Shipwrecked but Safe
Having appealed for a hearing before Caesar, which was his right as a Roman citizen, Paul is taken as a prisoner on a ship bound for Rome. Because they did not heed Paul’s warning, they end up in the midst of a violent storm which threatens to sink the ship. This gives Paul another opportunity to testify. In the midst of difficulties, let us be aware of special opportunities to witness for Christ.
Paul had been assured that all aboard would be rescued for his sake. We are to be the salt of the earth, keeping society from crumbling. He tells those aboard that “the God to whom I belong and whom I worship” has said, “Do not be afraid” (27:23-24). How wonderful to know we belong to God, that we are the objects of his love! Let us worship him by our praise in the sanctuary and by our obedient lives throughout the week. Constantly he says to his people, “Be not afraid.” May we hear him say this to us every time we are in a difficult situation.
The ship smashes on a reef, but they all get safely ashore on Malta. From there they take a ship to Italy and travel by land to Rome. There Paul is under house arrest, giving him the chance to witness to those who visit him. The book ends with Paul at Rome for two years. Tradition says he was released and had further opportunity to work as a missionary.