The Story of the Shipwreck

Acts 27‑28  •  3 min. read  •  grade level: 5
There were 276 people on board ship, and we left them with four anchors holding the ship from crashing on rocks while they waited for morning to come. As dawn began to lighten the sky, Paul got some of the food ready that was on board. They all watched as he gave thanks to God and then urged them to cheer up and eat. They all ate enough to regain their strength and threw the rest away to lighten the ship.
Morning light showed them a strange island with a creek flowing into the sea where they could run the ship aground. They pulled up the anchors and hoisted up the mainsail and let the wind drive them in to shore. The front of the ship stuck fast, but the back part was broken to pieces by the pounding waves.
“Kill the prisoners, lest any of them should swim out, and escape,” cried the soldiers. But their leader said no and told everyone who could to swim to land. Those who couldn’t swim were told to grab a board or a broken piece of the ship so they could float to shore.
Can you guess how many made it safely to land? Every single one of them made it! God had promised Paul that he and all those who were on board with him would be safe. Nobody can break God’s promise!
That promise was not made to you, but here is one God has made for you: “He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him” (John 3:3636He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him. (John 3:36)).
It was the island of Malta where they landed. They were all soaking wet, and it was cold and pouring rain. The best thing for them was a big bonfire, and the kind natives of the island had one blazing in no time. Paul set to work gathering sticks to pile on the fire, but there was more than sticks in his bundle  .  .  .  a nasty snake did not like the fire and bit him on the hand and hung on.
Everyone knew it was a poisonous snake, and they thought the snake’s bite would kill Paul. After he shook the snake off into the fire, they watched Paul closely for a long time, but he felt no harm.
Did you know that if you belong to Jesus, you are His forever and He will never let you go? If you are born into God’s family, no one can snatch you out of His hand. God loves His children and He takes care of them, but He does not spoil them.
The chief man on Malta was very sick, but in answer to Paul’s prayer he was wonderfully healed, and many others were also healed in the three months that they stayed there. It seems that Paul the prisoner was the most important man on that ship!
Are you saved? Do you belong to Jesus? You are very important to the God of heaven. He is watching over you, but He has not promised to give you the top place and to make you comfortable. Paul left that island as a prisoner and went on to a prison in Rome  .  .  .  and finally to death. Our Jesus is worth all we can give, and more. He is “the Son of God, who loved me, and gave Himself for me” (Galatians 2:2020I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me. (Galatians 2:20)).
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