Front Matter The Story of a Beautiful Garden The First Baby in the World and His Brother The Great Ship That Saved Eight People The Tower That Was Never Finished The Story of a Long Journey How Abram's Choice Brought Blessing The Angel by the Well The Rain of Fire That Fell on a City The Boy Who Became an Archer How an Angel's Voice Saved a Boy's Life The Story of a Journey after a Wife How Jacob Stole His Brother's Blessing Jacob's Wonderful Dream A Midnight Wrestling Match The Rich Man's Son Who Was Sold as a Slave From the Prison to the Palace How Joseph's Dream Came True A Lost Brother Found From the Land of Famine to the Land of Plenty The Beautiful Baby Who Was Found in a River The Voice from the Burning Bush The River That Ran Blood The Night When a Nation Was Born How the Sea Became Dry Land and the Sky Rained Bre The Mountain That Smoked and Words That Were Spoke How Aaron Made a Golden Calf and What Became of It The Tent Where God Lived Among His People How They Worshipped God in the Tabernacle What Strong Drink Brought to Aaron's Sons The Scapegoat in the Wilderness The Cluster of Grapes from the Land of Canaan How the Long Journey of the Israelites Came to an What a Wise Man Learned from an Ass How Moses Looked upon the Promised Land The Story of Job The Story of a Scarlet Cord How the River Jordan Became Dry The Story of a Wedge of Gold How Joshua Conquered the Land of Canaan The Old Man Who Fought Against the Giants The Avenger of Blook and the Cities of Refuge The Story of an Altar Beside the River The Presnt That Ehud Brought to King Eglon How a Woman Won a Great Victory Gideon and His Brave Three Hundred Jephthah's Rash Promise and What Came from It The Strong Man: How He Lived and How He Died The Idol Temple at Dan and Its Priest How Ruth Gleaned in the Field of Boaz The Little Boy with a Linen Coat How the Idol Fell Down Before the Ark The Last of the Judges The Tall Man Who Was Chosen King How Saul Saved the Eyes of the Men of Jabesh The Brave Young Prince Saul's Great Sin and His Great Loss The Shepherd Boy of Bethlehem The Shepherd Boy's Fight with the Giant The Little Boy Looking for the Arrows Where David Found the Giant's Sword How David Spared Saul's Life The Last Days of King Saul The Shepherd Boy Becomes a King The Sound in the Treetops The Cripple at the King's Table The Prophet's Story of the Little Lamb David's Handsome Son and How He Stole the Kingdom Absalom in the Wood; David on the Throne The Angel with the Drawn Sword on Mount Moriah Solomon on This Father's Throne The Wise Young King The House of God on Mount Moriah The Last Days of Solomon's Reign The Breaking Up of a Great Kingdom The King Who Led Israel to Sin The Prophet Who Raised a Boy to Life The Prayer That Was Answered in Fire The Voice That Spoke to Elijah in the Mount The Wounded Prophet and His Story What Ahab Paid for His Vineyard The Arrow That Killed a King Elijah's Chariot of Fire A Spring Sweetened by Salt The Pot of Oil and the Pot of Poison The Little Boy at Shunem How a Little Girl Helped to Cure a Leper The Chariots of Fire around Elisha What the Lepers Found in the Camp Jehu, the Furious Driver of His Chariot Elisha and the Bow; Jonah and Nineveh How the Ten Tribes Were Lost The First Four Kings of Judah The Little Boy Who Was Crowned King Three Kings and a Great Prophet The Good King Hezekiah The Lost Book Found in the Temple The Last Four Kings of Judah and the Weeping Proph What Ezekiel Saw in the Valley The Jewish Captives in the Court of the King The Golden Image and the Fiery Furnace The Tree That Was Cut Down and Grew Again The Writing upon the Wall Daniel in the Den of Lions The Story of a Joyous Journey The New Temple on Mount Moriah The Beautiful Queen of Persia The Scribe Who Wrote the Old Testament The Nobleman Who Built the Wall of Jerusalem Ezra's Great Bible Class in Jerusalem The Angel by the Altar The Manger of Bethlehem The Star and the Wise Men The Boy in his Father's House The Prophet in the Wilderness Jesus in the Desert, and beside the River The Water Jars at the Wedding Feast The Stranger at the Well The Story of a Boy in Capernaum and a Riot A Net Full of Fishes The Leper and the Man Let Down through the Roof The Cripple at the Pool and the Withered Hand The Twelve Disciples and the Sermon on the Mount The Captain's Servant, the Widow's Son, and a Sinn Some Stories Jesus Told by the Sea "Peace, Be Still" The Little Girl Who Was Raised to Life A Dancing Girl and What Was Given Her The Feast beside the Sea and What Followed It The Answer to a Mother's Prayer The Glory of Jesus on the Mountain The Little Child in the Arms of Jesus At the Feast of Tabernacles The Man with Clay on His Face The Good Shepherd and the Good Samaritan Lazarus Raised to Life Some Parables in Perea The Poor Rich Man and the Rich Poor Man Jesus at Jericho Palm Sunday The Last Vistis of Jesus to the Temple The Parables on the Mount of Olives The Last Supper The Olive Orchard and the High Priests Hall The Crown of Thorns The Darkest Day of All the World The Brightest Day of All the World The Stranger on the Shore The Church of the First Days The Man at the Beautiful Gate The Right Way to Give, and the Wrong Way Stephen with the Shining Face The Man Reading in the Chariot The Voice That Spoke to Saul What Peter Saw by the Sea How the Iron Gate Was Opened The Earliest Missionaries The Song in the Prison Paul's Speech on the Hill Paul at Corinth Paul at Ephesus Paul's Last Journey to Jerusalem The Speech on the Stairs Two Years in Prison The Story That Paul Told to the King Paul in the Storm How Paul Came to Rome and How He Lived There The Throne of God The City of God

