This passage of scripture is dealing with the account of the Philippian jailor coming to a saving knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ. After witnessing the miracles that night, the great earthquake, opening of prison doors, and chains falling off of the prisoners, the man came to a realization of the mighty power of God. Being overwhelmed with the situation and not knowing what to do the jailer fell down before Paul and Silas crying out, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” Of all things in life this is the most important question that you must ask.
Most people today operate under the assumption that Heaven is a given and the only people that don’t go to Heaven are bad people. That state/think that they are not a bad person because they have not done anything bad. They have not murdered anyone, they have not stolen anything, they go to church, they have been baptized, they take communion, and the list goes on and on. People look for outward justification for being “good enough” when the need for salvation comes from within.
Paul tells us in Romans 3:23 that “All have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.” There is not a single person that has ever been born that is without sin. Many people ask how they can be a sinner if they have done nothing wrong. The answer to this question is found in Romans 5:12, “Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned.” That one man that Paul is talking about is Adam. We know the story well. God only put one limitation upon Adam, don’t eat of that tree! You can do anything you want, all you have to do is live in perfectness, you don’t have to work, you won’t grow old, you won’t be sick, enjoy what I have created for you. But what did Adam and Eve do? They disobeyed God and did that one thing He commanded them not to do.
At the moment they disobeyed His command, man committed treason against God and sin entered into their hearts. Adam’s sin has been passed down through every generation to you and me today. It isn’t our works that make us a sinner or a righteous person, we are sinners because we are born as sinners by nature. Romans 6:23 tells us, “For the wages of sin is death…” Our sin causes death, both physical and spiritual death. We will all die physically but because of sin we are already dead spiritually. This spiritual death is eternal separation from God in a literal Hell. But wait, there is also good news found in the second half of Romans 6:23, “…but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.”
1 Peter 2:24 tells us, “Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye are healed.” Here Peter tells us that when Jesus was hanging on the cross the sins of the world were placed upon Him.. My sin and your sin was placed upon Jesus. God’s wrath against us was poured out on Jesus. Jesus willingly took the punishment that was due to you and me upon Himself. He did this so that we could have forgiveness and eternal life in Heaven.
In response to the Philippian jailor’s question Paul said, “Believe in the Lord Jesus and you will be saved.” God has already done all the work. Jesus died for you and rose again. All you have to do is receive, in faith, the salvation God has to offer. Remember, our good works can’t save us. Salvation only comes through the finished work of the Lord Jesus Christ. You need to cry out to Jesus and ask Him to forgive you of your sins and be your personal Lord and Savior.