The Holy Bible – Knox Translation
The Acts of the Apostles
They continued their journey through Amphipolis and Apollonia, and so reached Thessalonica. Here the Jews had a synagogue,
and Paul, as his custom was, paid them a visit there. Over a space of three sabbaths he reasoned with them out of the scriptures,
expounding these and bringing proofs from them that the sufferings of Christ and his rising from the dead were fore-ordained; the Christ, he said, is none other than the Jesus whom I am preaching to you.
Some of them were convinced, and threw in their lot with Paul and Silas; a great number, too, of those Gentiles who worshipped the true God, and not a few of the leading women.
The Jews were indignant at this, and they found confederates among the riff-raff of the market-place, to make a disturbance and throw the city into an uproar. Then they made a sudden descent on Jason’s house, in the hope of bringing Paul and Silas out into the presence of the people;
and Jason has given them hospitality. All these folk defy the edicts of Caesar; they say there is another king, one Jesus.
Both the crowd and the city council took alarm at hearing this,
and they demanded bail from Jason and the others before they would let them go.
Thereupon the brethren sent Paul and Silas away by night to Beroea; where, as soon as they arrived, they made their way to the Jewish synagogue.
These were of a better breed than the Thessalonians; they welcomed the word with all eagerness, and examined the scriptures, day after day, to find out whether all this was true;
so that many of them learned to believe, as certain Greek women of fashion did, and not a few of the men as well.
But now some of the Thessalonian Jews, hearing that the word of God had been preached by Paul at Beroea too, came on there, to upset and disturb the minds of the multitude;
whereupon the brethren sent Paul away, to continue his journey up to the coast; Silas and Timothy remained there still.✻
Those who were escorting Paul on his journey saw him as far as Athens, and then left him, with instructions for Silas and Timothy to rejoin him as soon as possible.
And while Paul was waiting for them in Athens, his heart was moved within him to find the city so much given over to idolatry,
and he reasoned, not only in the synagogue with Jews and worshippers of the true God, but in the market-place, with all he met.
He encountered philosophers, Stoics and Epicureans, some of whom asked, What can his drift be, this dabbler?✻ while others said, He would appear to be proclaiming strange gods; because he had preached to them about Jesus and Resurrection.
So they took him by the sleeve and led him up to the Areopagus; May we ask, they said, what this new teaching is thou art delivering?
Thou dost introduce terms which are strange to our ears; pray let us know what may be the meaning of it.
(No townsman of Athens, or stranger visiting it, has time for anything else than saying something new, or hearing it said.)
So Paul stood up in full view of the Areopagus, and said, Men of Athens, wherever I look I find you scrupulously religious.
Why, in examining your monuments as I passed by them, I found among others an altar which bore the inscription, To the unknown God. And it is this unknown object of your devotion that I am revealing to you.
The God who made the world and all that is in it, that God who is Lord of heaven and earth, does not dwell in temples that our hands have made;
no human handicraft can do him service, as if he stood in need of anything, he, who gives to all of us life and breath and all we have.
It is he who has made, of one single stock, all the nations that were to dwell over the whole face of the earth. And he has given to each the cycles it was to pass through and the fixed limits of its habitation,✻
leaving them to search for God; would they somehow grope their way towards him? Would they find him? And yet, after all, he is not far from any one of us;
it is in him that we live, and move, and have our being; thus, some of your own poets have told us, For indeed, we are his children.
Why then, if we are the children of God, we must not imagine that the divine nature can be represented in gold, or silver, or stone, carved by man’s art and thought.
God has shut his eyes to these passing follies of ours; now, he calls upon all men, everywhere, to repent,
because he has fixed a day when he will pronounce just judgement on the whole world. And the man whom he has appointed for that end he has accredited to all of us, by raising him up from the dead.
When resurrection from the dead was mentioned, some mocked, while others said, We must hear more from thee about this.
So Paul went away from among them.
But there were men who attached themselves to him and learned to believe, among them Dionysius the Areopagite; and so did a woman called Damaris, and others with them.
The Holy Bible