Week Ten - Day Four
Understand the simple message of the Gospel
Acts 8:26-38 - Now an angel of the Lord said to Philip, “Rise and go toward the south to the road that goes down from Jerusalem to Gaza.” This is a desert place. And he rose and went. And there was an Ethiopian, a eunuch, a court o cial of Candace, queen of the Ethiopians, who was in charge of all her treasure. He had come to Jerusalem to worship and was returning, seated in his chariot, and he was reading the prophet Isaiah. And the Spirit said to Philip, “Go over and join this char- iot.” So Philip ran to him and heard him reading Isaiah the prophet and asked, “Do you understand what you are reading?” And he said, “How can I, unless someone guides me?” And he invited Philip to come up and sit with him.
And the eunuch said to Philip, “About whom, I ask you, does the prophet say this, about himself or about someone else?” Then Philip opened his mouth, and begin- ning with this Scripture he told him the good news about Jesus. And as they were going along the road they came to some water, and the eunuch said, “See, here is water! What prevents me from being baptized?” And Philip said, “If you believe with all your heart, you may.” And he answered and said, “I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.” And he commanded the chariot to stop, and they both went down into the water, Philip and the eunuch, and he baptized him.
“So Philip ran to him and heard him reading Isaiah the prophet.” Unbeknownst to Philip, God had arranged this meeting between Philip and the Ethiopian. Philip was an e ective evangelist because he listened to and obeyed the Holy Spirit’s call.
The Isaiah passage began, “Like a sheep he was led to the slaughter.” In God’s per- fect plan, the Ethiopian was reading Isaiah 53 which described the sacrificial, sin- bearing work of the Jewish Messiah. Beginning with this Scripture, Philip explained how those passages were talking about Jesus.
Philip was familiar with these passages and was able to explain to the Ethiopian how they were fulfilled by Jesus. But, it took time and commitment by Philip to become familiar with them. Today, we can grow stronger in our faith if we also spend time becoming familiar with God’s word. As we become familiar with the many prophecies in the Old Testament specifically concerning the coming Messiah, and discover that only Jesus could have fulfilled them completely, we are encouraged in our faith.
Verse 35 says, “he told him the good news about Jesus.” Explaining who Jesus is and what he has done is the essence of the gospel. Philip’s role in the salvation of the Ethiopian was to trust God’s work in the heart of the Ethiopian and to share the gospel message.
- Would you say you understand the gospel? Try writing out the gospel in your own words. Use scripture to help you. For example, Isaiah 53:5-6.
- Now imagine your One Life is with you. How would you share it with them?