Paul Refuses to Depart Secretly

And when it was day, the magistrates sent the officers, saying, “Let those men go.”

36 So the keeper of the prison reported these words to Paul, saying, “The magistrates have sent to let you go. Now therefore depart, and go in peace.”

37 But Paul said to them, “They have beaten us openly, uncondemned Romans, and have thrown us into prison. And now do they put us out secretly? No indeed! Let them come themselves and get us out.”

38 And the officers told these words to the magistrates, and they were afraid when they heard that they were Romans. 39 Then they came and pleaded with them and brought them out, and asked them to depart from the city. 40 So they went out of the prison and entered the house of Lydia; and when they had seen the brethren, they encouraged them and departed. — Acts 16:35-40.

After day breaks, the magistrates command that Paul and Silas be set free. The keeper of the prison reports this to Paul and tells him to leave their city quietly.

However, Paul insists that they, being uncondemned Romans, were beaten publicly and thrown into prison, it being illegal to beat a Roman citizen without trial. He seeks official clearance from the local authorities. When the magistrates hear that they are Romans, they are afraid. They come and plead with Paul and Silas. They bring them out of prison and ask them to leave their city.

So Paul and Silas leave the prison and go to the house of Lydia. They meet and encourage their fellow Christians before leaving the city.

Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.


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