“Sirs, what must I do to be saved?”

animated_umc_crossSo they said, “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved.” – Acts 16:30-31

“Finding the right questions is as crucial as finding the right answers,” says devotional writer Henri Nouwen. Yet how easy it is to run ahead of God’s Spirit as we talk to unbelievers about Christ, giving pre-packaged answers before we listen to their questions.

This tendency was highlighted several years ago when someone scrawled the words “Christ is the answer!” on the side of a building. A cynical passerby added these words: “What is the question?”

Paul and Silas, thrown into prison for the gospel’s sake, provoked a deep spiritual question in the heart of their jailer. This question was raised not because they had preached a three-point sermon at him but because they prayed and sang hymns to God. When an earthquake opened the prison doors and broke their chains, the jailer was about to kill himself, fearing that he would be put to death if his prisoners escaped. But Paul and Silas stopped him by choosing to stay in prison for his sake. At this he cried out, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” (Acts 16:30).

Today, as then, the Spirit will create the right questions in people’s hearts and make them ready for the right answer Jesus Christ.

Joanie Yoder

Tell the sweet story of Christ and His love,

Tell of His power to forgive;

Others will trust Him if only you prove True, every moment you live.

Wilson © Renewal 1952, The Rodeheaver Co.

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