Peter Escapes From Prison
Great Escapes in the Bible
There are a lot of great escapes found in the Bible, here are a few and their significance (who, what happened, what was accomplished, application):
Jacob (Genesis 31:1-55)
1. Left his father-in-law, Laban, after almost 20 years of service.
2, Allowed Jacob to return home for Isaac’s death and for reconciliation with Esau, his brother.
3. A time away from home often puts the really important things into perspective.
Moses (Exodus 2:11-15)
1. Fled Egypt after killing an Egyptian in defense of a fellow Israelite.
2. Saved his own life and began another part of God’s training.
3. God fits even our mistakes into his plan.
Israelites (Exodus 12:28-42)
1. Escaped Egypt after 430 years, most of that time in slavery.
2. God confirmed his choice of Abraham’s descendants.
3. God will not forget his promises.
Spies (Joshua 2:1-24)
1. Escaped searchers in Jericho by hiding in Rahab’s house.
2. Prepared the destruction of Jericho and preserved Rahab, who would become one of David’s ancestors – as well as an ancestor of Jesus.
3. God’s plan weaves lives together in a pattern beyond our understanding.
Ehud (Judges 3:15-30)
1. Assissinated the Moabite King Eglon, but escaped undetected.
2. Broke the control of Moab over Israel and began 80 years of peace.
3. Punishments by God are often swift and deadly.
Samson (Judges 16:1-3)
1. Escaped a locked city by ripping the gates from their hinges.
2. Merely postponed Samson’s self-destruction because of his lack of self-control.
3. Without dependence on God and his guidance, even great ability is wasted.
Elijah (1 Kings 19:1-18)
1. Fled into the desert out of fear of Queen Jezebel.
2. Preserved Elijah’s life, but also displayed his human weakness.
3. Even at moments of real success, our personal weaknesses are our greatest challenges.
Saul (Paul) (Acts 9:23-25) Today's Scripture Reading!
1. Lowered over the wall in a basket to get out of Damascus.
2. Saved this new Christian for great service to God.
3. God has a purpose for every life, which leads to a real adventure for those willing to cooperate.
Peter (Acts 12:1-11)
1. Freed from prison by an angel.
2. Saved Peter for God’s further plans for his life.
3. God can use extraordinary means to carry out his plan – often when we least expect it.
Paul and Silas (Acts 16:22-40)
1. Chains loosened and doors opened by an earthquake, but they chose not to leave the prison.
2. Pointed out the powerlessness of humans before God.
3. When our dependence and attention are focused on God rather than our problems, he is able to offer help in unexpected ways.
Chart: Life Application Study Bible, Zondervan Press, NIV
TODAY'S SCRIPTURE READING
1 Meanwhile, Saul was still breathing out murderous threats against the Lord’s disciples. He went to the high priest 2 and asked him for letters to the synagogues in Damascus, so that if he found any there who belonged to the Way, whether men or women, he might take them as prisoners to Jerusalem. 3 As he neared Damascus on his journey, suddenly a light from heaven flashed around him. 4 He fell to the ground and heard a voice say to him, “Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me?”
5 “Who are you, Lord?” Saul asked.
“I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting,” he replied. 6 “Now get up and go into the city, and you will be told what you must do.”
7 The men traveling with Saul stood there speechless; they heard the sound but did not see anyone. 8 Saul got up from the ground, but when he opened his eyes he could see nothing. So they led him by the hand into Damascus. 9 For three days he was blind, and did not eat or drink anything.
10 In Damascus there was a disciple named Ananias. The Lord called to him in a vision, “Ananias!”
“Yes, Lord,” he answered.
11 The Lord told him, “Go to the house of Judas on Straight Street and ask for a man from Tarsus named Saul, for he is praying. 12 In a vision he has seen a man named Ananias come and place his hands on him to restore his sight.”
13 “Lord,” Ananias answered, “I have heard many reports about this man and all the harm he has done to your holy people in Jerusalem. 14 And he has come here with authority from the chief priests to arrest all who call on your name.”
15 But the Lord said to Ananias, “Go! This man is my chosen instrument to proclaim my name to the Gentiles and their kings and to the people of Israel. 16 I will show him how much he must suffer for my name.”
17 Then Ananias went to the house and entered it. Placing his hands on Saul, he said, “Brother Saul, the Lord—Jesus, who appeared to you on the road as you were coming here—has sent me so that you may see again and be filled with the Holy Spirit.” 18 Immediately, something like scales fell from Saul’s eyes, and he could see again. He got up and was baptized, 19 and after taking some food, he regained his strength.
Saul in Damascus and Jerusalem
Saul spent several days with the disciples in Damascus. 20 At once he began to preach in the synagogues that Jesus is the Son of God. 21 All those who heard him were astonished and asked, “Isn’t he the man who raised havoc in Jerusalem among those who call on this name? And hasn’t he come here to take them as prisoners to the chief priests?” 22 Yet Saul grew more and more powerful and baffled the Jews living in Damascus by proving that Jesus is the Messiah.
23 After many days had gone by, there was a conspiracy among the Jews to kill him, 24 but Saul learned of their plan. Day and night they kept close watch on the city gates in order to kill him. 25 But his followers took him by night and lowered him in a basket through an opening in the wall.
26 When he came to Jerusalem, he tried to join the disciples, but they were all afraid of him, not believing that he really was a disciple. 27 But Barnabas took him and brought him to the apostles. He told them how Saul on his journey had seen the Lord and that the Lord had spoken to him, and how in Damascus he had preached fearlessly in the name of Jesus. 28 So Saul stayed with them and moved about freely in Jerusalem, speaking boldly in the name of the Lord. 29 He talked and debated with the Hellenistic Jews,[a] but they tried to kill him. 30 When the believers learned of this, they took him down to Caesarea and sent him off to Tarsus.
31 Then the church throughout Judea, Galilee and Samaria enjoyed a time of peace and was strengthened. Living in the fear of the Lord and encouraged by the Holy Spirit, it increased in numbers.
Wednesday's with Beth Moore