Paul and Silas Praise God in a Difficult Situation

Acts 16:16-40
Cast:  1 judge, 2 soldiers, Paul, Silas, guard, narrator, person 1 from crowd, person 2 from crowd, crowd.
At Rise:  Paul and Silas are standing before the judge, with the crowd of people surrounding them.

Crowd:  Arrest these men!  Arrest these men!

Judge: Order!  Order!

Crowd:  Arrest these men!  Arrest these men!

Judge: What is the charge?

Crowd:  Arrest these men!  Arrest these men!

Judge:  What have they done?

Crowd:  Arrest these men!  Arrest these men!

Person 1 from Crowd:  They are telling people about Jesus.

Person 2 from Crowd:  And they are doing things that are against our Roman law.

Crowd:  Arrest these men!  Arrest these men!

Judge: Hummmmmmmm...

Crowd:  Arrest these men!  Arrest these men!

Judge:  Throw Paul and Silas in jail!

(Soldiers take Paul and Silas to jail.)

Guard:  Who do we have here?

Soldier 1:  Prisoners.

Soldier 2:  Lock them up and see they don't escape.  Do you understand?

Guard:  Yes, sir!  I'll keep them safe.

(Paul and Silas sit against a wall.)

Narrator:  The guard unlocked the big door of the jail, put Saul and Silas in the dark, smelly room with no windows.  Their arms were chained, and the guard put their feet in leg irons locked around their ankles so they couldn’t walk.  He checked the lock on the big door again and then left.  Paul and Silas were left alone completely in the dark.  It was cold and damp -- a horrible place.  Minutes went by.  Hours went by.  Then it was almost midnight.

Paul:  Silas, are you asleep?

Silas:  Are you kidding, Paul?  I’m too cold.

Paul:  I can't sleep either.

Silas:  Are you scared?

Paul:  No.  God never sleeps.  I know He's watching over us.  Let’s pray.  Dear God, we don’t know why we are in this difficult situation but we’re going to trust in You.  Thank you being with us even here in awful place. Amen.

Silas:  I know what else might help.

Paul:  What?

Silas:  Let's sing. 

Paul:  I don't sing very well.

Silas:  That's okay.  God doesn't care how it sounds.  He just likes us to sing praises to Him.

(Paul and Silas silently sing while the narrator speaks.  It is obvious from their expressions they are singing songs of joy and praise.)

Narrator:  So, Paul and Silas began to sing songs of praise to God.  They sang and sang and sang. 

Silas:  WHAT’S THAT?

Paul:  I don't know. 

Silas:  The ground is moving!

Paul:  And look at the prison walls!  They are shaking!

Silas:  It’s an earthquake!  This whole building is going to topple on and we’ll be buried under the rubble.

Paul (standing):  My leg irons just fell off!  I can walk now.

Silas (standing):  My chains are off, too! And our prison cell door is open!

Paul:  Look!  All the doors have opened and all the prisoners are loose!

Narrator:  Somehow the guard had slept through the entire ordeal!  When he awoke and saw the doors swinging on their hinges, he figured all the prisoners had escaped.  He was SO scared!

Paul:  Guard, don’t be afraid!  We’re all here.  No one tried to escape.

Narrator:  Still trembling, the guard ran over to Paul and Silas. 

Guard (with hands on hips):  How did this happen?

Paul:  We prayed and sang praises to our God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.  He caused the earthquake and our chains to fall off.  He’s the One who opened the doors.  He is the Almighty One.  We trust in Jesus.  He hears and answers the prayers of those who believe in Him and call on Him.

Guard:  I want to believe.  What must I do to follow Him?

Silas:  You must ask Him to forgive your sins and come to live in your heart.  Believe on the Lord Jesus and you will be saved.

Narrator:  Paul and Silas told the guard in detail about Jesus and he was SO happy!  The next day the guard was told to release the men from jail.  Paul and Silas learned that even in difficult situations, they could praise God and help others learn about Jesus, too!