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Acts Chapter 8

Study: The Baptism of the Holy Spirit


It must be mentioned that, in each of the areas opened up to the Gospel, it took an apostle. Peter opened up Jerusalem (Acts 1-2); Peter and John opened up Judea and Samaria (Acts 8); and Paul opened up out "to the uttermost" or, specifically, to us.

Acts 1:8
But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.
  • This chapter through chapter 12, is "Judea and Samaria", a major division in Acts
Acts 8:1
And Saul was consenting unto his death. And at that time there was a great persecution against the church which was at Jerusalem; and they were all scattered abroad throughout the regions of Judaea and Samaria, except the apostles.

John 7:38-39
He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water. (But this spake he of the Spirit, which they that believe on him should receive: for the Holy Ghost was not yet given; because that Jesus was not yet glorified.)
  • Acts 8:1...............Acts 1:8 | fulfillment.................prophecy
  • Stephen is the first RECORDED martyr, but probably not the first, certainly not close to being the last!
  • This would be included in the time in Paul's life that he referred to as being "counted as dung"
  • But Jesus used Saul, (later Paul) to fulfill His prophecy of the dispersion (Matthew 28:19-20, Acts 1:8).
  • This is precisely why and how we ourselves got the Gospel-the Dispersia from persecution
  • This is the beginning of the martyrdom, as recorded in Foxes Book of Martyrs
  • Acts 1:8 said that this is the order of dispersion, Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria, the uttermost parts of the earth
  • Saul in actuality did the Church a favor in scattering them, which is how we got the Gospel
  • Persecution makes the church grow

Philippians 3:8
Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ,

Acts 8:2
And devout men carried Stephen to his burial, and made great lamentation over him.
  • The religious leaders killed him and left him for others to bury
  • Burial: a sure picture is of sowing a seed, death (sleep) and resurrection. (1 Corinthians 15:42-44)
    CREMATION: You do not burn a seed when you bury it.
  • This is not about legalism, as God can and will give anyone saved a new glorified body, no matter how they die or are buried (or not). It is merely a testimony of the Gospel.
  • Both groups were very devout, it is just a question of devout....for what. The disciples were devout for the true God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. The Pharisees, Sadducees were devout for their religion
  • The only reason, therefore, for God mentioning that the men were devout is their devotion to HIM
  • Murder was in their hearts to offer the Messiah over to the Romans. It was in their hearts to kill anyone who reminded them of this as well


1 Corinthians 15:42-44
So also is the resurrection of the dead. It is sown in corruption; it is raised in incorruption: It is sown in dishonour; it is raised in glory: it is sown in weakness; it is raised in power: It is sown a natural body; it is raised a spiritual body. There is a natural body, and there is a spiritual body.

(John 12:24)
Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except a corn of wheat fall into the ground and die, it abideth alone: but if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit.

Proverbs 30:15-16
The horseleach hath two daughters, crying, Give, give. There are three things that are never satisfied, yea, four things say not, It is enough: The grave; and the barren womb; the earth that is not filled with water; and the fire that saith not, It is enough.

DEVOUT, a. [L. See Devote.]
  1. Yielding a solemn and reverential attention to God in religious exercises, particularly in prayer.
    We must be constant and devout in the worship of God.
  2. Pious; devoted to religion; religious.
    Simeon was a just man and devout. Luke 2.
    Devout men carried Stephen to his burial. Acts 8.
  3. Expressing devotion or piety; as, with eyes devout.
  4. Sincere; solemn; earnest; as, you have my devout wishes for your safety.
  5. DEVOUT, n. A devotee. [Not used.]
Acts 8:3
As for Saul, he made havock of the church, entering into every house, and haling men and women committed them to prison.
  • "Haling" simply means hauling them into court.
  • Men and women both were witnessing, being persecuted
  • Jailed for their faith, just like today, coming soon here


Philippians 1:12-18
But I would ye should understand, brethren, that the things which happened unto me have fallen out rather unto the furtherance of the gospel; So that my bonds in Christ are manifest in all the palace, and in all other places; And many of the brethren in the Lord, waxing confident by my bonds, are much more bold to speak the word without fear. Some indeed preach Christ even of envy and strife; and some also of good will: The one preach Christ of contention, not sincerely, supposing to add affliction to my bonds: But the other of love, knowing that I am set for the defence of the gospel. What then? notwithstanding, every way, whether in pretence, or in truth, Christ is preached; and I therein do rejoice, yea, and will rejoice.

