Thursday, August 24, 2023
A mob quickly formed against Paul and Silas [when the master incited the city since Paul cast the profit-making demon out of his slave girl], and the city officials ordered them stripped and beaten with wooden rods. They were severely beaten, and then they were thrown into prison. The jailer was ordered to make sure they didn't escape. So the jailer put them into the inner dungeon and clamped their feet in the stocks.
Around midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the other prisoners were listening. Suddenly, there was a massive earthquake, and the prison was shaken to its foundations. All the doors immediately flew open, and the chains of every prisoner fell off! The jailer woke up to see the prison doors wide open. He assumed the prisoners had escaped, so he drew his sword to kill himself. But Paul shouted to him, "Stop! Don't kill yourself! We are all here!"
The jailer called for lights and ran to the dungeon and fell down trembling before Paul and Silas. Then he brought them out and asked, "Sirs, what must I do to be saved?"
Paul and Silas displayed such remarkable joy while enduring suffering and imprisonment that their jailer noticed! He knew to go to them when there was trouble. Their desire for the jailer not to harm himself not only saved his physical life but also opened the door for his family to join him in being saved eternally (Acts 16:30-34)! In the presence of such men of faith as Paul and Silas, the jailer knew the right question: "Sirs, what must I do to be saved?" May we live our lives with such faith and joy that others ask us this question, and we can lead them to do what the jailer and his household soon did.
Dear Father, may my life be noticed as a life of faith and joy in Jesus even in times of difficulty so others are drawn to him because of my example. Open my eyes to see and my heart to respond to the opportunities you give me to share my faith. May I share Jesus with gentleness and respect for those with whom I share my story. Give me the wisdom I need to hear the heart-cry of those I long to reach so that I can respond appropriately. I ask for this help in sharing Jesus with others, in his name and for his glory. Amen.
Unstoppable! is a one-year devotional guide through the book of Acts. Each devotional consists of a scripture passage, a reflection and a prayer. The reflection opens up the day's scripture and shows how it challenges one to live for Jesus.
Unstoppable! is written by Phil Ware.
Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright ©1996, 2004, 2007, 2013, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.
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