1. Last week, we considered how Jesus broke down of the kingdom of darkness
and advanced the Gospel into Samaria:
a. Satan had empowered Simon, who deceived the Samaritans with false signs
a. The Samaritans had received the Gospel and had been baptized, but had not
yet received the Spirit.
(i) Philip had this gift; he preached by the Spirit\u2019s power, but he couldn\u2019t
(ii) Peter and John had to come to bestow it:
(a) They had to lay their hands on the disciples.
(b) When they did, the Samaritans received the Spirit.
(c) Only one who had the authority to confer the Spirit could do so, and
(d) The reason must have been that the Lord wanted His church to remain one: united in one confession \u2013 the Scriptures were still being written \u2013 and in Spirit.
b. However, when Simon saw the Spirit was given through the laying on of
hands, he asked to buy this ability from the apostles.
(i) Peter was so offended by this \u2013 that Simon thought the Spirit was a
(a) To repent of this sin: which was his and all men\u2019s duty, even if it is
now outside of their power to do so (our sin in Adam makes us
responsible for our own sinful condition).
(b) And to pray that the Lord might change his heart so that he might
repent and do what is right (repentance is sovereignly in the Lord\u2019s
hands, as it depends on the new birth to bestow the ability to repent and
(c) Simon was still bound by the sin of his heart, and he needed the grace of God to change it: we\u2019ll see a perfect example of this in the evening message in the conversion of the apostle Paul.
a. We read that the apostles stayed in Samaria for a while to confirm the church.
(i) This shows us the importance of discipleship.
(ii) We shouldn\u2019t be out merely to get conversions, but to make disciples
b. Then they headed back to Jerusalem, preaching to the Samarians they found on the way. \u201cSo, when they had solemnly testified and spoken the word of the Lord, they started back to Jerusalem, and were preaching the gospel to many villages of the Samaritans\u201d (Acts 8:25).
(v) After he was baptized, he went back to his country, perhaps now as an
evangelist rather than a mere court official, fulfilling what the Lord said
through David in Psalm 68:31, \u201cEnvoys will come out of Egypt; Ethiopia
will quickly stretch out her hands to God.\u201d
2. Here we have the story of the Ethiopian eunuch\u2019s conversion, by whom Ethiopia
may first have heard the good news about Christ. We\u2019ll see three things in our
a. First, we see the Spirit of the Lord bring Philip to the Ethiopian.
b. Second, we see the Spirit bring the Ethiopian to Christ.
c. Finally, we see the Spirit bring Christ to Ethiopia and to others through the
1. The Spirit directs Philip into the wilderness. \u201cBut an angel of the Lord spoke to Philip saying, "Get up and go south to the road that descends from Jerusalem to Gaza." (This is a desertr oad.) So he got up and went\u201d (vv. 26-27).
a. Once the apostles had finished preaching the Gospel in Samaria, they
returned to Jerusalem:
(i) Philip either remained in Samaria.
(ii) Or he returned with them to Jerusalem.
b. While in Samaria, or while on his way to Jerusalem, he was redirected by an
angel, telling him to go further south.
(i) Samaria was north of Jerusalem, so he already would have needed to go
(iv) We shouldn\u2019t expect to see angels today \u2013 although we may, if the Lord
wills \u2013 but they are still at work ministering to us and directing us as we
minister in the name of Christ.
2. Unknown to Philip, a very important man was traveling that road: the Ethiopian
eunuch: \u201cAnd there was an Ethiopian eunuch, a court official of Candace,
queen of the Ethiopians, who was in charge of all her treasure; and he had come
to Jerusalem to worship\u201d (v. 27).
a. Ethiopia is in Northeast Africa, a long way from Jerusalem:
(ii) The Lord said in Isaiah 52 that He would bear His holy arm in the sight
of all the nations, that all the ends of the earth may see the salvation of
God (v. 10).
(i) To be a eunuch could mean two things: an official or one emasculated or
both. Queens would often use eunuchs in their court; some would even
emasculate their male children at birth to prepare them for this office.
(ii) In the Old Covenant, one in this condition could never enter the assembly
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