Philippians 3:4-6
Though I might also have confidence in the flesh. If any other man thinketh that he hath whereof he might trust in the flesh, I more: Circumcised the eighth day, of the stock of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, an Hebrew of the Hebrews; as touching the law, a Pharisee; Concerning zeal, persecuting the church; touching the righteousness which is in the law, blameless.

HAV'OCK, n. Waste; devastation; wide and general destruction.
Ye gods! what havock does ambition make
Among your works.
As for Saul, he made havock of the church. Acts 8.

HAV'OCK, v.t. To waste; to destroy; to lay waste.
To waste and havock yonder world.

Acts 22:4
And I persecuted this way unto the death, binding and delivering into prisons both men and women.

Acts 26:11
And I punished them oft in every synagogue, and compelled them to blaspheme; and being exceedingly mad against them, I persecuted them even unto strange cities.

1 Timothy 1:13
Who was before a blasphemer, and a persecutor, and injurious: but I obtained mercy, because I did it ignorantly in unbelief.

Acts 8:4
Therefore they that were scattered abroad went every where preaching the word.
  • Dispersed, but faithful, bold, steadfast
  • They went to every place to preach THE WORD, not dwell on their problems, not just to flee persecution (which they were doing), not to grumble, not to whine
  • The Church can NEVER be hurt from the outside; only from the INSIDE, by corrupt, deceptive false leaders, ravening wolves, false teachers, "the blind leading the blind"---and that only because and when the sheep are not like the Bereans
  • The "they" is men and women. No women are ever called into an official church office such as and apostle, a pastor, an elder, a bishop, a "deaconness", for ministry, but are called to preach the Gospel like everyone else
1 Timothy 2:9-15
In like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with shamefacedness and sobriety; not with broided hair, or gold, or pearls, or costly array; But (which becometh women professing godliness) with good works. Let the woman learn in silence with all subjection. But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence. For Adam was first formed, then Eve. And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression. Notwithstanding she shall be saved in childbearing, if they continue in faith and charity and holiness with sobriety.

1 Timothy 3:12
Let the deacons be the husbands of one wife, ruling their children and their own houses well.

Acts 8:5
Then Philip went down to the city of Samaria, and preached Christ unto them.
  • SEE JOHN chapter 4 for a context of the Jewish/Samaritan culture
  • Preached CHRIST boldly, steadfastly, to Samaria (Gentiles)
  • The Samaritans were not considered the same to the Jews
  • Jesus commanded the disciples not to go into Samaria while He was on the earth
  • This is Acts 1:8, now out to Samaria. The Samaritans were half-breeds, outcasts who had rebelled against Jerusalem's authority by building a rival temple on Mt. Gerizim
  • Ten lepers were healed by Jesus there; only the Samaritan came back to thank Him
Luke 17:12-19
And as he entered into a certain village, there met him ten men that were lepers, which stood afar off: And they lifted up their voices, and said, Jesus, Master, have mercy on us. And when he saw them, he said unto them, Go shew yourselves unto the priests. And it came to pass, that, as they went, they were cleansed. And one of them, when he saw that he was healed, turned back, and with a loud voice glorified God, And fell down on his face at his feet, giving him thanks: and he was a Samaritan. And Jesus answering said, Were there not ten cleansed? but where are the nine? There are not found that returned to give glory to God, save this stranger. And he said unto him, Arise, go thy way: thy faith hath made thee whole.

