Deliverance of possessed girl16On another occasion, when we were going to the place of prayer we encountered a demon-possessed slave girl. She was used by her owners to earn much money by telling fortunes and predicting the future.17The girl followed us shouting: "These men are servants of the Most High God and they are letting you know how you can be saved."18She did this continually for several days until Paul became so exasperated that he turned towards the girl and addressed the spirit operating through her. "In the name of Jesus Christ I command you to come out of her!" he said. Immediately the spirit obeyed and left her.19-20However, when the girl's owners realised that they could no longer use her to make money, they seized Paul and Silas and hauled them before the magistrates in the market place. They claimed: "These Jews are fermenting uproar in the city.21They are encouraging people to do things that are contrary to our Roman customs."22As the crowd joined in the attack against Paul and Silas, the magistrates ordered that they be stripped and beaten.23They were severely flogged and then thrown into prison, where the jailer had strict orders to guard them carefully.24So he put them in a cell and secured their feet in the stocks.25Around midnight, Paul and Silas were praying and singing praises to God while the other prisoners listened.26Suddenly a violent earthquake shook the foundations of the prison; all the prison doors flew open and everyone's chains were unfastened.27The jailer awoke and seeing the prison doors open was about to kill himself, because he assumed all the prisoners had escaped.28But Paul shouted: "Stop! Don't kill yourself. We are all here!"The jailer and his household are baptised29The jailer called for lights, rushed into their cell and fell to the ground before Paul and Silas, trembling with fear.30He then led them out of the cell and asked them: "Sirs, how can I be saved?"31They told him: "Believe in the Lord Jesus and you and your whole household will be saved."32Then they revealed the Word of the Lord to the jailer and his whole household.33Even though it was the middle of the night, they were all baptised, once the jailer had washed Paul and Silas' wounds.34He welcomed them into his house and set a meal before them and was filled with such joy because he and his whole family had now become believers.Paul and Silas pardoned35At daylight, the magistrates sent officials to order the jailer to release Paul and Silas. The jailer told Paul: "You are free to go.36The magistrates have ordered that you are to be released. So go in peace."37But Paul told the officials: "The magistrate had us beaten publicly without trial, even though we are Roman citizens, and then had us thrown into prison. And now they want to be rid of us secretly? Never! Let them come here themselves and release us."38The officials went and reported this to the magistrates, who were alarmed when they realised that Paul and Silas were Roman citizens.39They came apologetically and escorted them out of the prison and asked them to leave the city.40But first, as soon as they were released from the prison, Paul and Silas went to Lydia's house where they met with the believers and encouraged them before leaving.
Scripture quoted by permission. The passage above is taken from THE TRUTH VERSION. Copyright © 2009 by Colin Urquhart. All rights reserved worldwide. (The Truth New Testament)