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salvation and acts 16:31

Discussions concerning the New Testament

salvation and acts 16:31

Postby disciplemate » Sun Aug 23, 2015 12:54 am

Hello everyone I was wanting to go abit more deeper into a certain verse I went over again in the book of acts. I am well on board with the concept of covenant salvation as opposed to personal salvation but I am abit puzzled on acts 16:31 "“Masters, what is necessary for me to do that I be saved?” 31 And they said “Believe in the Prince Yahshua and you and your house shall be saved.” "
From what I take of this verse, it seems to indicate the jailer is asking what HE needs TO DO to be saved, and then ofcourse the apostles go along with his question without any correction and say HE NEEDS to believe. To me this verse indicates a type of personal decision in order to obtain salvation.
I definitely took a good look at the christoenea commentary but on this occasion my query was not answered. So I am just wondering what the explanation is to this verse and how racial/covenant salvation is still compatible to this verse and not personal salvation, despite it indicating the latter.
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Re: salvation and acts 16:31

Postby disciplemate » Sun Aug 23, 2015 7:05 am

Im leaving no stone unturned with this :D
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Re: salvation and acts 16:31

Postby Staropramen » Sun Aug 23, 2015 10:17 am

"Saved" in Acts 16:31 is defined by Strongs [#4982] as "safe" i.e deliver or protect. When we repent we are υἱοθεσία [the positioning of a son] in other words we go from being enemies of Yahweh to being friends of Yahweh in Christ. We were already sons [and daughters] in our state of disobedience and by the act of repentance we become functional sons ready to serve our Master.

Biblical salvation is about turning away from sin and serving Christ. When we serve Christ we please Him and He rewards us. Obviously that's the best way to live our lives. We can trust God to make our path safe and deliver and protect us when we encounter trouble. The 501c3 churches lie when they tell you that you're going to an eternal torture chamber forever unless you accept their theology.

No doubt many Israelites have died and will die in their sins. But both Old and New Testaments assure us that All Israel is saved. Isaiah 45:25 and Romans 11:26. All Israelites that die in their sins will bow the knee and repent when they come face to face with Christ [Romans 14:11]. But these folks will have no rewards and face eternal shame and contempt [Daniel 12:2].

We are required to do an about face. And that is a personal decision. But, ALL of us who are of the faith of Abraham have the Spirit of God in us that causes us to make the right choice sooner or later. Do you really think it's possible for any one of us who are the true born to tell Christ "get lost" when we are with Him face to face? And even if we think it's possible the scripture nonetheless tells us otherwise.

The problem that we have with personal salvation isn't about choice in the biblical sense but rather it is when the opportunity to choose gets extended to tares and mamzers. This idea is a perversion of scripture.

21 Not all who say to Me ‘Prince, Prince!’ shall enter into the kingdom of the heavens, but he doing the will of My Father who is in the heavens. 22 Many shall say to Me in that day ‘Prince, Prince, have we not prophesied in Your name, and cast out demons in Your name, and have done many works of power in Your name?’ 23 And then shall I profess to them that ‘Never have I known you! Depart from Me, those who are working at lawlessness!’
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Matthew 7:21-23 CNT


^^^There's your tares and mamzers that get accepted in the churches of today. They play church and confess Jesus but they go into the Lake of Fire regardless. Now read on;

“24 Therefore each who hears these My words and does them, he shall be compared to a sensible man, who has built his house upon bedrock, 25 and the rain descends and the river comes and the winds blow, and they fall against that house, yet it does not fall, for it was founded upon the bedrock. 26 And each who hears these My words and not doing them, he shall be compared to a foolish man, who has built his house upon the sand, 27 and the rain descends and the river comes and the winds blow and they fall against that house and it falls, and great was its fall!”

Matthew 7:24-27


^^^There's your obedient and disobedient Israelites. The disobedient ones hear and I believe comprehend to some extent the Words ["my sheep hear my voice"] but choose to disobey and end up with nothing in the end. They're saved but they probably won't enjoy eternity very much. By contrast the tares and mamzers do not hear His voice at all and weave fairy tales from scripture to earn themselves a meal ticket at our feasts of charity. Scripture calls them spots [or stains] when they do this.

