Bible News: The Philippian Jailer


Image-Reflecting: Be A Witness


Saying the memory verse together at suppertime will imprint it on the hearts of your children forever.

Acts 16:31

Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved.


Sometimes the way we handle hardships is the most effective witness to others. When we are treated unjustly, when we get sick, or when we suffer setbacks, we can choose to blame God, to blame others, or to sulk and whine. Or, we can pray and sing and trust in God's care and promises. Paul and Silas certainly had plenty to complain about. Here they were doing God's work, and they got beaten and thrown into jail for their trouble. But they did not give up on God; they instead focused on prayer and worship. I wonder what they prayed for. Did they pray for deliverance from the prison? Or did they pray for the opportunity to witness? Maybe their response to the earthquake, gives us a clue. They did not run. Rather, they stayed and were able to bring salvation to the jailer and to his family.

When our children run into opposition, what kind of response do we teach them? Do we teach them to pray only for themselves? Or do we teach them to be an example for others and to pray for opportunities to witness? Your children learn from what they see more than what they hear-so show them God's way, and they will follow you and find Jesus.


How well did you listen to the story?

Q. Why were Paul and Silas put into prison?
A. Because they healed the slave girl and she could no longer tell fortunes.

Q. Who was Lydia?
A. A woman who became a believer and started a church in her house.

Q. What happened while they were praying and singing?
A. There was an earthquake; the doors to the prison opened and their chains fell off.

Q. Why was the jailer ready to kill himself?
A. Because he thought all the prisoners escaped.


This question is meant to help the children develop a biblical understanding of God, who He is and what He does. The "answer" is not meant for parents to read to their children. Rather its purpose is to assist parents in guiding the conversation to this biblical understanding. We encourage you to use an open Bible in this conversation, building biblical literacy and well as a biblical theology.


What must we do to be saved?


Can you answer the jailer's question? The Bible tells us to always be prepared to answer anyone who asks about the hope we have in Jesus Christ (1 Peter 3:15). What does it take to be prepared? Two things: 1) A ready testimony as to what it means to you personally that you belong to Jesus. This should be some kind of story from your own life that tells about how belonging to God has made a difference. Has God helped you with a problem? Shown you His love in a special way? Encouraged you when you were down? These kinds of stories are good table talk or bedtime talk with children. Get them used to looking for "God prints" in their lives will help them to have a testimony ready for sharing the greatest story—the story of Jesus. 2) An explanation of the gospel that is easy to share. Click on the link "Good News" on this website for one that you could learn.


Are you ready for the question, "What must I do to be saved?" This week tell your family one way that God makes a difference in your life and practice telling the good news about Jesus to your mom or dad. Then pray for God to give you an opportunity to be a witness.
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