Story of the Bible Told for Young and Old - Jesse Hurlbut

Paul in the Storm

When Paul chose to be tried before Caesar the emperor which was his right as a Roman, it became necessary to send him from Caesarea in Judea to Rome in Italy, where Caesar lived. In those years there were no ships sailing at regular times from city to city, but people who wished to go to places over the sea waited until they could find ships with loads sailing to those places. Paul and some other prisoners were given into the charge of a Roman centurion or captain named Julius, to be taken to Rome. Julius found a ship sailing from Caesarea to places on the shore of Asia Minor, which would take them a part of the way to Rome. He took Paul and the other prisoners on board this ship, and with Paul went his friends, Luck the doctor and Aristarchus from Thessalonica. Perhaps Timothy also was with them, but of this we are not certain.

They set sail from Caesarea, after Paul had been in prison more than two years; and the followed the coast northward to Sidon. There they stopped for a day; and Julius the centurion was very kind to Paul, and let him go ashore to see his friends who were living there. From Sidon they turned to the northwest and sailed past the island of Cyprus, and then westward by the shore of Asia Minor. At a city called Myra they left the ship, and went on board another ship, which was sailing from Alexandria to Italy with a load of wheat from the fields of Egypt.

Soon a heavy wind began to blow against the ship, and it sailed very slowly for many days; but at last came to the large island of Crete, and followed its southern shore in the face of the wind until they found a harbor, and they stayed for a few days. But this harbor was not a good one, and they thought to leave it and sail to another.

Paul now said to them, "Sirs, I see that this voyage will be with great loss to the load and the ship, and with great danger to the lives of us all."

And he urged them to stay where they were at anchor. But the owner of the ship and its captain thought that they might sail in safety; and Julius the centurion listened to them rather than to Paul. So when a gentle south wind began to blow, they set sail once more, closely following the shore of the island of Crete. But soon the wind grew into a great storm, and the ship could not face it, and was driven out of its course. Behind the ship was a little boat, and this they drew up on board; and as the ship creaked and seemed in danger of going to pieces, they tied ropes around it to hold it together.

The storm grew and drove the ship away from the island into the open sea. To make the vessel lighter they threw overboard a part of the load; and the next day they cast into the sea all the loose ropes and everything on the ship that could be spared.

Day after day went on, with no sight of the sun, and night after night with no sight of the stars. The great waves rolled over the ship and beat upon it, until those on board hardly hoped to save their lives. In their fear, for days the men and the prisoners had eaten nothing. But in the midst of the storm, Paul stood up among them and said:

"Sirs, you should have listened to me, and not have set sail from Crete, for then we might have been saved much harm and loss. But even as it is, be of good cheer; for though the ship will be lost, all of us on board shall be saved. This night there stood by me an angel of the Lord, to whom I belong, and whom I serve, and the angel said to me, 'Fear not, Paul; you shall yet stand before Caesar; and God has given to you all those who are sailing with you.'

Paul in the storm at sea


"Now friends, be of good cheer; for I believe God, that it shall be even as th angel said to me. But we must cast upon some island."

When the storm had lasted fourteen days, at night the sailors thought that they were coming near to land. They dropped down the line and found that the water was twenty fathoms deep: then after a little they let down the line again and found the water only fifteen fathoms deep. They were sure now that land was near, but they were afraid that the ship might be driven upon the rocks; so they threw out from the stern or rear-end four anchors to hold the ship; and then they longed for the day to come.

The sailors let down the little boat, saying that they would throw out some more anchors from the bow, or front of the ship, but really intending to row away in the boat and leave the ship and all on board to be destroyed. But Paul saw their purpose, and he said to the centurion, "Unless these sailors stay in the ship none of us can be saved."

Then the soldiers cut away the ropes of the boat, and let it fall off, so that the sailors could not get away. And as it drew toward daylight, Paul urged them all to take some food. He said:

"This is the fourteenth day that you have waited without any food. Now I beg of you to eat, for you need it to keep your lives safely. You will all be saved; not an hair shall fall from the head of one of you."

He took some bread and gave thanks to God before them all; then he broke it and began to eat. This encouraged all the others, so that they too took food. There were in all on board the ship, sailors and soldiers, and prisoners, and others, two hundred and seventy-six people. After they had eaten enough they threw out into the sea what was left of its load of wheat, so that the ship might be less heavy upon the waves, and might go nearer to the shore.

As soon as the day dawned, they could see land, but did not know what land it was. They saw a bay with a beach, into which they thought that they might run the ship. So they cut loose the anchors, leaving them in the sea, and they hoisted up the foresail to the wind, and made toward the shore. The ship ran aground and the front end was stuck fast in the sand, but the rear part began to break in pieces from the beating of the waves.

Now came another danger, just as they were beginning to hope for their lives. By the Roman law, a soldier who had charge of a prisoner must take his prisoner's place if he escaped from his care. These soldiers feared that their prisoners might swim ashore and get free. So they asked the centurion to let them kill all the prisoners, while they were still on board the ship. But Julius the centurion loved Paul, and to save Paul's life, kept them from killing the prisoners. He commanded that those who could swim should leap overboard and get first to the land. Then the rest went ashore, some on planks, and some on broken pieces of the ship. And all came safe to the shore, not one life being lost.

And then they found that they were on the island of Melita, which is in the Great Sea, south of the larger island of Sicily.