By Lisa Wilmore
“…The jailer woke up, and when he saw the prison doors open, he drew his sword and was about to kill himself because he thought the prisoners had escaped. But Paul shouted, “Don’t harm yourself! We are all here!”
The jailer called for lights, rushed in and fell trembling before Paul and Silas. He then brought them out and asked, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved? They replied, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved-you and your household. Then they spoke the word of the Lord to him and all the others in his house. At that hour of the night the jailer took them and washed their wounds; then immediately he and all his household were baptized. The jailer brought them into his house and set a meal before them; he was filled with joy because he had come to believe in God-he and his whole household. (Acts 16:27-34 NIV).
First, the title from last week’s message was “Suicide is not an option”. Interestingly, our message this week is a continuation of the subject, “suicide”. There have been many thoughts and considerations as I encountered events as well as Bible readings and studies that I really would have liked to share with you this week; however, I am once again compelled to share my heart felt concern about suicide and its effects on the American people.
Additionally, in last week’s article, the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention research revealed that “48,344 Americans died by suicide which is the leading cause of death for ages 10-34 and fourth leading cause of death for ages 35-54.” Of course, this data is truly alarming but serves as a revelation that we have suicidal problems in our nation.
Next, our aforementioned scripture reading has probably been preached and/or read more than any other biblical text in reference to the sincerity of prayer and God’s response to it. Yet, this particular biblical account illuminates the fact that after Paul and Silas prayed, the prison doors were open and a certain jailer was ready to take his life because he thought the prisoners had escaped. As you read this specific account, you will find that the jailer was filled with joy because he had come to believe in God-he and his household (Read Acts 16).
Lastly, if the thoughts of suicide prevail in your mind just know that your joy is found in Jesus. The jailer exited from a suicidal thought to joy! You can exit from suicidal thoughts, also. Give Jesus a chance to bring joy and peace to your life. Do as the jailer did, fall before Him and ask, “What must I do to be saved.”