Hope this helps.
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Re: salvation and acts 16:31

Postby wmfinck » Sun Aug 23, 2015 10:20 am

Wow, sometimes I just cannot see what I do not discuss sufficiently. Take something for granted and you do not see a need to discuss it. It is all a matter of worldview.

Acts 16 wrote: 30 And brought them out, and said, Sirs, what must I do to be saved?
31 And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house.


First, the apostles consistently saw the imminent return of Christ and awaited the punishment of the ungodly. That was their worldview. They had that worldview because that was the way Christ had wanted them to think and act, as He said in the Gospel "Watch therefore: for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come." (Matthew 24:42, et al.)

Second, since the man was not already a Christian, then he was a pagan, and he and his family would be susceptible to the pagan practices and immorality of the time, as well as the judgement of God that the apostles perceived was to come upon the world because of those practices.

The world of the apostles consisting of both wheat and tares (without the question of race which we now have), rejecting Christ you do not need to worry about morality if you are a tare.

Accepting Christ you would accept the Gospel and keep the commandments, separating yourself from the immoral pagans and their practices (an example is in Romans chapter 1), and not suffering the judgement impending upon the ungodly.

This is certainly the same attitude which Christians should have today.

EDIT: I added an addendum to the notes on the website, thanks!
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Re: salvation and acts 16:31

Postby Hunter » Sun Aug 23, 2015 6:21 pm

Hi DM (disciplemate), maybe I can add something to the discussion. Firstly, let's go further back and read the following verses.

Act 16:20 And brought them to the magistrates, saying, These men, being Jews (Judeans), do exceedingly trouble our city,
Act 16:21 And teach customs, which are not lawful for us to receive, neither to observe, being Romans.
Act 16:22 And the multitude rose up together against them: and the magistrates rent off their clothes, and commanded to beat them.
Act 16:23 And when they had laid many stripes upon them, they cast them into prison, charging the jailor to keep them safely.
Act 16:24 Who, having received such a charge, thrust them into the inner prison, and made their feet fast in the stocks.


So, the jailer was charged, by the magistrates (Roman praetores) with keeping these particular prisoners securely imprisoned, so much so was he charged that he put them into the inner prison with their feet locked in stocks. Ask yourself, what would happen to the jailor had Paul and Silas escaped, in addition to rest of the other prisoners - the ones listening to Paul & Silas singing hymns to God in Acts 16:25. His consequences for such would have been to be put to death as punishment, as evidenced earlier in chapter 12 of the Book of Acts, looking specifically in verse 19.

Act 12:17 But he, beckoning unto them with the hand to hold their peace, declared unto them how the Lord had brought him out of the prison. And he said, Go shew these things unto James, and to the brethren. And he departed, and went into another place.
Act 12:18 Now as soon as it was day, there was no small stir among the soldiers, what was become of Peter.
Act 12:19 And when Herod had sought for him, and found him not, he examined the keepers, and commanded that they should be put to death. And he went down from Judaea to Caesarea, and there abode.


Thusly, it would make sense that he would rather of killed himself than to face humiliation and a likely worse method of death, which would give reason to his actions in vs.27 below.

Act 16:27 And the keeper of the prison awaking out of his sleep, and seeing the prison doors open, he drew out his sword, and would have killed himself, supposing that the prisoners had been fled.

But Paul had called out to him saying "Do thyself no harm: for we are all here." (Acts 16:28). Replying, he said "Men, what must I do to be saved?" I've heard it surmised that out of the mouth of the jailer this meant no more to him than "How am I to save my own skin in this situation" or "How am I to save my reputation as a jailor", but I think this line of thinking falls short. Rather, I think the jailor felt the deepest depths of despair in those moments - as his rash reaction of drawing his sword to kill himself illustrates - having believed his prisoners had escaped. But, instead, was shown mercy realizing they'd not only attempted to not escape but Paul had even called out to him preventing him from rashly taking his own life.

I think this man was in a state of immeasurable gratitude and merciful relief. And whether or not I'm over speculating, I'd say that he recognised the Hand of God in that the severity of the earthquake not only broke open the prison doors, but had inexplicably broke the bands/unfastened the fetters of Paul and company. I think his heart was laid bare in those moments and he was undone, his heart made ready to receive the Word of the Lord.