2 Kings 17:29
Howbeit every nation made gods of their own, and put them in the houses of the high places which the Samaritans had made, every nation in their cities wherein they dwelt.

Matthew 10:5-6
These twelve Jesus sent forth, and commanded them, saying, Go not into the way of the Gentiles, and into any city of the Samaritans enter ye not: But go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.

Acts 8:6-7
And the people with one accord gave heed unto those things which Philip spake, hearing and seeing the miracles which he did. Unclean spirits, crying with loud voice, came out of many that were possessed with them: and many taken with palsies, and that were lame, were healed.
  • No signs, no tongues, no wonders, just healing and deliverance (v.7)
  • People being in agreement, obedient to the faith
  • Healing and deliverance, as today, for the lost pagan Samaritans and no tongues
  • This tells us also that there are some today, maybe many, who are ill from these same exact diseases precisely because they are possessed.
  • This is not for a sign, these miracles. They were needed by "many of them"
  • Paying close attention to the text, it specifically does not say "all of them"
Acts 8:8
And there was great joy in that city.
  • This is the joy of the LORD, and it is great, and throughout a whole city
  • They have witnessed the stoning of Stephen, been hauled men and women from their homes, imprisoned, beaten, threatened, scattered
  • Their response? Preaching the Word, having the joy of the LORD
Nehemiah 8:10
Then he said unto them, Go your way, eat the fat, and drink the sweet, and send portions unto them for whom nothing is prepared: for this day is holy unto our Lord: neither be ye sorry; for the joy of the LORD is your strength.

Luke 15:7-10
I say unto you, that likewise joy shall be in heaven over one sinner that repenteth, more than over ninety and nine just persons, which need no repentance. Either what woman having ten pieces of silver, if she lose one piece, doth not light a candle, and sweep the house, and seek diligently till she find it? And when she hath found it, she calleth her friends and her neighbours together, saying, Rejoice with me; for I have found the piece which I had lost. Likewise, I say unto you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner that repenteth.

Acts 8:9
But there was a certain man, called Simon, which beforetime in the same city used sorcery, and bewitched the people of Samaria, giving out that himself was some great one:
  • "But"............here comes the opposition
  • As the Bruce Lee movie is called, "Enter the Dragon"
  • Revivals always stir up the enemy and enemies of God, who appear as "angels of light"
  • There is always, invariably, a "certain man" in every fellowship, who seems to want to fit in, but is "a wolf in sheep's clothing"
  • First it is Revival, then always comes opposition
    1. A burden to pray
    2. Demon manifestations (ie. false miracles, signs, wonders)
    3. Opposition from "leaders in authority"
    4. A revealing of the "wheat" and "tares" and subsequent sifting
    5. Many Christians finding the will of God for their lives through the Word of God
  • Simon deceived people with miracles, sorcery, bewitching them, not by the Holy Ghost, but by the enemy, drawing attention to Himself and many to himself. They have been "Simonized"
  • Some things never change
  • Today we have people dressed nicely, seemingly very expensively and humble, who do this, in front of large audiences, claiming they are the only one or ones there who can do this......they give out that they are "some great one".
  • His name for himself is always good for marketing, even today
  • Simon is full of Simon
  • Simon Magus is the person from whom the word "Simony" comes
simony ('sa?m?n?)

— n
Christianity the practice, now usually regarded as a sin, of buying or selling spiritual or Church benefits such as pardons, relics, etc, or preferments

[C13: from Old French simonie, from Late Latin simonia, from the name of Simon Magus ]

John 4:20
Our fathers worshipped in this mountain; and ye say, that in Jerusalem is the place where men ought to worship.


SIM'ONY, n. [from Simon Magus, who wished to purchase the power of conferring the Holy Spirit. Acts 8] The crime of buying or selling ecclesiastical preferment; or the corrupt presentation of any one to an ecclesiastical benefice of money or reward. By Stat. 31 Elizabeth, c. 6. severe penalties are enacted against this crime.

