Acts 27:13-44 (New International Version)

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The Storm

13 When a gentle south wind began to blow, they thought they had obtained what they wanted; so they weighed anchor and sailed along the shore of Crete. 14 Before very long, a wind of hurricane force,1 called the "northeaster," swept down from the island. 15 The ship was caught by the storm and could not head into the wind; so we gave way to it and were driven along. 16 As we passed to the lee of a small island called Cauda, we were hardly able to make the lifeboat2 secure. 17 When the men had hoisted it aboard, they passed ropes under the ship itself to hold it together. Fearing that they would run aground3 on the sandbars of Syrtis, they lowered the sea anchor and let the ship be driven along. 18 We took such a violent battering from the storm that the next day they began to throw the cargo overboard.4 19 On the third day, they threw the ship's tackle overboard with their own hands. 20 When neither sun nor stars appeared for many days and the storm continued raging, we finally gave up all hope of being saved. 21 After the men had gone a long time without food, Paul stood up before them and said: "Men, you should have taken my advice5 not to sail from Crete;6 then you would have spared yourselves this damage and loss. 22 But now I urge you to keep up your courage,7 because not one of you will be lost; only the ship will be destroyed. 23 Last night an angel8 of the God whose I am and whom I serve9 stood beside me10 24 and said, 'Do not be afraid, Paul. You must stand trial before Caesar;11 and God has graciously given you the lives of all who sail with you.'12 25 So keep up your courage,13 men, for I have faith in God that it will happen just as he told me.14 26 Nevertheless, we must run aground15 on some island."16

The Shipwreck

27 On the fourteenth night we were still being driven across the Adriatica Sea, when about midnight the sailors sensed they were approaching land. 28 They took soundings and found that the water was a hundred and twenty feetb deep. A short time later they took soundings again and found it was ninety feetc deep. 29 Fearing that we would be dashed against the rocks, they dropped four anchors from the stern and prayed for daylight. 30 In an attempt to escape from the ship, the sailors let the lifeboat17 down into the sea, pretending they were going to lower some anchors from the bow. 31 Then Paul said to the centurion and the soldiers, "Unless these men stay with the ship, you cannot be saved."18 32 So the soldiers cut the ropes that held the lifeboat and let it fall away. 33 Just before dawn Paul urged them all to eat. "For the last fourteen days," he said, "you have been in constant suspense and have gone without food--you haven't eaten anything. 34 Now I urge you to take some food. You need it to survive. Not one of you will lose a single hair from his head."19 35 After he said this, he took some bread and gave thanks to God in front of them all. Then he broke it20 and began to eat. 36 They were all encouraged21 and ate some food themselves. 37 Altogether there were 276 of us on board. 38 When they had eaten as much as they wanted, they lightened the ship by throwing the grain into the sea.22 39 When daylight came, they did not recognize the land, but they saw a bay with a sandy beach,23 where they decided to run the ship aground if they could. 40 Cutting loose the anchors,24 they left them in the sea and at the same time untied the ropes that held the rudders. Then they hoisted the foresail to the wind and made for the beach. 41 But the ship struck a sandbar and ran aground. The bow stuck fast and would not move, and the stern was broken to pieces by the pounding of the surf.25 42 The soldiers planned to kill the prisoners to prevent any of them from swimming away and escaping. 43 But the centurion wanted to spare Paul's life26 and kept them from carrying out their plan. He ordered those who could swim to jump overboard first and get to land. 44 The rest were to get there on planks or on pieces of the ship. In this way everyone reached land in safety.27
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