NSB(i) 1 When we made it to shore safely we learned that the island was called Malta. 2 The natives there were very friendly to us. It started to rain and was cold, so they built a fire and made us all welcome. 3 Paul gathered an armful of sticks and put them on the fire. A snake came out on account of the heat and fastened itself to his hand. 4 The natives saw the snake hanging on Paul’s hand and said to one another: »This man must be a murderer, but Fate will not let him live, even though he escaped from the sea.« 5 But Paul shook the snake off into the fire without being harmed at all. 6 The people were waiting for him to swell up or suddenly drop dead. They waited a long time and saw nothing unusual happen to him. They changed their minds and said he was a god. 7 A man named Publius, who was the governor of the island, had property around the area. He welcomed us and treated us kindly. We were his guests for three days. 8 His father was sick in bed. He suffered from fever and dysentery. Paul went to him, prayed, placed his hands on him, and made him well. 9 After that happened, other sick people on the island went to Paul and were made well. 10 They honored us with many gifts. When we were going to set sail, they put whatever we needed on board. 11 After three months we sailed on an Alexandrian ship that wintered at the island. The ship had the gods Castor and Pollux carved on its front. 12 We stopped at the city of Syracuse and stayed there three days. 13 We sailed from Syracuse and arrived at the city of Rhegium. The next day a south wind began to blow, and two days later we arrived at the city of Puteoli. 14 We came across some of the brothers, who kept us with them for seven days; and so we arrived at Rome. 15 When the brothers had news for us they came out from town as far as Appius Forum (Market place on the Appian Road) and the Three Taverns to have a meeting with us. Paul saw them and praised God. He was encouraged. 16 When we arrived at Rome they allowed Paul to have a house for himself and the armed man who kept watch over him. 17 Then after three days he sent for the chief men of the Jews. When they assembled, he said to them: »My brothers, though I had done nothing against the people or the ways of our fathers, I was arrested in Jerusalem and handed over to the Romans. 18 »They questioned me and were ready to set me free, for they found me not guilty of any crime deserving death. 19 »When the Jews brought charges against me again I presented my cause to Caesar for I said nothing against my nation. 20 The reason I sent for you is to talk with you. I am in these chains because of the hope of Israel.« 21 They said to him: »We have not had letters from Judea about you, and none of the brothers have come to us to give an account or say any evil about you. 22 »We desire to hear your opinion concerning this sect. We have knowledge that it is attacked in all places.« 23 So they set a date with Paul. A large number of them came that day to the place where Paul was staying. From morning till night he explained his message about the Kingdom of God to them. He tried to convince them about Jesus by quoting from the Law of Moses and the writings of the prophets. 24 Some of them were convinced by his words, but others did not believe. 25 So they left, disagreeing among themselves, after Paul had said this one thing: »How well the Holy Spirit spoke through the prophet Isaiah to your ancestors!« 26 He said, »Go and say to this people, ‘You will listen and listen, but not understand. You will look and look, but not see. 27 ‘»These people have closed their mind and are hard of hearing. They have shut their eyes so that their eyes never see. Their ears never hear. Their minds never understand. They never turn to me for healing.’ 28 »You need to know that God has sent his salvation to people who are not Jews. They will listen.« 29 After he said this the Jews left arguing among themselves. 30 Paul rented a place to live for two full years and welcomed everyone who came to him. 31 He spread the message about God’s Kingdom and taught boldly about the Lord Jesus Christ. And no one stopped him!