Simon Magus” or "Simon the Magician" is the name given to him by many historians and eyewitnesses of this man in ancient history.
Justin Martyr (ca. AD 150), a Samaritan—identifies this particular Simon as a native of Gitto, Samaria, he, among other things, wrote a gnostic work called "The Great Revelation" . Legends speak of him as traveling with a goddess while he professed himself to be Jupiter, The Son, the Father, the Holy Spirit, one ancient legend says that Simon the Sorcerer confronted Peter in Rome, performed an act of “levitation” and other various false miracles. According to the story, Peter prayed to the LORD to stop the levitation, Simon fell to the ground, broke leg bones in many places and had to be carried off!

Matthew 7:15-23
Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles? Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit. A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit. Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire. Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them.
Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.

2 Corinthians 11:13-14
For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ. And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light.

Ecclesiastes 9:18
Wisdom is better than weapons of war: but one sinner destroyeth much good.

Acts 8:10
To whom they all gave heed, from the least to the greatest, saying, This man is the great power of God.
  • Pagans performing false miracles are still revered as gods and unsaved religious people often confuse gods with God.
  • "from the least to the greatest would include the leaders of the town and the poorest, with (perhaps) the leaders of the synagogue?
  • This shows that "signs and wonders" are not proof of God doing a work
Acts 8:11
And to him they had regard, because that of long time he had bewitched them with sorceries.
  • "Bewitching" and "sorcery" are repeated here, giving emphasis
  • The esteem and praise of the world goes to false prophets, false miracle workers, deceivers.
  • Having longevity furthers the cause as well, adding "validity" to the "ministry"
  • This is because the world lacks the Holy Spirit for discernment
  • Simon has "the subtlety of the serpent" and is selling SNAKE oil
Genesis 3:1
Now the serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden?

1 John 4:1
Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world.

Matthew 7:15
Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.

Matthew 24:4-5
And Jesus answered and said unto them, Take heed that no man deceive you. For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many.

Matthew 24:24
For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect.

Acts 8:12
But when they believed Philip preaching the things concerning the kingdom of God, and the name of Jesus Christ, they were baptized, both men and women.
  • They believed and then Simon "believed"; watch the difference
  • God is much more powerful to save than the enemy to distract and deceive.
  • In order to be baptized, the prerequisite is that they must be saved. Baptism is not salvation; it is getting dunked.
  • His "ministry" continues today
Isaiah 63:1
Who is this that cometh from Edom, with dyed garments from Bozrah? this that is glorious in his apparel, travelling in the greatness of his strength? I that speak in righteousness, mighty to save.

2 Timothy 3:5
Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.

Acts 8:13
Then Simon himself believed also: and when he was baptized, he continued with Philip, and wondered, beholding the miracles and signs which were done.
  • Simon will become shortly proof that "believing" is what many do, but what they believe about Jesus is wrong
  • His baptism will simply make him all wet
  • He is seeking after a sign and looking for more power, not more of the true God
  • He has a form of godliness, but denying the power (source) thereof
Acts 8:14
Now when the apostles which were at Jerusalem heard that Samaria had received the word of God, they sent unto them Peter and John:
  • Peter was sent with John....unlike a pope, he was sent by others, as a servant
  • This appears to be new to them, and everyone in Jerusalem wants to know how this can be so------Samaritans getting saved? What?
Acts 8:15
Who, when they were come down, prayed for them, that they might receive the Holy Ghost:
  • Peter and John were sent to give them the Holy Ghost. One of the mistakes too many today make is in assuming that this was not a one time event, unique, and that the Holy Ghost today is given by "the laying on of hands".
  • These people BELIEVED (like Simon), but were not saved ,like many today who claim to be Christian because of culture, genealogy, church attendance, works, etc.
  • However, in Acts chapter 2 and chapter 10, the Holy Ghost was given WITHOUT the laying on of hands
  • They and everyone else in chapter 8 do not speak in tongues-ever.
  • There is no initial evidence via an outward sign of "the baptism of the Holy Ghost” here, either
2 Peter 1:1
Simon Peter, a servant and an apostle of Jesus Christ, to them that have obtained like precious faith with us through the righteousness of God and our Saviour Jesus Christ:

Acts 2:38
Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.

