Chapter 46 The Jesus Code: 52 Scripture Questions Every Believer Should Answer by O.S. Hawkins.
This week’s question: “What must I do to be saved?” (Acts 16.30).
As Hawkins reminds us this is “arguably the most pointed question in the entire Bible.” The question was asked by a jailer in the city of Philippi.
To fully understand why a pagan jailer would ask such a question, we need to look at the passage in context.
Paul and Silas had been arrested for preaching and for casting a demon out of a slave girl. Acts 16:
22 Then the multitude rose up together against them; and the magistrates tore off their clothes and commanded them to be beaten with rods. 23 And when they had laid many stripes on them, they threw them into prison, commanding the jailer to keep them securely. 24 Having received such a charge, he put them into the inner prison and fastened their feet in the stocks.
They had just been beaten and now were put into stocks, a device intended to cause great pain and cramping in the muscles. But instead of focusing on their own pain and discomfort, Paul and Silas began singing praises to God. Can you imagine what the guards and the other prisoners were thinking?
25 But at midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the prisoners were listening to them. 26 Suddenly there was a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison were shaken; and immediately all the doors were opened and everyone’s chains were loosed. 27 And the keeper of the prison, awaking from sleep and seeing the prison doors open, supposing the prisoners had fled, drew his sword and was about to kill himself. 28 But Paul called with a loud voice, saying, “Do yourself no harm, for we are all here.”
I don’t know who said it first, but there is no time in life when we have a greater opportunity to witness to the power of God in us than we do when life is hard. It’s easy to proclaim our faith when everything is going well, but when times are tough, people start to wonder what really is different about us!
How do you and I respond during the midnight times in our lives? Do we respond with singing and praises to God or do we respond with “why me” and “it’s not fair”? Possibly something of a mixture, but why should we learn to respond like Paul and Silas?
As Hawkins explains, praising Him in the midst of trouble, singing a song in the night, affects three areas of our lives: Continue reading