April 24, 2023 – Monday
Acts 16:15 NIV
29 The jailer called for lights, rushed in and fell trembling before Paul and Silas. 30 He then brought them out and asked, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?”
31 They replied, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved—you and your household.” 32 Then they spoke the word of the Lord to him and to all the others in his house.
Reading the above verses, if you are not familiar with the story, would likely leave one asking what in the world is going on there? So, let me give you some background. Going back to verses 16 through 28 we find out first; there was a demon possessed slave girl whose masters used her ‘fortune-telling’ abilities to make money. For some reason she followed Paul and Silas and those with them shouting out, These men are servants of the Most High God, who are telling you the way to be saved.
This went on for many days until Paul became so upset, he ordered the demon, In the name of Jesus Christ I command you to come out of her! Of course, the demon left her. All good, right? Nope. Her owners, seeing all their future profit gone, grabbed Paul and Silas then dragged them in front of the authorities, the magistrates making many false claims. Did not matter, they were stripped and beaten with rods, thrown into prison, placed into the inner prison with their feet fastened in stocks.
You might think Paul and Silas would have been praying for vengeance after being so terribly wronged. But they were not doing so, instead, 25 About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the other prisoners were listening to them. Their devoutness was obvious to the other prisoners who were listening. It was then that God intervened, 26 Suddenly there was such a violent earthquake that the foundations of the prison were shaken. At once all the prison doors flew open, and everyone’s chains came loose. Of course, 27 The jailer woke up, and when he saw the prison doors open, he drew his sword and was about to kill himself because he thought the prisoners had escaped. Why was the jailer about to kill himself? Because under Roman law guards who allowed prisoners to escape received the penalty of their escaped prisoners. Paul knew this as well and that is why, 28 Paul shouted, “Don’t harm yourself! We are all here!”
And that dear readers is why, 29 The jailer called for lights, rushed in and fell trembling before Paul and Silas. 30 He then brought them out and asked, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” He knew they could have escaped, but they did not, not a single prisoner. He knew this was the work of God.
That is when they simply gave the jailer the core of the Gospel followed by more, 31 They replied, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved—you and your household.” 32 Then they spoke the word of the Lord to him and to all the others in his house. You may think the jailer did not repent, but in bringing them out and asking Sirs, what must I do to be saved? He was repenting. This was not the end of the story as 33 At that hour of the night the jailer took them and washed their wounds; then immediately he and all his household were baptized. 34 The jailer brought them into his house and set a meal before them; he was filled with joy because he had come to believe in God—he and his whole household. And there is more for you to read and discover.
Bottom Line: Continue to trust God, even when all the events around you make no sense at all. In jail, in stocks, after being beaten they prayed and sang hymns. What an incredible example we have set before us.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, What wonderful lessons you provide for us so that we might never lose hope no matter the circumstances. Thank You. – In Jesus’ Name. Amen.
Riley D. Driver – Pastor
Calvary Chapel of Dayton