Acts 10:44
While Peter yet spake these words, the Holy Ghost fell on all them which heard the word.

Acts 8:16
(For as yet he was fallen upon none of them: only they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.)
  • The "he" is proof that the Holy Ghost is not an "it" but a "he"; a person.
  • Again, this is a transitional time in history, and needs to be treated as such
  • If a person does not believe that, then today this would still be happening
    1. Old Testament: Believers not indwelt as today and those who were could have that same Holy Spirit leave them (Psalm 51:11, 1 Samuel 16:14, 18:12)
    2. In the Old Testament, the spirit of the LORD came upon certain people to empower them to do His divine will (Othniel-Judges 3:10, Gideon-Judges 6:34, Jepthah-Judges 11:29, David-1 Samuel 16:13)
    3. In Acts, the Holy Spirit had already been given to the apostles by Jesus in John 20:28, others were simply Old Testament believers who did not receive the Holy Spirit as of yet
    4. Today, no one lays hands on someone to receive the gift of the Holy Spirit
    5. We are indwelt by the Holy Spirit
    6. Like salvation, the giving of the Holy Spirit is free to all who ask in sincerity, as Jesus said it would be
    7. This in Acts was for them in a unique time in history
    8. He is exposed to Christianity and is highly impressed by what he sees, and knows he can use it for his business-all he has to do is ask how it works and then incorporate it
    9. Head knowledge, going along with the flow of those multitudes being saved
Acts 8:17
Then laid they their hands on them, and they received the Holy Ghost.
  • In verse fifteen, they received the Holy Ghost with just a prayer; no laying on of hands
  • In John 20:22, the apostles received the Holy Ghost without Jesus laying hands on them
  • In Acts 6:6, hands were laid upon Philip, Prochorus, Nicanor, Timon, Parmenas and Nicolas a proselyte of Antioch, but they did not receive the Holy Ghost
  • In Acts 13:2-3, hands were laid on Paul and Barnabas, no Holy Ghost given
  • The "laying on of hands" now is just a personal touch God desires for us, there is no miraculous power in anyone in particular's hands
  • Here they receive the Holy Ghost and do not speak in tongues.
John 20:22
And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and saith unto them, Receive ye the Holy Ghost:

John 14:16-17
And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever; Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you.

Acts 6:5-6
And the saying pleased the whole multitude: and they chose Stephen, a man full of faith and of the Holy Ghost, and Philip, and Prochorus, and Nicanor, and Timon, and Parmenas, and Nicolas a proselyte of Antioch: Whom they set before the apostles: and when they had prayed, they laid their hands on them.

Acts 13:2 As they ministered to the Lord, and fasted, the Holy Ghost said, Separate me Barnabas and Saul for the work whereunto I have called them. And when they had fasted and prayed, and laid their hands on them, they sent them away.

Romans 8:9
But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.

Romans 8:11
But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwelleth in you.

1 Corinthians 2:11-12
For what man knoweth the things of a man, save the spirit of man which is in him? even so the things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of God. Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God.

Ephesians 1:13-14
In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise, Which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, unto the praise of his glory.

Acts 8:18
And when Simon saw that through laying on of the apostles' hands the Holy Ghost was given, he offered them money,
  • Simon today would have a five thousand member church and be on TV, radio and do book tours.
  • You cannot buy a gift; this is "works" "salvation" at its finest
  • More proof that he is not even saved, even though he BELIEVED and was even BAPTIZED
Acts 8:19
Saying, Give me also this power, that on whomsoever I lay hands, he may receive the Holy Ghost.
  • Power over people, power over situations, power over nature, power over objects
  • "More Power!" is not just a saying on th TV show "Home Improvement"...fallen man always seeks it
Acts 8:20
But Peter said unto him, Thy money perish with thee, because thou hast thought that the gift of God may be purchased with money.
  • Again, the Holy Ghost is a gift, freely given
  • Simon is more like a modern day Benny Hinn or Kenneth Copeland, etc
Luke 11:13
If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children: how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him?

