Agrippa said to Paul, "You may speak for yourself." Then Paul stretched out his hand, and made his defense.
"I think myself happy, King Agrippa, that I am to make my defense before you this day concerning all the things whereof I am accused by the Jews,
especially because you are expert in all customs and questions which are among the Jews. Therefore I beg you to hear me patiently.
"Indeed, all the Jews know my way of life from my youth up, which was from the beginning among my own nation and at Jerusalem;
having known me from the first, if they are willing to testify, that after the strictest sect of our religion I lived a Pharisee.
Now I stand here to be judged for the hope of the promise made by God to our fathers,
which our twelve tribes, earnestly serving night and day, hope to attain. Concerning this hope I am accused by the Jews, King Agrippa!
Why is it judged incredible with you, if God does raise the dead?
"I myself most assuredly thought that I ought to do many things contrary to the name of Jesus of Nazareth.
This I also did in Jerusalem. I both shut up many of the saints in prisons, having received authority from the chief priests, and when they were put to death I gave my vote against them.
Punishing them often in all the synagogues, I tried to make them blaspheme. Being exceedingly enraged against them, I persecuted them even to foreign cities.
"Whereupon as I journeyed to Damascus with the authority and commission from the chief priests,
at noon, O King, I saw on the way a light from the sky, brighter than the sun, shining around me and those who traveled with me.
When we had all fallen to the earth, I heard a voice saying to me in the Hebrew language, 'Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me? It is hard for you to kick against the goads.'
"I said, 'Who are you, Lord?' "He said, 'I am Jesus, whom you persecute.
But arise, and stand on your feet, for to this end have I appeared to you, to appoint you a servant and a witness both of the things which you have seen, and of the things which I will reveal to you;
delivering you from the people, and from the Gentiles, to whom I send you,
to open their eyes, that they may turn from darkness to light and from the power of Satan to God, that they may receive remission of sins and an inheritance among those who are sanctified by faith in me.'
"Therefore, King Agrippa, I was not disobedient to the heavenly vision,
but declared first to them of Damascus, at Jerusalem, and throughout all the country of Judea, and also to the Gentiles, that they should repent and turn to God, doing works worthy of repentance.