Summary: The greatest thing that I believe a human being can experience is to be in a situation where it seems completely hopeless and doomed, yet God miraculously steps in and rescues you from it...
In this text we see that Peter has been placed in a seemingly hopeless situation. He has been arrested by Herod and placed in prison, awaiting his trial to take place after the passover. But in the midnight hour, when it seemed all hope was gone, God showed up & showed out, and made a "Miraculous Rescue".
I wonder today, how many of us that are here have been through or in a situation like Peter’s? (Elaborate)
The truth be told, I believe that many of us, at one time or another, have been where Peter was.
But what preacher, does it really mean to be rescued?
II. Body: 3 biblical meanings of the word "Rescue"...
A.) It means to be delivered..
- Peter was completely delivered of his situation & the danger involved in it in this text.
-Deliverance means to be "set free from".
- This means to be rescued means that whatever’s holding you down or in bondage can’t do it anymore. (Elaborate)
- If you’ve been set free, than you are "free indeed!"
- To be delivered means you don’t have to deal with the bondage of that issue anymore!
B.) It means to be "loosed from"...
- In the text, Peter was loosed from his chains and his shackles, in a way that could only be done by God.
- When God rescues you, he looses you from whatever chains are binding you, he not only frees you, but he looses you completely!
- Peter didn’t take any part of his shackles or chains with him, he left them behind!
- When God looses you, you need to leave the baggage behind! Don’t carry it with you!! (Elaborate.)
C.) It means to "escape from harm or danger"...
- Peter escaped from prison, and the reason why he escaped was because there was no other way out!
- When God rescues you, it’s an escape because there’s no way out!
- Sometimes God will put you in situations like that, just so that he & he alone can recue you, and so that you know that it was nobody but the Lord that rescued you!
- Talk about how God is like the great magician of old, Houdini, but only better!!
III. Preach The Text:
- Set up story and scenario of the text.
- Vs. 4: He was gaurded by 16 soldiers! WoW!
- Vs. 5: We need to stop talking about eachother 7 earnestly pray for one another!
- Vs. 6: This was the trap!
- Vs. 7-9: Not only did the shackles miraculously fall off his wrists, but he was able to get fully dressed! All right in front of all these gaurds!!!
- Vs.10: How many doors has God just "opened wide" for you?.. You didn’t have to push, turn a knob, or pry, but the door just flung open, and YOU WALKED RIGHT THROUGH IT!!!
- Vs. 11:
Encourage & exhort the people of God that he is a rescuer & a deliverer! And that no matter what you’re going through, just hold on, and hold out, and in HIS time God will SURELY bring you out!!!
-Recap points that were major.