“The Shipwreck”

Acts 27:27-44


27 But when the fourteenth night came, as we were being carried about in the Adriatic Sea, about midnight the sailors began to suspect that some land was approaching them.

28 And when they took soundings, they found it to be twenty fathoms; and a little farther on they took another sounding and found it to be fifteen fathoms.

29 And fearing that we might run aground somewhere on the rocks, they cast four anchors from the stern and were praying for daybreak.

30 But as the sailors were trying to escape from the ship and had let down the ship’s boat into the sea, on the pretense of intending to lay out anchors from the bow,

31 Paul said to the centurion and to the soldiers, “Unless these men remain in the ship, you yourselves cannot be saved.”

32 Then the soldiers cut away the ropes of the ship’s boat and let it fall away.

33 Until the day was about to dawn, Paul was encouraging them all to take some food, saying, “Today is the fourteenth day that you have been constantly watching and going without eating, having taken nothing.

34 Therefore I encourage you to take some food, for this is for your salvation, for not a hair from the head of any of you will perish.”

35 And having said these things, he took bread and gave thanks to God in the presence of all. And he broke it and began to eat.

36 And all of them became cheerful and they themselves also took food.

37 And all of us in the ship were two hundred and seventy-six persons.

38 And when they had eaten enough, they began to lighten the ship by throwing out the wheat into the sea.

39 Now when day came, they could not recognize the land; but they were noticing a bay with a beach, and they were resolving to drive the ship onto it if they could.

40 And casting off the anchors, they left them in the sea while at the same time they were loosening the ropes of the rudders. And hoisting the foresail to the wind, they were heading for the beach.

41 But striking a reef where two seas met, they ran the vessel aground; and the bow stuck fast and remained immovable, but the stern began to be broken up by the force of the waves.

42 Now the soldiers’ plan was to kill the prisoners, so that none of them would swim away and escape;

43 but the centurion, wanting to bring Paul safely through, kept them from their intention, and ordered that those who could swim should jump overboard first and get to land,

44 and the rest should follow, some on planks, and others on various things from the ship. And so it happened that they all were brought safely to land.


Quote: "Human actions that work toward the rescue of all are acceptable contributions to the realization of God's purpose, but actions that seek the safety of one's own group while abandoning others will block this purpose until corrected."  (Robert Tannehill)