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What Must i Do to Be Saved

What Must i Do to Be Saved

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Published by GLENN DALE PEASE
BY REV. THOMAS RENNELL, B.D.


ACTS xvi. 30.
What must I do to be saved?
BY REV. THOMAS RENNELL, B.D.


ACTS xvi. 30.
What must I do to be saved?

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Published by: GLENN DALE PEASE on Sep 27, 2013
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08/23/2014

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WHAT MUST I DO TO BE SAVED?BY REV. THOMAS REELL, B.D.ACTS xvi. 30.What must I do to be saved?SUCH was the question put by the trembling jailer to Paul and Silas, when amazed by thedouble miracle which was wrought before hiseyes. The transaction is altogether a very remarkable one. The great apostle and his companion during their stay at the city of Philippi,had cast out from a young damsel an evil spiritof divination. This was not done in oppositionto the will of the young woman, but as it appearsat her own urgent and repeated request, for weread that " she followed Paul and us, and cried,saying, these men are the servants of the MostHigh God, which shew unto us the way of salvation. And this she did many days." Theapostle feeling compassion for the darkness anderror of a heart so struggling for the kingdom of God, relieved her from the illusion under whichshe laboured. " Paul being grieved, turned andSERMO XXVII. 339said to the spirit, I command thee in the nameof Jesus Christ, come out of her, and he cameout the same hour." Her masters, however, enraged hy the loss of the profitable trade whichthis demoniacal possession of their servant, hadenabled them to pursue ; dragged Paul and Silasbefore the magistrates, who having laid manystripes upon them, cast them into prison, with anespecial charge to the jailer, to keep them safely.
 
Upon this treatment we have first to observe,that it was to the highest degree oppressive andunjust. Philippi was a Roman colony, and wassubject of course to all the laws and customs of ancient Rome. ow Paul and Silas themselveswere Roman citizens, whose peculiar privilege itwas, not to suffer scourging or imprisonmentwithout a regular trial and condemnation. Wefind, indeed, that when it was subsequently reported to the magistrates that they were Romans,they feared, and came and besought the apostlesto depart peaceably out of the city. Undersuch circumstances as these, can we wonder thatthe Providence of God, should be especially exerted for their deliverance. Accordingly " atmidnight while Paul and Silas prayed and sangpraises unto God, suddenly there was a greatearthquake, so that the foundations of the prisonwere shaken, and immediately all the doors wereopened, and every one s bands were loosed.z 2340 SERMO XXVII.And the keeper of the prison awakening out of his sleep, and seeing the prison doors open, hedrew out his sword and would have killed himself, supposing that the prisoners had been fled.But Paul cried with aloud voice, saying, Do thyself no harm, for we are all here." Here then wasa double miracle. It was a natural miracle, thatthe foundations of the prison should be shaken,its doors opened, and the chains of the prisonersloosed ; it was a moral miracle, that with such anopportunity of instant escape, they should allremain in the prison. This was, indeed, enoughto strike the heart of the jailer, with a convic
 
tion at once sudden and irresistible. In such anevent the arm of God was visible, at once, in itsmercy, and its power, and by this double miracledid it declare the insulted apostles, to be itsagents and its ministers. Before Paul and Silas,therefore, the trembling jailer " fell down, andbrought them out, and said, Sirs, what must I doto be saved ?" It could not be any temporal consequences that this man dreaded ; for his prisoners were all safe under his care. It was notthe anger of the magistrates which he feared, butit was the anger of God. He was not a Jew, wemust remember, but a Heathen ; of the Almighty, therefore, he had no distinct or certainnotion ; his mind was debased by superstition,or distracted by idolatry ; and all that he couldSERMO XXVII. 341see or know of God, was rather in terror than inlove. The earthquake which he had just witnessed, had spoken in the language of just alarmto his soul. There is a something, indeed, evenin the ordinary convulsions of the natural world,which seems to indicate the presence of an of fended God. " The earth trembled and quaked,the very foundations also of the hills shook andwere removed, because he was wroth." o manI believe was ever yet an Atheist in a thunderstorm ; not from the sense of immediate danger,but from the fear of an immediate retribution ;a fear which these awful scenes so uniformly generate. O ! that the impressions which theycreate could but pass into ^a lasting principle of repentance, and of amendment in their souls !If then even in the most hardened minds, thesewars of the elements create a moral and a justalarm ; how much more must they have pene

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