I can’t think of Jailhouse Rock without thinking of Elvis’ song by that name. I’ve visited a few prisoners and the jailhouse is not a “rockin place” in a good sense at all. It is a pretty dark place. I’ve never been a prisoner so I don’t relate to what the prisoners could be feeling when inside. I would think there is a sense of shame and remorse because they are usually there because of something they did or maybe something they didn’t do.
Paul and Silas were put in jail mainly because they rescued a young girl from being possessed by an evil spirit that helped her predict the future. Her “owners” made lots of money off of her ability. Paul and Silas saw that she was being used and they simply asked the evil spirit in her to leave. It did and there went the moneymaking opportunities for her owners. They went to court and accused Paul & Silas of stirring up the crowds against the Roman government. This was a false accusation, but since they were outsiders, they were beaten and thrown in jail and told to stop preaching and teaching. They were put into the inner cell and their feet in stocks. Check this out…25 About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing songs to God as the other prisoners listened. 26 Suddenly, there was a strong earthquake that shook the foundation of the jail. Then all the doors of the jail broke open, and all the prisoners were freed from their chains. 27 The jailer woke up and saw that the jail doors were open. Thinking that the prisoners had already escaped, he got his sword and was about to kill himself. 28 But Paul shouted, “Don’t hurt yourself! We are all here.” 29 The jailer told someone to bring a light. Then he ran inside and, shaking with fear, fell down before Paul and Silas. 30 He brought them outside and said, “Men, what must I do to be saved?” 31 They said to him, “Believe in the Lord Jesus and you will be saved—you and all the people in your house.” 32 So Paul and Silas told the message of the Lord to the jailer and all the people in his house. 33 At that hour of the night the jailer took Paul and Silas and washed their wounds. Then he and all his people were baptized immediately. 34 After this the jailer took Paul and Silas home and gave them food. He and his family were very happy because they now believed in God. (Acts 16:25-34 NIV)
I love Paul and Silas’ spirit of following the Lord wherever they are and whatever situation they find themselves in. I’m not sure what it’s like to be in an earthquake, but I didn’t think chains and leg-irons would just come off. I believe that the earthquake was a diversion as the angel of the Lord loosed their chains and set them free so they could continue their witness.
I love the scene at the jailers house where the guy who was once in charge of their captivity was set free himself from sin and turned to the Lord! The Lord’s will was for his salvation as well as his family. The Lord used the faithfulness of Paul and Silas to “shake up” a bunch of people in Philippi.
I want to continue to be faithful following the Lord in good times and tough times that He is honored and glorified by my choices. I want to follow Him, sing songs to Him and about Him. I want to spend the rest of my days on earth honoring Him – no matter where I find myself. I don’t plan on going to jail as a resident anytime soon, but if God calls me – I want to follow Him wherever.Pressing On! Dwayne