What Do We Do in Times of Trouble?

What Do We Do in Times of Trouble?

Acts 16:16-34

Community Group Questions

  1. Think of the people that we have been introduced to so far in chapter 16: a Gentile businesswoman, a slave, and a Roman jailor. Would you have expected, say thinking from the perspective of a Jewish person in the first century, that any of these people would come to know the true God? What does this tell us about God and his work?
  2. When Paul cast out the spirit in the slave girl, what did that do for her as a person? How did it change her life?
  3. The owners of the slave girl presented Paul and Silas as Jews who didn’t care about Roman practices, while all along they were really Christians who cared deeply about the gospel and its impact on real lives. What is ironic at times about the way Christians are treated in the public square? What are some of the motivations for this treatment?
  4. Paul and Silas were singing in the midst of incarceration. How can this be? What did it tell the other prisoners, and what does it tell us, about God? How can we exhibit the same behavior today?
  5. Why do you think the Philippian jailor connects the earthquake with Paul and Silas, with their staying in the prison afterwards, and with salvation? How might similar connections be made in the minds and hearts of others when they see our lives and the work of God in our lives?

Family Worship Questions

  1. Read Acts 16:16-34 & Discuss:
  • Why do you think Paul commanded the spirit to come out of her? Wasn’t she speaking the truth?
  • Why do you think her owners were upset that she was now free of the spirit? What was their main concern, the woman or their money? What are things that we can become concerned with over other people’s well being?
  • Notice in verse 21 they say, “They are telling us to do things we Romans are not allowed to do.” (CEV). What is the reason they give for not doing what Paul and the others are teaching? The Bible sometimes teaches things that are contrary to what our culture, ethnicity, or country teach. Can you think of Bible commands that are hard for unbelievers in your neighborhood, school, or work to accept?
  • What do Paul and Silas do after being beaten and put in prison? Why do you think they were praying and singing rather than complaining? (Read Luke 21:10-19; John 15:18-25) What kind of treatment should we be ready to expect from non-Christians? Why can we handle it well?
  1. Sing: It is Well.
  2. Pray.