Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Act 8:1-40

*Sorry about the delay. I was spending time with my family while everyone was at home again.
Chapter 8:1-4
     After Saul witnessed Stephen's death he started to pursue other believers hoping to wipe out the movement that was starting. New believers didn't want to get caught so they spread out even to the lands that they had once rejected. Something that stands out is that the apostles stayed in Jerusalem. To me that shows that they weren't going to let one man run them out of their mission. In verse 2 we see that Stephen was buried by his friends and they mourned over him. This was against tradition of how a "criminal" was supposed to be buried. Even though the people were taken from their homes and treated poorly  they still preached wherever they went.
Chapter 8:5-8
     In these verses we begin to see Philip, one of the seven deacons, begin to preach in Samaria. He performed many signs and wonders for the people.
Chapter 8:9-13
     There was a man named Simon who was known as a magician and was able to captivate his crowds. When Phillip came to his town and he witnessed what he was doing Simon was baptized and followed with Phillip.
Chapter 8:14-25
      Many people just couldn't believe the fact that the Samaritans were now followers of Christ so they asked Peter to go down there and find out. When he got there he did find people who were genuine but they had only been baptized. The Holy Spirit hadn't come on them. I think this is a good example of how actions don't save you but repentance and having the Holy Spirit take control of your life. This all was probably do to the fact that no one had told them about how to receive the Spirit and how important it really was. In verse 18 we begin to see how shallow Simon's belief was. As he began to see the things Peter was able to do he himself wanted to do it so as to improve his magic act. He was missing the whole purpose. Peter wasn't happy with him and quickly corrected him and told him he needed to repent. There is not much more said about Simon here and now where else in the Scriptures.
Chapter 8:26-40
     It was important to include the story of the eunuch here because it was another important step to the expansion of the church. Luke recalls the story of how Philip approaches the high ranking ruler in his chariot and helps him understand the scripture he is reading. After they had read and traveled together they came to some water where the man quickly announced that he wanted to be baptized. Here we are given the clear imagine that baptism is supposed to be an immersion not a few sprinkles of water.

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