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Acts 15 :: New Living Translation (NLT)

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The Council at Jerusalem
Unchecked Copy BoxAct 15:1 - While Paul and Barnabas were at Antioch of Syria, some men from Judea arrived and began to teach the believers[fn]: “Unless you are circumcised as required by the law of Moses, you cannot be saved.”
Unchecked Copy BoxAct 15:2 - Paul and Barnabas disagreed with them, arguing vehemently. Finally, the church decided to send Paul and Barnabas to Jerusalem, accompanied by some local believers, to talk to the apostles and elders about this question.
Unchecked Copy BoxAct 15:3 - The church sent the delegates to Jerusalem, and they stopped along the way in Phoenicia and Samaria to visit the believers. They told them—much to everyone’s joy—that the Gentiles, too, were being converted.
Unchecked Copy BoxAct 15:4 - When they arrived in Jerusalem, Barnabas and Paul were welcomed by the whole church, including the apostles and elders. They reported everything God had done through them.
Unchecked Copy BoxAct 15:5 - But then some of the believers who belonged to the sect of the Pharisees stood up and insisted, “The Gentile converts must be circumcised and required to follow the law of Moses.”
Unchecked Copy BoxAct 15:6 - So the apostles and elders met together to resolve this issue.
Unchecked Copy BoxAct 15:7 - At the meeting, after a long discussion, Peter stood and addressed them as follows: “Brothers, you all know that God chose me from among you some time ago to preach to the Gentiles so that they could hear the Good News and believe.
Unchecked Copy BoxAct 15:8 - God knows people’s hearts, and he confirmed that he accepts Gentiles by giving them the Holy Spirit, just as he did to us.
Unchecked Copy BoxAct 15:9 - He made no distinction between us and them, for he cleansed their hearts through faith.
Unchecked Copy BoxAct 15:10 - So why are you now challenging God by burdening the Gentile believers[fn] with a yoke that neither we nor our ancestors were able to bear?
Unchecked Copy BoxAct 15:11 - We believe that we are all saved the same way, by the undeserved grace of the Lord Jesus.”
Unchecked Copy BoxAct 15:12 - Everyone listened quietly as Barnabas and Paul told about the miraculous signs and wonders God had done through them among the Gentiles.
Unchecked Copy BoxAct 15:13 - When they had finished, James stood and said, “Brothers, listen to me.
Unchecked Copy BoxAct 15:14 - Peter[fn] has told you about the time God first visited the Gentiles to take from them a people for himself.
Unchecked Copy BoxAct 15:15 - And this conversion of Gentiles is exactly what the prophets predicted. As it is written:
Unchecked Copy BoxAct 15:16 - ‘Afterward I will return
and restore the fallen house[fn] of David.
I will rebuild its ruins
and restore it,
Unchecked Copy BoxAct 15:17 - so that the rest of humanity might seek the LORD,
including the Gentiles—
all those I have called to be mine.
The LORD has spoken—
Unchecked Copy BoxAct 15:18 - he who made these things known so long ago.’[fn]
Unchecked Copy BoxAct 15:19 - “And so my judgment is that we should not make it difficult for the Gentiles who are turning to God.
Unchecked Copy BoxAct 15:20 - Instead, we should write and tell them to abstain from eating food offered to idols, from sexual immorality, from eating the meat of strangled animals, and from consuming blood.
Unchecked Copy BoxAct 15:21 - For these laws of Moses have been preached in Jewish synagogues in every city on every Sabbath for many generations.”
The Letter for Gentile Believers
Unchecked Copy BoxAct 15:22 - Then the apostles and elders together with the whole church in Jerusalem chose delegates, and they sent them to Antioch of Syria with Paul and Barnabas to report on this decision. The men chosen were two of the church leaders[fn]—Judas (also called Barsabbas) and Silas.
Unchecked Copy BoxAct 15:23 - This is the letter they took with them: “This letter is from the apostles and elders, your brothers in Jerusalem. It is written to the Gentile believers in Antioch, Syria, and Cilicia. Greetings!
Unchecked Copy BoxAct 15:24 - “We understand that some men from here have troubled you and upset you with their teaching, but we did not send them!
Unchecked Copy BoxAct 15:25 - So we decided, having come to complete agreement, to send you official representatives, along with our beloved Barnabas and Paul,
Unchecked Copy BoxAct 15:26 - who have risked their lives for the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Unchecked Copy BoxAct 15:27 - We are sending Judas and Silas to confirm what we have decided concerning your question.
Unchecked Copy BoxAct 15:28 - “For it seemed good to the Holy Spirit and to us to lay no greater burden on you than these few requirements:
Unchecked Copy BoxAct 15:29 - You must abstain from eating food offered to idols, from consuming blood or the meat of strangled animals, and from sexual immorality. If you do this, you will do well. Farewell.”
Unchecked Copy BoxAct 15:30 - The messengers went at once to Antioch, where they called a general meeting of the believers and delivered the letter.
Unchecked Copy BoxAct 15:31 - And there was great joy throughout the church that day as they read this encouraging message.
Unchecked Copy BoxAct 15:32 - Then Judas and Silas, both being prophets, spoke at length to the believers, encouraging and strengthening their faith.
Unchecked Copy BoxAct 15:33 - They stayed for a while, and then the believers sent them back to the church in Jerusalem with a blessing of peace.[fn]
Unchecked Copy BoxAct 15:35 - Paul and Barnabas stayed in Antioch. They and many others taught and preached the word of the Lord there.
Paul and Barnabas Separate
Unchecked Copy BoxAct 15:36 - After some time Paul said to Barnabas, “Let’s go back and visit each city where we previously preached the word of the Lord, to see how the new believers are doing.”
Unchecked Copy BoxAct 15:37 - Barnabas agreed and wanted to take along John Mark.
Unchecked Copy BoxAct 15:38 - But Paul disagreed strongly, since John Mark had deserted them in Pamphylia and had not continued with them in their work.
Unchecked Copy BoxAct 15:39 - Their disagreement was so sharp that they separated. Barnabas took John Mark with him and sailed for Cyprus.
Unchecked Copy BoxAct 15:40 - Paul chose Silas, and as he left, the believers entrusted him to the Lord’s gracious care.
Unchecked Copy BoxAct 15:41 - Then he traveled throughout Syria and Cilicia, strengthening the churches there.
NLT Footnotes
Greek brothers; also in 15:3, 23, 32, 33, 36, 40.
Greek disciples.
Greek Symeon.
Or kingdom; Greek reads tent.
Amos 9:11-12 (Greek version); Isa 45:21.
Amos 9:11-12 (Greek version); Isa 45:21.
Amos 9:11-12 (Greek version); Isa 45:21.
Greek were leaders among the brothers.
Some manuscripts add verse 34, But Silas decided to stay there.
BLB Footnotes
Some Greek manuscripts exclude this verse. The NLT related footnote for 15:33 states:
15:33 Some manuscripts add verse 34, But Silas decided to stay there.  

Holy Bible, New Living Translation copyright © 1996, 2004, 2007 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

Full copyright information is provided here. Visit the New Living Translation website.

For more information on this translation, see the NLT Preface.

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