Tag Archives: Acts 16

Monday through Friday with People of Faith: Day 252/260: The Philippian Jailer

Read Acts 16:25-34

The Urgency Of Salvation

“What must I do to be saved?” (Acts 16:30). Is there a more important question when it comes to spiritual matters? Is there a more important question at all? The Philippian jailer may not have even understood how important that question was when he asked it.

Paul and Silas told the jailer the first step on the path to salvation: “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved, you and your household” (Acts 16:31). Why didn’t these gospel preachers tell the jailer about repentance? What about the good confession? Why not command him to be immersed?

The answer to these questions is quite simple: he wasn’t ready to hear those things. He had to learn about Jesus first. He had to learn what Jesus had accomplished for him at the cross. He had to come to a knowledge of the Savior before he could act on anything else. Once he was told about the Lord, Paul and Silas proceeded to give him further instructions. How do we know this?

Luke tells us about his repentance! “And he took them the same hour of the night and washed their stripes” (Acts 16:33). The jailer repented of the torture he had inflicted upon these innocent men by treating their wounds.

Luke tells us also about his immersion, and the urgency of it! “And immediately he and all his family were baptized” (Acts 16:33). Why were they baptized “immediately”? Why not set up an appointment for the next Sunday? The answer to this is also simple: the jailer was not promised a “next Sunday.”

No one knows how much time they have left in this life. If you believe what you have read in the Bible and you trust the Lord to do what He has promised, obey Him without delay! Repent and be baptized to have your sins forgiven forever and live a life of service for the Lord!

Monday through Friday with People of Faith: Day 251/260: Lydia

Read Acts 16:11-15

What Kind Of Heart Do You Have?

When Paul arrived in Philippi, he went to the riverside on the Sabbath Day to meet with some women. In cities in which there were not ten Jewish men, a synagogue was not erected. Instead, those of the faith met at the river for prayer. Lydia was one of those people.

Luke tells us that Lydia “was a seller of purple from the city of Thyatira” (Acts 16:14). Her occupation indicated that she was likely a wealthy woman, as purple was a very expensive dye used in fabrics in the first century. The gospel truly is for all people: male and female, rich and poor. All it takes is an honest heart willing to obey in faith, and that is exactly what Lydia had.

She was already a worshiper of God, but when she heard the gospel, Luke says, “The Lord opened her heart to heed the things spoken by Paul” (Acts 16:14). This is the type of person Jesus was talking about in Luke 8, as he explained the parable of the sower. “But the ones that fell on the good ground are those who, having heard the word with a noble and good heart, keep it and bear fruit with patience” (Luke 8:15). Sometimes it may take a person a while to allow themselves to believe, but if they possess that “honest and good heart” and the teacher is “longsuffering” (2 Timothy 4:2), they will get there.

There are others, though, like Lydia, who will come to an understanding and acceptance of the truth sooner. When she heard the truth, she obeyed the truth! Luke records that “she and her household were baptized” (Acts 16:15).

Do you have this type of heart? Or have you hardened yourself against the gospel because of bad experiences in the past? I encourage you to allow God to teach you through His Word and through His servants in the Lord’s church. Study with them. Learn what He requires of you, and in humility submit to His commands.

Monday through Friday with People of Faith: Day 250/260: Timothy

Read Acts 16:1-5; 2 Timothy 4:1-5

Preach The Word

Paul teamed up with several different people during his evangelistic tours. Some of the more prominent names were Barnabas, Silas, and Luke. The young preacher Timothy was also a close companion of the apostle, and Paul trusted him so much that he left Timothy in Ephesus to strengthen the church there.

Timothy was the recipient of two letters from Paul. Near the end of the second letter, Paul wrote these words: “Preach the word! Be ready in season and out of season. Convince, rebuke, exhort, with all longsuffering and teaching” (2 Timothy 4:2).

If a preacher isn’t preaching the Word of God, is he even preaching at all? It is the Word that tells us about Jesus, and it is only Jesus that can save us from our sins. In the words of Peter, “Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved” (Acts 4:12). We must bring people to Jesus because only Jesus can save them.

