Monday, June 20, 2005
Somebody Has Got To Apologize
Somebody Has Got To Apologize!
Minister Tawaunna L. Jones
Acts 16:37 But Paul said unto them, they have beaten us openly un-condemned, being Romans, and have cast us into prison; and now they thrust us out privily? nay verily: but let them come themselves and fetch us out.
The book of Acts is the 44th book in the bible and it is believed to be written by Luke. Acts is often called the fifth Gospel. Luke, in his Gospel, shows what Christ began to do on earth; Acts shows what He continued to do by the Holy Spirit. The gospels tell of the crucified and risen Savior. Acts portrays Him as the ascended and exalted Lord and Leader. In the Gospels we hear Christ’s teachings. It is in the book of Acts that we see the effect of His teachings.
When we journey to the sixteenth chapter we find Paul and Silas on a missionary journey. They meet a damsel, a woman that was possessed by evil spirits. She was like Sister Cleo, remember her? A fortuneteller that dabbled in black magic, crystal balls, and tarot cards. This woman followed them, crying out that they were the servants of the most high God. This grieved Paul spirit, and he commanded the evil spirit to come out in the name of Jesus.The people she worked for heard about her being delivered. They saw that there their money maker was gone which made them mad.
They brought Paul and Silas to the magistrates, the law and accused them of teaching customs that were not lawful for them to receive. The magistrates charged them to be beaten and cast into prison. Paul and Silas did not do anything wrong, didn’t hurt anyone, they were doing what they were called to do and yet they were beaten and chained in prison. Somebody has got to apologize!They were thrown in jail for nothing!
In the prison, at midnight Paul and Silas prayed. Paul and Silas were singing praise songs and the others prisoners joined in; suddenly there was a great earthquake. The foundation of the prison was shaken, immediately all the doors were opened, and every one’s bands were loosed.Seeing that the prison doors were open, the guard pulled out his sword to kill himself. Paul cried out with a loud voice “Do not harm yourself, we are all here”. The guard fell down before Paul and Silas and said what must I do to be saved? The man got saved! He invited Paul and Silas to his house. He took them to his house and washed their backs where he had beaten them.
The same man that beat them washed their wounds in his house. God will use your enemies to bless you. He will set a table for you in the presence of your enemies.When it was day the magistrates sent a message to let Paul and Silas go. The jailer brought them the news. The magistrates sent a messenger to free them but they refused to go. It may have been believed that they had justly suffered the punishment of the law. The apostle refuses to leave in this manner.
This would have been a reproach to Christianity and a scandal to the Gospel. Paul wanted the magistrates to personally come and release them. This would stop the rumors that their God was the cause of the ills against the city.Paul said, let them come themselves and fetch us out! If the magistrates put us in here they have to come and let us out! It was not a point of honor that Paul stood stiffly upon a point of justice for God’s reputation. He considered that if he and Silas were released in a private manner, it might be taken for granted that they were guilty of some notorious offence.
If the magistrates have beaten us openly, let the magistrates come and openly apologize themselves! Somebody has got to apologize! Who ever did the mess, have to apologize personally. Do not send an underling to clean up your mistake. Don’t act as if you played no part in it. Confess your mistake and personally.