Acts 8:21
Thou hast neither part nor lot in this matter: for thy heart is not right in the sight of God.
  • Simon, according to Simon Peter, believed, was baptized, continued with Philip, wondered, beholding the miracles and signs which were done
  • Simon behaved just like every other Christian there, with just a tad more curiosity
  • And is UNSAVED (phony, charlatan, wolf among sheep)
  • Those on the inside hurt the Church; those on the outside attack it, making it grow
  • Judas was on the inside and betrayed the LORD Jesus, not the Romans, not the Jews, but a chosen apostle who passed for the real thing
  • Simon is a Trojan Horse...........the enemy always joins the Church and often pastors it
Acts 8:22
Repent therefore of this thy wickedness, and pray God, if perhaps the thought of thine heart may be forgiven thee.
  • Or............maybe he really IS saved, and just needs to ask God to forgive him?
  • In either case, this fascination with the laying on of hands to receive the Holy Ghost is to him a trick, which he must change his mind about
Acts 8:23
For I perceive that thou art in the gall of bitterness, and in the bond of iniquity.
  • Peter, it appears, has declared that this Simon is religious but in fact is still NOT SAVED
    1. Does not understand how salvation is given
    2. Does not understand the Holy Spirit is a gift
    3. Wants to use his money for the power of the Holy Spirit
    4. Does not understand the role of the Holy Spirit
    5. Wants simply to have power to do miracles
    6. Needs to be forgiven by God
    7. Needs to repent of wickedness
    8. In the gall of bitterness-bitter about what?........being told he cannot buy and sell spiritual gifts?
    9. In the bondage of sin
Acts 8:24
Then answered Simon, and said, Pray ye to the Lord for me, that none of these things which ye have spoken come upon me.
  • Simon does not even want to be saved..........he just does not want the consequences of his sin to affect his business, life, etc.
  • No telling if Simon is saved or ever got saved. We only have what we see
  • Over time we are to bear fruits of the spirit, not simply BELIEVE
Matthew 7:16-20
Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles? Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit. A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit. Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire. Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them.

James 2:17-19
Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone. Yea, a man may say, Thou hast faith, and I have works: shew me thy faith without thy works, and I will shew thee my faith by my works. Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble.

Acts 8:25
And they, when they had testified and preached the word of the Lord, returned to Jerusalem, and preached the gospel in many villages of the Samaritans.
  • This starts to where is today, to the ends of the earth, via mass media, missions, etc.
Acts 8:26
And the angel of the Lord spake unto Philip, saying, Arise, and go toward the south unto the way that goeth down from Jerusalem unto Gaza, which is desert.
  • The angel of the LORD: Jesus Christ
  • Verses 26-40, a new ministry, to Ethiopia
  • There is, at this time in Acts, nothing there but desert to go to
  • We will now witness the opposite of Simon, an unnamed eunuch who is genuine
  • This is a son of Ham (chapter 8)
  • Saul will be a son of Shem (chapter 9)
  • Lastly, Cornelius gets saved, a Japethite (chapter 10)
Acts 8:27
And he arose and went: and, behold, a man of Ethiopia, an eunuch of great authority under Candace queen of the Ethiopians, who had the charge of all her treasure, and had come to Jerusalem for to worship,
  • He did not waver, stumble, question, ponder, wait, and had no other instructions
  • This is similar to the faith of Abraham in Genesis 12
  • This is the Secretary of the Treasury, in a limousine, with a chauffeur
Genesis 12:1
Now the LORD had said unto Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father's house, unto a land that I will shew thee:

