Join us as we read the scriptures and a daily devotion written by Don Crisp. We pray these messages will bless us all at this time.
Acts chapter 16 v 19-26
Categories: Don’s Daily Devotions
Acts chapter 16 v 19-26:
V19: The men who have exploited the slave girl are furious – their profits have gone. They seize Paul and Silas, drag them before the city magistrates – in this Roman colony the marketplace also functions, as in Rome itself, as the Forum where the authorities sit to hear cases brought before them.
V20-21: They bring trumped up charges of teaching rebellion against Rome – their real grievance would presumably make little impact upon the magistrates. So, they bring a charge no judge answerable to Rome would dare ignore. Just so, with Jesus before Pilate, of course.
V22: No trial really takes place, mob antagonism stirs up the authorities to have Paul and Silas beaten with rods on their bare backs – A Roman punishment as distinct from a Jewish one – Paul in 2 Corinthians 11 v24-25 speaks of both. This was a severe beating, under which some actually died.
V23: They are then thrown into prison, and the jailer is charged to keep them safe. Any failure in this charge would be severely punished, even with his own death – so, his reaction in v27.
V24: He locks them in the inmost cell in the whole prison, and also sets their feet in the stocks – a brutal and painful process in itself.
V25: How do Paul and Silas react? They pray and sing praises to God. What a tremendous response of faith, living out the truth of Matthew 5 v 11-12, and what a testimony to the other prisoners, who hear them. How would we have reacted, I wonder?
V26: And God acts in Sovereign power and grace. There is a sudden earthquake – not unknown in that region, but the timing makes it quite clear this is indeed God’s intervention, for His servants. The very foundations of the prison are shaken, and the “bonds” – chains attached to the wall, securing the prisoners’ wrists – of ALL the prisoners fall off.