the trial from Caesarea to Jerusalem. Paul chose Rome. Jerusalem was out of the question because the Sanhedrin would just kill him along the way (Acts 25:3). Caesarea was proving, once again, to be useless. As a Roman citizen, Paul had the right to appeal his case to a higher court—an appeal "to Caesar"—and so he did (Acts 25:6–12).

In a moment, Paul will begin his story. He will explain that his main criticism from the Sanhedrin doesn't involve the Jewish or Roman laws. Rather, it's because he believes Jesus of Nazareth rose from the dead about twenty-five years prior. The Jewish leaders are angry because he used to persecute Jesus-followers (Acts 8:1–3; 9:1–2) and now he spreads Jesus' message. And even though Festus thinks Paul is out of his mind, Paul would love it if Agrippa came to a right relationship with Christ (Acts 26:1–29).

When Paul is finished, the officials excuse themselves to discuss the case. They all agree Paul has committed no crime. There's nothing to tell Caesar (Acts 26:30–31). Agrippa adds, "This man could have been set free if he had not appealed to Caesar" (Acts 26:32).
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