The people in charge realized they didn’t have a case against Paul & Silas, so they were trying to whisk them off without any fanfare. Notice also that nothing is mentioned about the earthquake or the opening of the cells etc.
The people didn’t recognize the hand of God when it happened. How often do we see miracles and the providence of God in various situations, but those around us are oblivious?
They attribute it to a natural phenomenon, or chance or they don’t even notice it. They just wanted these trouble makers to leave.
They had them beaten and jailed and thought for sure that that intimidation would be enough for them to turn tail and run out of town.
Have you ever been intimidated by someone in the hopes that you will just be quiet?
Well what was Paul’s response to that? He could have beat a hasty retreat out of town, not suffer any more hardships, beatings or jail.
It would have been the easy way out, but as usual, he didn’t take the easy way.
In fact, he pushed the issue even more.