James Martyred and Peter Jailed

12 About that time King Herod violently attacked some who belonged to the church, and he executed James,(A) John’s brother, with the sword. When he saw that it pleased the Jews, he proceeded to arrest Peter too, during the Festival of Unleavened Bread.(B) After the arrest, he put him in prison and assigned four squads of four soldiers each to guard him, intending to bring him out to the people after the Passover. So Peter was kept in prison, but the church was praying fervently to God for him.

Peter Rescued

When Herod was about to bring him out for trial, that very night Peter, bound with two chains, was sleeping between two soldiers, while the sentries in front of the door guarded the prison. Suddenly an angel of the Lord(C) appeared, and a light shone in the cell. Striking Peter on the side, he woke him up and said, “Quick, get up!” And the chains fell off his wrists.(D) “Get dressed,” the angel told him, “and put on your sandals.” And he did. “Wrap your cloak around you,” he told him, “and follow me.” So he went out and followed, and he did not know that what the angel did was really happening, but he thought he was seeing a vision.(E) 10 After they passed the first and second guards, they came to the iron gate that leads into the city, which opened to them by itself. They went outside and passed one street, and suddenly the angel left him.(F)

11 When Peter came to himself, he said, “Now I know for certain that the Lord has sent his angel and rescued me from Herod’s grasp and from all that the Jewish people expected.”(G) 12 As soon as he realized this, he went to the house of Mary, the mother of John who was called Mark,(H) where many had assembled and were praying. 13 He knocked at the door of the outer gate, and a servant named Rhoda came to answer. 14 She recognized Peter’s voice, and because of her joy, she did not open the gate but ran in and announced that Peter was standing at the outer gate.

15 “You’re out of your mind!” they told her. But she kept insisting that it was true, and they said, “It’s his angel.”(I) 16 Peter, however, kept on knocking, and when they opened the door and saw him, they were amazed.

17 Motioning to them with his hand(J) to be silent, he described to them how the Lord had brought him out of the prison. “Tell these things to James(K) and the brothers,” he said, and he left and went to another place.

18 At daylight, there was a great commotion among the soldiers as to what had become of Peter. 19 After Herod had searched and did not find him, he interrogated the guards and ordered their execution. Then Herod went down from Judea to Caesarea and stayed there.(L)

Read full chapter

23 After they had severely flogged them, they threw them in jail, ordering the jailer to guard them carefully. 24 Receiving such an order, he put them into the inner prison and secured their feet in the stocks.(A)

A Midnight Deliverance

25 About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the prisoners were listening to them. 26 Suddenly there was such a violent earthquake that the foundations of the jail were shaken, and immediately all the doors were opened, and everyone’s chains came loose.(B) 27 When the jailer woke up and saw the doors of the prison standing open, he drew his sword and was going to kill himself, since he thought the prisoners had escaped.

28 But Paul called out in a loud voice, “Don’t harm yourself, because we’re all here!”

29 The jailer called for lights, rushed in, and fell down trembling before Paul and Silas. 30 He escorted them out and said, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” (C)

31 They said, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved—you and your household.”(D) 32 And they spoke the word of the Lord to him along with everyone in his house. 33 He took them the same hour of the night and washed their wounds. Right away he and all his family were baptized. 34 He brought them into his house, set a meal before them, and rejoiced because he had come to believe in God with his entire household.(E)

Read full chapter

Bible Gateway Recommends

CSB God Loves You Bible for Kids
CSB God Loves You Bible for Kids
Retail: $9.99
Our Price: $5.00
Save: $4.99 (50%)
CSB Spurgeon Study Bible, Cloth Over Board
CSB Spurgeon Study Bible, Cloth Over Board
Retail: $49.99
Our Price: $16.99
Save: $33.00 (66%)
4.5 of 5.0 stars
CSB Super Giant-Print Reference Bible--genuine leather, black
CSB Super Giant-Print Reference Bible--genuine leather, black
Retail: $79.99
Our Price: $27.99
Save: $52.00 (65%)
5.0 of 5.0 stars
CSB She Reads Truth Bible--soft leather-look, rose gold (indexed)
CSB She Reads Truth Bible--soft leather-look, rose gold (indexed)
Retail: $59.99
Our Price: $37.99
Save: $22.00 (37%)
4.5 of 5.0 stars
CSB Tony Evans Study Bible--soft leather-look, purple (indexed)
CSB Tony Evans Study Bible--soft leather-look, purple (indexed)
Retail: $79.99
Our Price: $42.49
Save: $37.50 (47%)
5.0 of 5.0 stars