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4. The Trouble concerning Circumcision
a. A Conference of the Apostles and Elders Held in Jerusalem
1 And certain men came down from Judea and began to teach the brothers, Unless you are circumcised according to the custom of Moses, you cannot be saved.
2 And when no little dissension and discussion with them came about through Paul and Barnabas, the brothers directed Paul and Barnabas and certain others among them to go up to the apostles and elders in Jerusalem concerning this question.
3 They therefore, having been sent forward by the church, passed through both Phoenicia and Samaria, telling in detail about the turning of the Gentiles; and they brought great joy to all the brothers.
4 And when they arrived in Jerusalem, they were received by the church and the apostles and the elders, and they declared the things that God had done with them.
5 But certain men from the sect of the Pharisees who had believed rose up from among them, saying, It is necessary to circumcise them and to charge them to keep the law of Moses.
6 And the apostles and the elders were gathered together to see about this matter.
7 And when much discussion had taken place, Peter rose up and said to them, Men, brothers, you know that from the early days God chose from among you that through my mouth the Gentiles should hear the word of the gospel and believe.
8 And God, the Knower of hearts, bore witness to them, giving them the Holy Spirit even as also to us;
9 And He made no distinction between us and them, cleansing their hearts by faith.
10 Therefore why are you now testing God by placing a yoke upon the neck of the disciples which neither our fathers nor we were able to bear?
11 But we believe that through the grace of the Lord Jesus we are saved in the same way also as they are.
12 And all the multitude became silent, and they listened to Barnabas and Paul relating all the signs and wonders God had done among the Gentiles through them.
13 And when they finished speaking, James answered, saying, Men, brothers, listen to me.
14 Simeon has related how God first visited the Gentiles to take out from them a people for His name.
15 And with this the words of the prophets agree, even as it is written,
16 ``After these things I will return, and I will rebuild the tabernacle of David which has fallen; and I will rebuild its ruins and erect it again,
17 So that the remainder of men may seek out the Lord, even all the Gentiles upon whom My name has been called,
18 Says the Lord, who is making these things known from of old.''
19 Therefore I judge that we do not harass those from the Gentiles who are turning to God,
20 But that we write to them to abstain from the contaminations of idols and fornication and what is strangled and blood.
21 For Moses from ancient generations has in every city those who proclaim him in the synagogues, he being read every Sabbath.
b. The Solution
22 It then seemed good to the apostles and the elders with the whole church to choose men from among them to send to Antioch together with Paul and Barnabas: Judas, who is called Barsabbas, and Silas, leading men among the brothers,
23 Writing to them and sending by their hand the following: The apostles and the elder brothers, to the brothers throughout Antioch and Syria and Cilicia who are of the Gentiles, rejoice.
24 Since we have heard that certain ones who went out from among us have troubled you with their words, unsettling your souls, to whom we gave no instruction,
25 It seemed good to us, having become of one accord, to choose men to send to you together with our beloved Barnabas and Paul,
26 Men who have risked their lives for the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.
27 Therefore we have sent Judas and Silas, who themselves will report the same things by word of mouth.
28 For it seemed good to the Holy Spirit and to us to lay upon you no greater burden than these necessary things:
29 To abstain from things that have been sacrificed to idols and blood and things strangled and fornication, from which if you carefully keep yourselves, you will do well. May you be strong.
30 So when they had been sent away, they went down to Antioch; and when they had gathered the multitude together, they handed them the letter.
31 And when they read it, they rejoiced at the encouragement.
32 And Judas and Silas, also being prophets themselves, exhorted the brothers through much speaking and confirmed them.
33 And when they had spent some time there, they were sent away with peace from the brothers to those who had sent them.
34 But it seemed good to Silas to remain there.
5. The Problem of Barnabas
35 And Paul and Barnabas stayed in Antioch, teaching and announcing the word of the Lord as the gospel with many others also.
36 Now after some days Paul said to Barnabas, Let us return now and visit the brothers in every city in which we announced the word of the Lord, and see how they are doing.
37 And Barnabas intended to take John, who is called Mark, along with them also;
38 But Paul did not consider it suitable to take with them this one who withdrew from them in Pamphylia and did not go with them to the work.
39 And there was a sharp contention, so that they separated from each other; and Barnabas, taking Mark along, sailed away to Cyprus.
6. The Second Journey
a. To Syria and Cilicia
40 But Paul chose Silas and went out, having been commended to the grace of the Lord by the brothers.
41 And he passed through Syria and Cilicia, confirming the churches.