Summary: To establish that true salvation is through a genuine faith and willing obedience to the word of God. This lesson deals with the false notion that the jailer and his house was saved by belief only, and no other act of obedience.
1. The Question is Personal
2. The Question is Participative
3. The Question is Profitable
1. In our lesson today we will be discussing, a man who asked a very important question. A question that had eternal implications! This is a question that all must ask if they like him are unaware of God’s terms of salvation. Not everyone however will receive the answer, in the same spirit in which he and his entire family did. We are not talking about some man's theology! Or someone’s philosophy! We are talking about things, which are eternal, and divinely ordained. Many have asked this question, but not all have received the same answer. In every case where one inquired of God's terms of salvation, of the man of God, the Lord requires his servants to give the same answer and assistance to the inquirer’s search for salivation. The man of God answered: "Believe on the Lord Jesus..." I know this response requires further explanation.
2. First of all, this question is personal. The jailer asked only for himself: "what must I do to be saved?" He did not ask for his mother, daddy, wife or children. He desired to be saved himself. Perhaps fear generated this question. Fear for his life. But, somehow he knew these men could give him the answer he needed. We need to understand this for ourselves; for each of us must stand before the judgment seat of Christ. Most important however, we cannot help others find the way, if we don’t know it first ourselves. It is important to find out what we must do, first do it, and then instruct others how to obey God.
3. Secondly, this question is participative in nature. "What must I DO?" It implies participation on the part of the jailer. It is active in response and not passive. One must do something - to be saved. Unlike the Universalist which says, "Ye need not do anything – it has all been done for you." Or like the Calvinist which says, "You can't do anything if you are not one of His elect." But, Paul told the man to have faith in Jesus, and he could be saved he and his entire house. God desires all to be saved and come to the knowledge of the truth. But each must do something to be saved and what is required is taught in this act of true conversion - by faith in Christ Jesus. We will see from this example, what God requires of us all, to be saved.
4. Lastly, this question is profitable. Salvation was the desired end of his question. He was not trying to deceive, or attempting to distract them from escaping that night. He truly wanted to be saved. Like so many today! If one would ask this same question, would the answer be the same? I real think not. However, God's terms of pardon and salvation have not changed since this man's conversion! He is the "same yesterday, today and forever." In the same hour of the night - this man's life was saved both from suicide and sin, by these men of God. He and his entire household heard, believed and obeyed the Gospel! I would today, that everyone here today would do the same! Let’s consider our first point, the question is personal.