Take Every Opportunity
Now when several days had elapsed, King Agrippa and Bernice arrived at Caesarea and paid their respects to Festus. While they were spending many days there, Festus laid Paul's case before the king, saying, "There is a man who was left as a prisoner by Felix; and when I was at Jerusalem, the chief priests and the elders of the Jews brought charges against him, asking for a sentence of condemnation against him. I answered them that it is not the custom of the Romans to hand over any man before the accused meets his accusers face to face and has an opportunity to make his defense against the charges. So after they had assembled here, I did not delay, but on the next day took my seat on the tribunal and ordered the man to be brought before me. When the accusers stood up, they began bringing charges against him not of such crimes as I was expecting, but they simply had some points of disagreement with him about their own religion and about a dead man, Jesus, whom Paul asserted to be alive. Being at a loss how to investigate such matters, I asked whether he was willing to go to Jerusalem and there stand trial on these matters. But when Paul appealed to be held in custody for the Emperor's decision, I ordered him to be kept in custody until I send him to Caesar." Then Agrippa said to Festus, "I also would like to hear the man myself." "Tomorrow," he said, "you shall hear him." (Acts 25:13-22 NASB)
King Agrippa and his sister Bernice come into the picture. They are involved in an incestuous relationship. She is a year younger than he. This Agrippa is Marcus Julius Agrippa II, son of Agrippa I (seen in Acts 12 as the Herod that has James killed with the sword), and great- grandson of Herod the Great (seen in Matthew 2 as the king who wanted to kill the baby Jesus because of his being called the King of the Jews by the wise men who had travelled from the east).
Agrippa had the authority of Rome to appoint the Jewish high priest, the treasurer of the temple, and to dictate the high priests vestments. He, a Jewish king, had come to welcome Festus to his new post.
Neither Felix, Festus, or Agrippa were Christians that we know of. Obviously, with Agrippa living in an incestuous relationship, we see clearly that he was an ungodly king. Paul took the detainment in prison as an opportunity to share the gospel of Jesus Christ to anyone who would listen, including dignitaries.
God help us do the same, without apology!
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Rev. Curtis Norris