Without hesitation the jailor expressed his willingness and readiness to Paul and Silas. No doubt, earlier on, he'd heard them either directly speak about the notion of being "saved" or in regards to it in some way from Paul and Silas's accusers in the course of events. As the jailor, how could he not be aware of what Paul and Silas were accused of doing and the surrounding circumstances? He was definitely privy as to the charges against them. From the same chapter in the Book of Acts, read the following passages to demonstrate his likely knowledge of both the notion of salvation and most assuredly of the charges against Paul and Silas. He couldn't have been unaware of the entire ordeal.

Act 16:16 And it came to pass, as we went to prayer, a certain damsel possessed with a spirit of divination met us, which brought her masters much gain by soothsaying:
Act 16:17 The same followed Paul and us, and cried, saying, These men are the servants of the most high God, which shew unto us the way of salvation.

Act 16:18 And this did she many days. But Paul, being grieved, turned and said to the spirit, I command thee in the name of Jesus Christ to come out of her. And he came out the same hour.
Act 16:19 And when her masters saw that the hope of their gains was gone, they caught Paul and Silas, and drew them into the marketplace unto the rulers,
Act 16:20 And brought them to the magistrates, saying, These men, being Jews, do exceedingly trouble our city,
Act 16:21 And teach customs, which are not lawful for us to receive, neither to observe, being Romans.
Act 16:22 And the multitude rose up together against them: and the magistrates rent off their clothes, and commanded to beat them.
Act 16:23 And when they had laid many stripes upon them, they cast them into prison, charging the jailor to keep them safely.


So he was basically asking them in the best way he knew how when it came to the "Way of Salvation", that he'd most likely never considered and only vaguely knew about. Suddenly, he was desperate to know about what to do to receive it, whatever he thought it might be about. They said "Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved...", but they didn't just leave it at that, unlike the mystics of judeo-christianity often do as just some single, mystical, untethered, ethereal thought in your mind void of any substance transitioning you to an immediate state of "born-again" bliss which comes with a guaranteed place in heaven. Neither was there a list of sacraments or rites that he, first, had to perform. No! !t says immediately in vs. 32 "And they (Paul and Silas) spoke the Word of the Lord to him and all who were in his household." Now, ask yourself, what is this "Word of the Lord"? And what does it comprise? What Gospel did the apostles share with him and the rest of his house, so that they'd believed on Jesus? What things were they believing for?

One more thing, logic tells me "personal salvation" (if there is any) would be excluded in the event of the jailor with Paul and Silas. He asked to them, "Men, what must I do to be saved?" And they (Paul and Silas) said, "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house." How could Paul and Silas offer "personal salvation" to the jailor's whole household when he'd asked "what must I do". Would it make sense for you, today, to walk into a modern, judeo-christian church and ask the preacher, "I want to be saved", then he responds, "you and your wife, children and anyone else under your care at home shall be saved". How could he make that magical claim if its supposedly just a "personal salvation" thing going on for you at that moment?
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Re: salvation and acts 16:31

Postby disciplemate » Sun Aug 23, 2015 11:49 pm

Again thankyou all for the replies. I did have my own theories of the verse circling around however it is always good to have back up and other opinion. Those explanations do make sense in accordance to the verse under question. Iron sharpens iron and I am glad I am progressing in my understanding of things. When it comes to the supposed "personal salvation" passages, I am able to overcome pretty much all of them to the understanding of corporate salvation, that was however one that made me ponder abit. :beer:
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Re: salvation and acts 16:31

Postby ElleJay » Mon Aug 24, 2015 11:35 pm

Hunter wrote:
One more thing, logic tells me "personal salvation" (if there is any) would be excluded in the event of the jailor with Paul and Silas. He asked to them, "Men, what must I do to be saved?" And they (Paul and Silas) said, "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house." How could Paul and Silas offer "personal salvation" to the jailor's whole household when he'd asked "what must I do". Would it make sense for you, today, to walk into a modern, judeo-christian church and ask the preacher, "I want to be saved", then he responds, "you and your wife, children and anyone else under your care at home shall be saved". How could he make that magical claim if its supposedly just a "personal salvation" thing going on for you at that moment?


Inciteful ... I have not thought of that verse in that context. :)

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