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Acts 16:31

Albert Barnes
Notes on the Whole Bible

Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ - This was a simple, a plain, and an effectual direction. They did not direct him to use the means of grace, to pray, or to continue to seek for salvation. They did not advise him to delay, or to wait for the mercy of God. They told him to believe at once; to commit his agitated, and guilty, and troubled spirit to the Saviour, with the assurance that he should find peace. They presumed that he would understand what it was to believe, and they commanded him to do the thing. And this was the uniform direction which the early preachers gave to those inquiring the way to life. See the notes on Matthew 16:16. Compare the notes on Acts 8:22.

And thy house - And thy family. That is, the same salvation is equally adapted to, and offered to your family. It does not mean that his family would be saved simply by his believing, but that the offers had reference to them as well as to himself; that they might be saved as well as he. His attention was thus called at once, as every man‘s should be, to his family. He was reminded that they needed salvation, and he was presented with the assurance that they might unite with him in the peace and joy of redeeming mercy. Compare the notes on Acts 2:39. It may be implied here that the faith of a father may be expected to be the means of the salvation of his family. It often is so in fact; but the direct meaning is, that salvation was offered to his family as well as himself, implying that if they believed they should also be saved.

Matthew Henry
Concise Bible Commentary
The consolations of God to his suffering servants are neither few nor small. How much more happy are true Christians than their prosperous enemies! As in the dark, so out of the depths, we may cry unto God. No place, no time is amiss for prayer, if the heart be lifted up to God. No trouble, however grievous, should hinder us from praise. Christianity proves itself to be of God, in that it obliges us to be just to our own lives. Paul cried aloud to make the jailer hear, and to make him heed, saying, Do thyself no harm. All the cautions of the word of God against sin, and all appearances of it, and approaches to it, have this tendency. Man, woman, do not ruin thyself; hurt not thyself, and then none else can hurt thee; do not sin, for nothing but that can hurt thee. Even as to the body, we are cautioned against the sins which do harm to that. Converting grace changes people's language of and to good people and good ministers. How serious the jailer's inquiry! His salvation becomes his great concern; that lies nearest his heart, which before was furthest from his thoughts. It is his own precious soul that he is concerned about. Those who are thoroughly convinced of sin, and truly concerned about their salvation, will give themselves up to Christ. Here is the sum of the whole gospel, the covenant of grace in a few words; Believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house. The Lord so blessed the word, that the jailer was at once softened and humbled. He treated them with kindness and compassion, and, professing faith in Christ, was baptized in that name, with his family. The Spirit of grace worked such a strong faith in them, as did away further doubt; and Paul and Silas knew by the Spirit, that a work of God was wrought in them. When sinners are thus converted, they will love and honour those whom they before despised and hated, and will seek to lessen the suffering they before desired to increase. When the fruits of faith begin to appear, terrors will be followed by confidence and joy in God.
Adam Clarke
Bible Commentary

Believe on the Lord Jesus - Receive the religion of Christ, which we preach, and let thy household also receive it, and ye shall be all placed in the sure way to final salvation.

Ellen G. White
This Day With God, 158.2

I praise the Lord this morning for the peace I enjoy. There is perfect rest for me in the Lord. I trust in His love. Why should we not rest in the love of God, the assurance of His word? What saith Jesus? “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” What can be more positive than this promise? “Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light” (Matthew 11:28-30). Then come; let us who believe in Jesus Christ not delay a moment, but come. TDG 158.2

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Ellen G. White
That I May Know Him, 115.2

Many teach that all that is necessary to salvation is to believe in Jesus, but what saith the word of truth?—“Faith without works is dead” (James 2:26). We are to “fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life,” take up the cross, deny self, war against the flesh, and follow daily in the footsteps of the Redeemer.... TMK 115.2

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Ellen G. White
In Heavenly Places, 323.5

You have neighbors. Will you give them the message? You may never have had the hands of ordination laid upon you, but you can humbly carry the message. You can testify that ... all for whom Christ died shall have everlasting life if they believe on Him. HP 323.5

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Ellen G. White
God's Amazing Grace, 226.1

Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house. Acts 16:31. AG 226.1

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