25 About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the other prisoners were listening to them. 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. 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. 28 But Paul shouted, “Don’t harm yourself! We are all here!” 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. 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.
I get such a sense of “no time to lose” when I read this well-known account. The incredible miracle of the earthquake, doors opening, chains simply falling can be a distraction to the main event – the salvation of the jailer and his family. Paul and Silas did not take the chance to make a run for it, rather they saw the moment for the incredible opportunity it was.
The truth of the gospel transformed a man full of fear to a man full of joy.
Is my joy in knowing I am saved by faith in Jesus? I can imagine the jailer’s joy overflowing to those around as for years to come he shared this amazing event and he and his family’s salvation. Is God’s love and grace flowing out of me? Is it in my service like the jailer showed to Paul and Silas (v33-34), is it in my forgiveness to others rather than holding a grudge, is it in my praise of God even when times are dark and disappointing?
Thank you Lord that by you Holy Spirit you shine through in my life. Transform my fears to joy in you. Amen
Written by Claire Moore