That poor commander! He has so far failed three times in determining why the Jews are so intent on doing murder to Paul. His assumption that Paul must be the marrauding Egyptian vanished when Paul spoke in Greek. And, Paul's defense before an angry mob failed miserably when they went nuts over one word: Gentiles (of which the commander was one).
After rescuing Paul from their lethal longing, the commander decided to beat the truth out of him. Oops! Can't do that; he's a Roman citizen and he has not been found guilty. It would be illegal--highly so--to lay even one lash on Paul...or even to bind him for such a purpose.
Poor commander, holding a prisoner and not knowing why! Here's a new plan. Let's take him to the high court of those same murderous Jews. Well, that's where this chapter really starts to get exciting. Paul plays his trump card--I am a Pharisee--and watches the counsel turn into a house of hatred and chaos.
Barely keeping Paul from being torn assunder, the commander remains at a loss. But Paul continues to have opportunity to bear his testimony: Jesus is the one they all are hoping for, the Jews just won't accept it.