Ship Wrecked! ~ Acts 27

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Poster for Acts 13-28
  • to locate Ceasarea, Malta, Italy, Rome and the Mediterranean Sea on the map
  • to communicate the main events that happened when Paul journeyed to Rome
  • to verbalize that the wonderful adventure stories in the Bible literally took place with real people
  • to verbalize that God does what He says He is going to do


Paul was on a ship from Caesarea, went past Crete, and landed in Malta.


In a vision, or by physically standing beside Paul, Jesus told Paul he would go to Rome. Paul has appealed to Caesar, so he must go to Rome.

Main Events of Acts 27:

Paul was taken to a centurion named Julius. He was kind to Paul and when they put into port, he allowed Paul to see friends and receive care from them. It was the stormy part of the year, some time between September and October. The sailing was dangerous. When the ship made it to Crete, Paul told the centurion and the sailors, “I think this voyage will end in disaster, including cargo and lives.” But the centurion listened to the ship’s owner instead, that Crete was not a good place to spend the winter and that they should press on.

They set sail and a tempest takes over the ship. They stopped trying to steer and allowed the ship to go as it willed. On the 3rd day of the storm, the sailors lightened the load by getting rid of anything not important with weight. Many days pass without the sun or stars seen. At this point the sailors, and everyone else on the ship, began to lose hope. (But remember! Paul HAS to get to Rome! Jesus said so!) Paul stood up and basically told the people, “I told you so, but take heart! No one will die because an angel of the Lord has told me so. Be courageous! I believe God that it will be just as it was told me.” Then he went on to say, “BUT! We will run aground and be ship wrecked on an island.”

On the 14th day of the storm, the sailors sensed that they were close to land and attempted to sneak off the ship. Paul told the centurion that if he wanted to be saved, then ALL of the men had to stay on the boat. The men were very hungry because they had been saving the food in case they “needed it later” and Paul encouraged them to go ahead and eat their fill since no one was going to die. Paul blessed the bread and passed it around to everyone. There were 276 people on this ship. Everyone ate and then they tossed everything loose and heavy into the ocean.

In the morning they saw land and a bay area! The ship’s leadership planned to run the ship into the ground to get out of the storm and get people to land. As they were in the process of getting the ship close enough to the beach, it became stuck too far out and the violence of the waves began to break the ship apart. The soldiers on the ship were going to kill all of the prisoners. The centurion wanted to save Paul, so he did not allow the killing to happen. Instead he told everyone, “If you can swim, jump ship and go to shore. If you can’t swim, float on boards.” Everyone, all 276, made it to land. They were on a beach on the island of Malta.

Life Application of Acts 27:

Have you ever read the promises of God in scripture? There are a lot of them. Some promises He’s already fulfilled. For example: Israel forming a nation; Jerusalem being destroyed (um, a few times); and the Messiah’s coming from Bethlehem. Some promises have not happened yet, such as Jesus returning to earth. But there are other promises in scripture that we can claim everyday if we are willing to.

Did you know that God has a plan for you? (Jeremiah 29:11) Did you know that God gives rest to the weary and power to the weak? (Matthew 11:28 and Psalm 40:29) God will supply all of your needs. (Philippians 4:19) NOTHING can separate you from God’s love. (Romans 8:38)

There are SO many promises that God gives us. Many of them He gives in His mercy and grace. Others have conditions, such as Proverbs 1:33, “But all who listen to me will live in peace, untroubled by fear of harm.”

Which promise of God do you need right now? God says He will do what He says He will do. Search those promises out and claim them!!

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