Acts 8:28
Was returning, and sitting in his chariot read Esaias the prophet.
  • The verses following show that he was probably praying for God to show him the truth of the book, and to open his eyes to understand the text
Acts 8:29
Then the Spirit said unto Philip, Go near, and join thyself to this chariot.
  • This is the answer to the prayer of "Open my eyes, LORD. What are you trying to say here? Who is this man Isaiah speaks of?"
  • The Holy Spirit is still leading the Ethiopian eunuch through Isaiah 53....
  • The chariot already has the man in need of salvation, the Word of God, and just needs a man of God and the Spirit of God to complete the salvation message
Acts 8:30
And Philip ran thither to him, and heard him read the prophet Esaias, and said, Understandest thou what thou readest?
  • Again, the question came from God, as this is not what one asks a complete stranger upon meeting them
  • This is full force, focused and Spirit-led evangelism
Romans 10:17
So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.

Acts 8:31
And he said, How can I, except some man should guide me? And he desired Philip that he would come up and sit with him.

1 John 2:27
But the anointing which ye have received of him abideth in you, and ye need not that any man teach you: but as the same anointing teacheth you of all things, and is truth, and is no lie, and even as it hath taught you, ye shall abide in him.

John 16:13
Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come.

1 Corinthians 2:14
But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.
  • Any person can guide another person in any direction. like the blind leading the blind
  • Only the Holy Spirit can guide into all truth
Acts 8:32-33
The place of the scripture which he read was this, He was led as a sheep to the slaughter; and like a lamb dumb before his shearer, so opened he not his mouth: In his humiliation his judgment was taken away: and who shall declare his generation? for his life is taken from the earth.
  • This is Isaiah 53, the Messianic, Suffering Servant chapter of prophecy
  • He is at this point reading at verse seven, presumably having read the first six verses
  • Whether Jew or a Gentile, he cannot understand the Scriptures he is reading without some man to tell him via the Holy Spirit (more important, most important)
  • Jews today do not study this, and think it means the nation of Israel, suffering for the sins of the Gentiles and not a person.
  • This is despite the fact that the Jews consider Isaiah to be their greatest prophet
  • No place in Scripture does it mention Israel suffering for anyone other than their own sin(s), and suffering does not recompense and reconcile; it simply hurts!
  • This is mentioned in some places, such as Leviticus 26:14-41, Isaiah 17:10-14, Jeremiah 30:7.
  • They are very vehement that this was settled as Israel before Jesus's day and the Christians have it all wrong.
  • The discussion is hot, hotter, hottest. Even the implication of insinuating that one needs to be a "completed Jew" (Messianic believer) is insulting and offensive to Jews.
  • It is a HE, not a "they"
  • It is a sheep, not a flock
  • Israel's life was never taken from the earth, and there has always been a remnant. Besides that, God clearly, repeatedly called it, strangely enough, "A REMNANT" and "THE REMNANT"
  • It requires allegorizing the Scriptures in nearly every verse without a context to conclude that this is not one man
  • There is no context for such allegorizing
  • There is a good, thorough, objective biblical study on Isaiah 53: here
Acts 8:34
And the eunuch answered Philip, and said, I pray thee, of whom speaketh the prophet this? of himself, or of some other man?
  • Without knowing about Jesus Christ, via the Holy Spirit, this verse is meaningless and obscure
  • Even the Ethiopian Eunuch sees that this is about "Himself or some other man" and not a nation
Acts 8:35
Then Philip opened his mouth, and began at the same scripture, and preached unto him Jesus.
  • Isaiah fifty three is a fantastic place to preach Jesus to either a Jew or a Gentile.
  • This is the established method for 2,000 years now, unchanged
Acts 8:36
And as they went on their way, they came unto a certain water: and the eunuch said, See, here is water; what doth hinder me to be baptized?
  • It is highly probable that Phillip, after his conversion, told him about the baptism by water, not baptism of the Holy Spirit
  • The implied answer to his question is, "NOTHING"
Acts 8:37
And Philip said, If thou believest with all thine heart, thou mayest. And he answered and said, I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.
  • No speaking in tongues, no laying on of hands, no "be being filled by the Holy Spirit", no circumcision-just belief, faith, trust, salvation
  • This is how we get saved today as Gentiles
  • This very important, key and essential verse is MISSING from so many modern versions, it goes from Acts 8:36 directly to verse 38
  • This separates this man from Simon, who had head knowledge and did not believe with all his heart, but was half-hearted, double-minded
  • Had the Ethiopian eunuch said he did not believe with all of his heart, Phillip's job was done, he would not have baptized him, and would have left the man there, because he cannot save him or force him to believe
James 1:8
A double minded man is unstable in all his ways.

