Atos 15

1 And certain men coming down from Judea were teaching the brothers, "If you are not circumcised in the custom of Moses, you cannot be saved."

2 Therefore when there arose a serious dissension and debate with Paul and Barnabus, they determined that Paul and Barnabas and some others of them should go up to the apostles and elders in Jerusalem concerning this issue.

3 Therefore, being sent forth by the church, they were passing through Phoenicia and Samaria, telling in detail [about] the conversion of the Gentiles; and they were causing great joy to all the brothers.

4 And having come to Jerusalem, they were received by the church and the apostles and the elders; and they declared all that God had done with them.

5 But some of those from the sect of the Pharisees rose up, saying, "It is necessary to circumcise them, and to command them to keep the law of Moses."

6 And the apostles and elders gathered together to see about this matter.

7 And after much dispute, Peter arose and said to them: "Men, brothers, you know that from early days God chose among us, that by my mouth the Gentiles should hear the word of the gospel and believe.

8 And God, who knows the heart, bore witness to them by giving them the Holy Spirit, just as also [He did] to us,

9 and made no distinction between us and them, purifying their hearts by faith.

10 Now therefore, why do you test God by putting a yoke upon the neck of the disciples, which neither our fathers nor we were able to bear?

11 But through the grace of the Lord Jesus, we believe that we will be saved in the same manner as they."

12 Then all the multitude stopped speaking and listened to Barnabas and Paul telling as many signs and wonders as God had done among the Gentiles through them.

13 Now after they had finished speaking, James answered, saying, "Men and brothers, listen to me:

14 Simeon has declared how God first visited [them ]to take from the Gentiles a people for His name.

15 And with this the words of the prophets agree, just as it is written:

16 "After this I will return, and I will build again the tabernacle of David, which has fallen; and its ruins I will rebuild, and I will restore it,

17 in order that the rest of men may seek out the LORD, and all the Gentiles who are called by My name, says the LORD who does all these things.'

18 "Known from everlasting to God are all His works.

19 Therefore I judge that we must not cause trouble for those who are turning to God from [among] the Gentiles;

20 but that we write to them to abstain from things polluted by idols, and from sexual immorality, from things strangled, and [from] blood.

21 "For Moses has had from ancient generations those who proclaim him in each city, being read in the synagogues from one Sabbath to another."

22 Then it seemed best to the apostles and the elders, together with the whole church, to send men being chosen from them to Antioch, together with Paul and Barnabas, namely, Judas who was also named Barsabas, and Silas, leading men among the brothers.

23 Writing by their hand these things: The apostles, the elders, and the brothers, to the brothers in Antioch, and Syria, and Cilicia who are of the Gentiles: Greetings.

24 Inasmuch as we have heard that some went out from among us and troubled you with words, unsettling your souls, saying, 'that you must be circumcised and keep the law'-to whom we gave no [such] command-

25 it seemed best to us, having come to be of the same mind, to send men being chosen to you, with our beloved Barnabas and Paul,

26 men having given over their lives for the sake of the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.

27 We have therefore sent Judas and Silas, who will also tell you the same things by word [of mouth].

28 For it seemed best to the Holy Spirit, and to us, to put on you no greater burden except for these necessary things:

29 that you abstain from meat offered to idols, and from blood, and from [anything] strangled, and from fornication; from which keeping yourselves back, you will do well. Farewell.

30 Then having been dismissed, they came to Antioch; and having gathered the multitude together, they delivered the letter.

31 And when they had read it, they rejoiced over its encouragement.

32 Now Judas and Silas, themselves being prophets also, encouraged and strengthened the brothers with many words.

33 And when time had passed, they were dismissed with peace from the brothers to the apostles.

34 - - -

35 But Paul and Barnabas spent time in Antioch, teaching and preaching the good news of the word of the Lord, with many others also.

36 Then after some days Paul said to Barnabas, "Let us return now and visit our brothers in each city in which we proclaimed the word of the Lord, and see how they are doing."

37 But Barnabas desired to take along with them John called Mark.

38 But Paul considered it fitting not to take along with them the one who withdrew from them in Pamphylia, and who had not gone together with them to the work.

39 Therefore a sharp disagreement arose so that they were separated from one another. And Barnabas, taking along Mark, sailed to Cyprus.

40 But Paul, choosing Silas, departed, being given over to the grace of God by the brothers.

41 And he passed through Syria and Cilicia, strengthening the churches.