1 At that time Herod the king mistreated those of the congregation.
2 He killed James the brother of John with a sword.
3 He saw that it pleased the Jews so he captured Peter also. This happened during the feast of unleavened bread.
4 When he apprehended him, he put him in prison. He turned him over to four squads of four soldiers each to guard him. After Passover he would be presented to the people.
5 Peter was kept in prison. Prayer was made without ceasing by the congregation to God for him.
6 It was the night before Herod was to bring him to trial. Peter was sleeping between two soldiers. He was bound with two chains. Sentries stood guard at the prison door.
7 Suddenly Gods angel came to him. A light shined in the prison. He struck Peter on the side, and woke him up saying: »Get up quickly.« And his chains fell off of his hands.
8 The angel said: »Dress yourself and put on sandals. Put on your coat and follow me.« So Peter did as he was told.
9 Peter followed him out of the prison. He did not know what the angel was doing was really happening. He thought he saw a vision.
10 They went past the first and second guard to the Iron Gate that leads to the city. The gate opened and went out on the street. The angel then departed from him.
11 Peter came to himself and he said: »Now I know for sure that God sent his angel and delivered me out of the hand of Herod and from all the expectation of the Jews.«
12 After he thought about what happened he went to the house of Mary the mother of John, surnamed Mark. Many were gathered there to pray.
13 Peter knocked on the door and a young woman named Rhoda answered.
14 When she recognized Peters voice she was so overjoyed she ran back into the house to tell others he was there. She forgot to open the door for him.
15 They said to her: »You are mad.« But she kept insisting that it was so. Then they said: »It must be his angel.«
16 But Peter continued knocking. When they opened the door, and saw him, they were astonished.
17 Peter motioned for them to be quiet. Then he told them how God brought him out of the prison. He said: »Tell James and the brothers.« Then he went away to another place.
18 When day came the soldiers were disturbed by what happened to Peter.
19 Herod had a thorough search made for him and could not find him. He cross examined the guards and ordered that they be executed. Herod went from Judea to Caesarea to stay for a while.
20 Herod highly disagreed with them at Tyre and Sidon. But they finally came to an agreement. They secured the support of Blastus a trusted personal servant of the king. They desired peace because their country was supported by the kings country.
21 Dressed in royal apparel, Herod delivered a public address to the people on a special day.
22 The people shouted: »It is the voice of a god, and not of a man.«
23 Immediately the angel of God killed him, because he did not give God the glory. He was eaten by worms and died.
24 The word of God increased and spread.
25 Barnabas and Saul returned from Jerusalem when they had completed their mission. They took with them John, surnamed Mark.