13 June. Acts 16:25-34

13 June. Paul and Silas are freed from prison by an earthquake

"About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing songs to God as the other prisoners listened. Suddenly, there was a strong earthquake that shook the foundations of the jail. Then all the doors of the jail broke open, and all the prisoners were freed from their chains."

"The jailer woke up and saw that the jail doors were open. Thinking that the prisoners had already escaped, he got his sword and was about to kill himself [as he feared he would face a painful execution by the Roman authorities for dereliction of duty]."

"But Paul shouted, 'Don't hurt yourself. We are all here.' The jailer told someone to bring a light. Then he ran inside and, shaking with fear, fell down before Paul and Silas. He brought them outside and said, 'Men, what must I do to be saved?'"

"They said to him, 'Believe in the Lord Jesus and you will be saved - you and all the people in your house.' So Paul and Silas told the message of the Lord to the jailer and all the people in his house. At that hour of the night the jailer washed their wounds."

"Then he and all his people were baptised immediately. After this the jailer took Paul and Silas home and gave them food. He and his family were very happy because they now believed in God."

          (Acts 16:25-34)

 

 

Paul and Silas had been stripped and flogged for casting a fortune-telling spirit out of a slave girl in Philippi. They'd then been flung into prison and locked in the ‘inner cell’ until the Roman magistrates met the following morning.

Despite this violent treatment, they were singing hymns of praise to God in their prison cell. Around midnight, Paul and Silas were set free by a violent earthquake. The jailer was terrified because he feared the prisoners had run away and he would be held responsible for their escape.

But Paul and Silas told him not to be afraid as they were still there. The jailer was amazed that these men could praise God despite being chained up in prison, and even more amazed that they hadn't used this opportunity to escape from the jail.

Seeing that this was an amazing act of God, and the disciples possessed some awesome inner strength and reassurance that he didn't have, the jailer (and all his family) became believers and were baptised immediately in the middle of the night.

He took Paul and Silas to his own house, washed and tended the lacerations caused by their flogging, and gave them some food to strengthen them. He (and his family) were filled with the love and power of God, and were overjoyed at becoming followers of Jesus.

The photo shows the remains of what is reputed to have been the prison where Paul was held overnight in Philippi.

We'll finish the story tomorrow, or you can find it @ https://www.thebiblejourney.org/…/10-pauls-journey-to-phryg….


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