Of the phrase, “be ready (‘instant’ [KJV], ‘urgent’ [ASV]) in season and out of season,” Marshall Keeble said something along these lines, “Preach it when they wanna hear it, and preach it when they don’t!” There are times, as Paul explains in 1 Timothy 4:3, that men “will not endure sound doctrine” because it makes them uncomfortable. And yet, it is only sound doctrine that can lead a person to the truth. False teaching always falls short.

Paul then uses three words that show different aspects of sound doctrine: “Convince, rebuke, exhort.” There are times a man must be convinced of the truth. There are times he must be rebuked of sin. And there are times he must be exhorted or encouraged to continue doing the right thing.

Finally, Paul tells Timothy to be patient with those who are learning. “Preach…with all longsuffering and teaching.” Don’t give up too soon. Keep doing the right thing, and let the gospel do its work.

Paul in Philippi (Acts 16:11-34)

Paul in Philippi Acts 16

Acts 16:11-34

I. Lydia

    A. At the riverside (Acts 16:11-13)
    B. Lydia (Acts 16:14-15)

      1. A successful businesswoman
      2. Religious
      3. Obedient

II. Trouble

    A. The possessed slave girl (Acts 16:16-18)
    B. The loss of profits (Acts 16:19-24)
    C. Paul and Silas in prison (Acts 16:25-26; Philippians 4:4)

III. The jailer

    A. His concern for his life (Acts 16:27-28)
    B. His concern for his soul (Acts 16:29-30)
    C. Paul’s instruction (Acts 16:31-32)
    D. The jailer’s obedience (Acts 16:33-34)

Read the New Testament in a year, one chapter a day, five days a week

Day 40/260: Read Acts 16

How quick are you to obey when you learn what the Word of God says? How urgent are eternal matters to you?

When Paul and Silas taught the jailer in Philippi, he wasted no time in obeying the message. These men had been whipped and imprisoned, but instead of bemoaning the negatives of their current circumstances, they praised God. “But at midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the prisoners were listening to them.”

An earthquake hit, causing all the doors to open and all the chains to fall from the prisoners’ hands. The jailer knew his punishment would be severe and was ready to take his own life, but Paul prevented him, saying all the inmates were accounted for.

The jailer then asked, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” Paul and Silas “spoke the word of the Lord to him and to all who were in his house. And he took them the same hour of the night and washed their stripes. And immediately he and all his family were baptized.”

The jailer understood the urgency of the gospel. Have we lost that sense of urgency today? Souls are at stake; may we urgently teach others to obey God.

Memory (Recite to a friend without looking)

Acts 16:33. And he took them the same hour of the night and washed their stripes. And immediately he and all his family were baptized.


Pray for opportunities to teach others the gospel, showing them the urgency of the good news.

Obedience Requires Humility

Paul, Silas, and their fellow workers in the Lord encountered a great number of people on their missionary journey. Some of those people received their teachings, while others rejected the message of God. When they arrived in Philippi, the missionaries went to the riverside where a group of spiritually-minded women were praying on the Sabbath.

One of those women was named Lydia. As Paul taught the truth of Jesus Christ, Lydia’s heart was opened and she heeded his words. “And when she and her household were baptized, she begged us, saying, ‘If you have judged me to be faithful to the Lord, come to my house and stay.’ So she persuaded us” (Acts 16:15).

What a precious response to the Word of God. Luke does not record any arguing over the doctrine. Lydia did not make excuses for her shortcomings, nor did she “agree to disagree” with what Paul taught. She heard, she believed, and she was baptized.

How do you feel when you find out you have been wrong about something? Perhaps your boss showed you a more efficient way to do your job. Do you resist the change just because you have been doing it your way for years? Or do you recognize that there is a better way, and adjust accordingly?

Spiritually speaking, the new covenant of Jesus is “a better covenant” than the old Law of Moses, offering “a better hope” (Hebrews 7:19,22; 8:6). Christianity is better than any other religion, because it is the only path to salvation. Jesus Christ, and only Jesus Christ, is “the way, the truth, and the life.” He said, “No one comes to the Father except through Me” (John 14:6).

The church must follow the Word of God, and only the Word of God. No denominational creeds, no catechisms, nothing more and nothing less than the inspired Word. It is not arrogance, but rather humility, to recognize that we cannot improve upon His revelation. The Father said of Jesus, “This is My beloved Son. Hear Him!” (Luke 9:35).