Question and Answer 1

David Bast

Read: Acts 16:25-34

What must I do . . . ? (v. 30)

I once knew a man whose personalized license plate read Q and A 1. It was a reference to the Heidelberg Catechism’s much-loved first question and answer: “What is your only comfort in life and in death? That I am not my own, but belong . . . to my faithful Savior, Jesus Christ.” That’s a beautiful truth. But there’s an even more basic question and answer that ought to be considered first by everyone. It’s the Philippian jailer’s question and the apostle Paul’s answer.

“What must I do to be saved?” Our salvation is God’s grace from beginning to end; we do nothing to earn it, we take no credit for receiving it. But that does not mean we are passive, that we don’t have to respond to the gospel. It’s no good sitting around expecting someone else to respond for me. On the contrary, I must do something to be saved. Do what?

“Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved.” The jailer’s question cried out for an answer, and it got one. Sometimes people say that it is enough just to ask the big questions about life, that it doesn’t matter if you find answers to them. The journey is what’s important, not the arrival. That’s like saying to someone who is having a heart attack, “It’s enough that you are looking for the hospital; it doesn’t matter whether you actually get there.” Asking the question shows a recognition of our need. Acting on the answer means life or death. —David Bast

Prayer: Lord Jesus, I believe.