An earthquake with eternal blessings!

Scripture reading for May 27th:  Acts 16

Earthquakes have been in the news frequently.  A devastating earthquake killed thousands in Nepal and caused terrible hardship and suffering.   But the Book of Acts tells of an earthquake that had a liberating effect on a specific group of people.  This earthquake literally shook the chains off them and opened the hearts of a family for salvation!

Paul and Silas while on a missionary journey found themselves in stocks in the prison dungeon, beaten and bruised, after casting a demon from a slave girl in the Roman province of Philippi.  Instead of feeling sorry for themselves, they began to worship God.  “About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the other prisoners were listening to them.  Suddenly there was such a violent earthquake that the foundations of the prison were shaken.  At once all the doors flew open and everybody’s chains came loose.”  (Acts 16:25-26)

Worship has a liberating effect on the souls of those who practice it.  It also has a way of loosing people from chains of bondage!  In this case, all the prisoners experienced a terrible shaking that loosed them and opened the doors of the jail!

The jailer was fearful that all the prisoners would escape in the night, and drew his sword to kill himself.  Paul called out to stop him, letting him know that all were still there.  “The jailer called for lights, rushed in and fell trembling before Paul and Silas.  He then brought them out and asked, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?”  They replied, “Believe on the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved–you and your household.”  (Acts 16:29-31)  This earthquake opened the heart of the Roman jailer to recognize his need of salvation!  This was an earthquake that brought blessing!

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