Acts 8:38
And he commanded the chariot to stand still: and they went down both into the water, both Philip and the eunuch; and he baptized him.
  • This is the only acceptable baptism..........immersions in water
  • This baptism is the only one that represents the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ-and your old life dying and new life being resurrected as well!
Acts 8:39
And when they were come up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord caught away Philip, that the eunuch saw him no more: and he went on his way rejoicing.
  • Things essential to the salvation and then the obedient walk of a man are present here:
    1. The Holy Spirit leading (v. 25)
    2. Obedience to the Spirit (v. 26)
    3. The Word of God (v. 30-34)
    4. The Word of God explained as the Gospel (v. 35)
    5. The Word of God mixed with faith leading to action (v. 38)
  • This one person getting saved led to 2,000 years, at least into 1970, when Haile Selassie (brutal murderous dictator) left the doors open for missionaries
  • He rejoiced over his salvation, with the angels
Luke 15:7
I say unto you, that likewise joy shall be in heaven over one sinner that repenteth, more than over ninety and nine just persons, which need no repentance.

Luke 15:10
Likewise, I say unto you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner that repenteth.

Acts 8:40
But Philip was found at Azotus: and passing through he preached in all the cities, till he came to Caesarea.
  • Came under Assyrian rule
  • The Philistines brought the stolen Ark of the Covenant to Ashdod (Azotus)
  • After this their god Dagon fell on the threshold and his head and hands fell off
  • The Ashdodites tried to destroy the rebuilding of Nehemiah with the Arabians,
Joshua 11:22
There was none of the Anakims left in the land of the children of Israel: only in Gaza, in Gath, and in Ashdod, there remained.

Joshua 13:3
From Sihor, which is before Egypt, even unto the borders of Ekron northward, which is counted to the Canaanite: five lords of the Philistines; the Gazathites, and the Ashdothites, the Eshkalonites, the Gittites, and the Ekronites; also the Avites:

Joshua 15:46-47
From Ekron even unto the sea, all that lay near Ashdod, with their villages: Ashdod with her towns and her villages, Gaza with her towns and her villages, unto the river of Egypt, and the great sea, and the border thereof:

1 Samuel 5:1
And the Philistines took the ark of God, and brought it from Ebenezer unto Ashdod.

Nehemiah 4:7
But it came to pass, that when Sanballat, and Tobiah, and the Arabians, and the Ammonites, and the Ashdodites, heard that the walls of Jerusalem were made up, and that the breaches began to be stopped, then they were very wroth,

Amos 1:8
And I will cut off the inhabitant from Ashdod, and him that holdeth the sceptre from Ashkelon, and I will turn mine hand against Ekron: and the remnant of the Philistines shall perish, saith the Lord GOD.

Zephaniah 2:4
For Gaza shall be forsaken, and Ashkelon a desolation: they shall drive out Ashdod at the noon day, and Ekron shall be rooted up.

Isaiah 20:1
In the year that Tartan came unto Ashdod, (when Sargon the king of Assyria sent him,) and fought against Ashdod, and took it;

Zechariah 9:6
And a bastard shall dwell in Ashdod, and I will cut off the pride of the Philistines.


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