Acts 24:1-23--Paul's trial before Felix
So, it's nice to see legal proceedings like you might expect them to happen. Interesting that the Jews' lawyer Tertullus calls Paul part of "the Nazarene faction"--that's a new name. Tertullus' explanation of the prosecution's position in verses 2-8 sounds reasonable...except that it's all lies.
Paul's defense in verses 10-20 is impressively short, considering some of his other speeches. He basically says that the Jews are lying about him, and I guess there's not much more that he could say. Who is Felix going to believe?? It's a bit surprising that we read in verse 22 that Felix "had an accurate understanding of the Way." Maybe he would have been sympathetic to Paul...if he had rendered a ruling.
So, Felix doesn't make any decision--way to go there, big guy--and says he'll wait for Lysias to show up from Jerusalem. Maybe it makes sense that he's going to hear Lysias' version of the story...except that Lysias never shows up and Felix just keeps meeting with Paul, hoping Paul will give him bribe money. Really? Bribe money? Because Paul has extra cash sitting around? And I'm sure Paul appreciated that Felix brought his wife with him, whom he'd apparently stolen from some other guy. Smooth. He just didn't get it. And then, after 2 years, he was gone and some other ruler came in, and still, Paul sat in prison, for no reason. Pitiful.