25 But about midnight when Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns of praise to God, and the prisoners were listening to them; 26 suddenly there was a great earthquake, so [powerful] that the very foundations of the prison were shaken and at once all the doors were opened and everyone’s chains were unfastened.
This is one passage in the bible that demonstrates the power of true worship and how it can change the atmosphere and affect what is happening in the physical. When you think about the scenario, it does not look like one to rejoice and shout praises about. Paul and Silas are in prison and in chains. For many this is a depressing situation one that would cause us to complain and not to praise. Paul and Silas praised and worshiped God because they had a deeper understanding about God and true worship.
A true worshiper is not dissuaded by what is happening in the natural. Their worship does not spring forth from their circumstances; instead their worship is in obedience to the Holy Spirit. These two were men were walking after the leading of the Holy Spirit and their worship sprang forth because the Holy Spirit led them to worship while in chains and that was for a purpose. The bible says the other prisoners were watching and listening and God through the obedience of Paul and Silas had the perfect stage to demonstrate His power.
True worship comes from a pure heart. For Paul and Silas to worship in chains meant they were not bitter and they were not complaining thinking God had forsaken them which would be the attitude many of us would have in this situation. This men had been whipped and they were bleeding and in chains because of doing a good thing. Notice the content of their prayer and worship, it was directed to God praising Him. They were not even praying for God to deliver them from the chains they simply praised God.
They displayed maturity in the difficult situation that they were in. They must have believed that somehow God would turn this situation around to work for their good, no wonder they went into worship praising God for His goodness. They did not start throwing tantrums which would have been understandable considering the circumstances around them and what they had been subjected to.
Paul and Silas enjoyed fellowship with the Holy Spirit. In chains and in prison not knowing what their fate would be, they made the choice to fellowship with the Holy Spirit who led them to pray and sing songs of praise to God as they worshiped Him God was pleased with their worship and He sent forth His power to break the chains and open up the doors of the prison. True worship liberates and sets us free from the chains that the enemy tries to bind us with. Because they made the choice to worship in a difficult situation God not only set them free but also the jailer and his household were set free as they found the gift of salvation through Christ.
True worship releases the power of God over our lives.