1 Men, brethren, and fathers, hear ye my defence which I make now unto you.
Paul is on trial and he is going to be speaking on his own defense to the people in Jerusalem.
2 (And when they heard that he spake in the Hebrew tongue to them, they kept the more silence: and he saith,)
They're surprised to hear he is destroying the law and Paul is going to be speaking to them in Hebrew and that will give them the feeling he is one of them.
3 I am verily a man which am a Jew, born in Tarsus, a city in Cilicia, yet brought up in this city at the feet of Gamaliel, and taught according to the perfect manner of the law of the fathers, and was zealous toward God, as ye all are this day.
He is saying he is from the land of Judah also. He is very educated under Gamaliel in the law of Moses and hasn't forgot any of it.
4 And I persecuted this way unto the death, binding and delivering into prisons both men and women.
Paul wants them to know he followed the law and persecuted those that didn't follow it even bringing death to them.
5 As also the high priest doth bear me witness, and all the estate of the elders: from whom also I received letters unto the brethren, and went to Damascus, to bring them which were there bound unto Jerusalem, for to be punished.
Those that followed "The Way" being Christians is on record by the high priest. Paul was bringing them to trial in Jerusalem to be punished.
6 And it came to pass, that, as I made my journey, and was come nigh unto Damascus about noon, suddenly there shone from heaven a great light round about me
You can read of this event in Acts 9.
7 And I fell unto the ground, and heard a voice saying unto me, Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me?
Paul was seeking Christians to destroy them and that is the same as going after Christ to destroy Him.
8 And I answered, Who art thou, Lord? And he said unto me, I am Jesus of Nazareth, whom thou persecutest.
9 And they that were with me saw indeed the light, and were afraid; but they heard not the voice of him that spake to me.
10 And I said, What shall I do, Lord? And the Lord said unto me, Arise, and go into Damascus; and there it shall be told thee of all things which are appointed for thee to do.
11 And when I could not see for the glory of that light, being led by the hand of them that were with me, I came into Damascus.
Ever had a flash go off when your picture was taken? It was like that but to the millionth degree. The Light of The Lord blinded Paul.
12 And one Ananias, a devout man according to the law, having a good report of all the Jews which dwelt there,
This is the second Ananias = "whom God has graciously given." He knew the law and he was known as educated in it even to those living in Judea.
13 Came unto me, and stood, and said unto me, Brother Saul, receive thy sight. And the same hour I looked up upon him.
The LORD working through Ananias, gave Paul his sight. It's ALWAYS God that heals, never humans.
14 And he said, The God of our fathers hath chosen thee, that thou shouldest know his will, and see that Just One, and shouldest hear the voice of his mouth.
Paul is doing what we all should be doing [IF] you call yourself a "Christian." That is to profess Christ in front of those that hate you and reject Him.
15 For thou shalt be his witness unto all men of what thou hast seen and heard.
Paul was a witness to them and he is one for us today.
16 And now why tarriest thou? arise, and be baptized, and wash away thy sins, calling on the name of the Lord.
When you call on His name, you are a believer and at that moment of repentance you are saved. Upon believing, you're baptized by His blood.
17 And it came to pass, that, when I was come again to Jerusalem, even while I prayed in the temple, I was in a trance;
Paul is having a vision.
18 And saw him saying unto me, Make haste, and get thee quickly out of Jerusalem: for they will not receive thy testimony concerning me.
19 And I said, Lord, they know that I imprisoned and beat in every synagogue them that believed on thee:
Paul still talking to the crowd, tells them he asked God knowing that God knew he had sent Christians to their death. He wants Paul to tell others of Christ.
20 And when the blood of thy martyr Stephen was shed, I also was standing by, and consenting unto his death, and kept the raiment of them that slew him.
Paul is letting the mob know that he was one of those that stoned Stephen, a great man of God.
21 And he said unto me, Depart: for I will send thee far hence unto the Gentiles.
God says He is going to send a murderer Paul, out into the world to teach of Christ. This should make you think about forgiveness and faith.
22 And they gave him audience unto this word, and then lifted up their voices, and said, Away with such a fellow from the earth: for it is not fit that he should live.
It doesn't matter what you say to evil, they reject good. They heard the change Paul went through and the things Christ said and they still wanted Paul killed.
23 And as they cried out, and cast off their clothes, and threw dust into the air,
Just as evil children throw a fit.
24 The chief captain commanded him to be brought into the castle, and bade that he should be examined by scourging; that he might know wherefore they cried so against him.
The chief captain wanted to know what was being said because he didn't understand Hebrew. The Romans think its Paul that is causing the uproar. We know by now, it's the kenites stirring up this crowd and turning what is good into evil.
25 And as they bound him with thongs, Paul said unto the centurion that stood by, Is it lawful for you to scourge a man that is a Roman, and uncondemned?
Roman law forbidded a Roman citizen be bound and beaten without authority by Caesar himself. Remember Paul was a Roman citizen through his dad.
26 When the centurion heard that, he went and told the chief captain, saying, Take heed what thou doest: for this man is a Roman.
27 Then the chief captain came, and said unto him, Tell me, art thou a Roman? He said, Yea.
28 And the chief captain answered, With a great sum obtained I this freedom. And Paul said, But I was free born.
Paul didn't buy his citizenship, he was "free born" = he was a fully fledged Roman that couldn't be removed from him.
29 Then straightway they departed from him which should have examined him: and the chief captain also was afraid, after he knew that he was a Roman, and because he had bound him.
Know who you are and who you are dealing with when you are in this evil world. Many are fooled because they act before they get all the information on things today. We should study everything as to not be fooled.
30 On the morrow, because he would have known the certainty wherefore he was accused of the Jews, he loosed him from his bands, and commanded the chief priests and all their council to appear, and brought Paul down, and set him before them.
Paul goes to trial.