Scripture Verse

He called for a light, and sprang in, and came trembling, and fell down before Paul and Silas, and brought them out, and said, Sirs, what must I do to be saved? Acts 16:29–30


John Newton (1725–1807)

Words: John New­ton, Ol­ney Hymns (Lon­don: W. Ol­iv­er, 1779), Book 1, num­ber 123. The trem­bling jail­er.

Music: Leyden Lud­wig Spohr (1784–1859), ar­ranged by Sam­uel S. Wes­ley (1810–1876) (🔊 pdf nwc).

Alternate Tunes:

Ludwig Spohr (1784–1859)


A be­liev­er, free from care,
May in chains, or dun­geons, sing,
If the Lord be with him there;
And be hap­pi­er than a king:
Paul and Si­las, thus con­fined,
Tho’ their backs were torn by whips,
Yet pos­sess­ing peace of mind,
Sang His praise with joy­ful lips.

Suddenly the pri­son shook,
Open flew the ir­on doors;
And the jail­er, ter­ror struck,
Now his cap­tives’ help im­plores:
Trembling at their feet he fell,
Tell me, sirs, what must I do
To be saved from guilt and hell?
None can tell me this but you.

Look to Je­sus, they re­plied.
If on Him thou canst be­lieve,
By the death which He has died,
Thou sal­va­tion shalt re­ceive.

While the liv­ing word he heard,
Faith sprang up with­in his heart;
And, re­leased from all he feared,
In their joy his soul had part.

Sinners, Christ is still the same,
O that you could like­wise fear!
Then the men­tion of His name
Would be mu­sic to your ear:
Jesus res­cues Sa­tan’s slaves,
His dear wounds still plead, For­give!
Jesus to the ut­most saves;
Sinners, look to Him and live.