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Pastor's Sunday School Blog

Sunday School Lesson

“A Spirit Empowered Evangelist”

January 7, 2018

Acts 8:26-40

Pastor’s Notes:

Phillip, like Stephen, was one of the first deacons selected to serve the church in Jerusalem (Acts 6:1-7). The requirements, as set forth by Peter, were that they be men full of faith, and filled with the Holy Spirit. It is important to note that deacons were not called to positions of authority, but ministry; however, their spiritual qualities would suggest that they would be leaders in the church.

Phillip, continued in obedience to the call of God even after the martyrdom of Stephen. Phillip’s love for the Lord far outweighed the fear of persecution and death.

Note the shift of evangelism … from the Jews to the Samarians fulfilling the commission of Christ “Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria and the uttermost parts of the earth.”

The ultimate goal of the Great Commission is that all people will hear the Gospel.

God sees the bigger picture … Why would God instruct Phillip to leave the city in Samaria where multitudes were being saved to go into the desert? God had used Phillip to introduce the Gospel to the Samaritans, now God will use an Ethiopian to carry the Gospel to Africa (“the uttermost parts of the earth”).

Phillip may not have understood what God was doing, but he was obedient.

NOTE – It wasn’t Phillip’s skill as an apologist, but the Word of God that brought conviction to the heart of the eunuch. (See Romans 1:16; 10:17).

Phillip’s understanding of Scripture stands as challenge to the believer to “study to show yourself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth” (2 Timothy 2:15).

When the eunuch saw a pool of water he questioned Phillip about the possibility of being baptize. Baptism, as understood by the eunuch, was a symbolic act of repentance; a change of heart toward something or someone.

Note the prerequisite for baptism (Verse 37) … belief precedes baptism.

After his faith experience the Ethiopian continued on his way rejoicing

Be available and obedient to the Spirit’s prompting (Acts 8:26-29).

It is not ours to tell the Lord what we will do, but to pray, “Lord, what would you have me to do.”

“Ethiopian eunuch” – A government official representing the queen of Ethiopia.

The eunuch may have been a Jewish proselyte (converted to Judaism).

How might you respond if the Lord told you to leave where you are, especially if you are in a great place, to go to the desert (a seemingly insignificant place)?

The only thing that really matters in life is our obedience to God; the willingness to sacrifice self for the Savior.

Guide people through the Scriptures and show them Christ (Acts 8:30-35).

When sharing your faith in Christ to a lost world, it is imperative that you understand that they do not understand and need someone to guide them.

So here’s the question to consider: “How can you lead someone to understand what you don’t know?”

The passage the eunuch was reading comes from Isaiah 53

Remember in sharing your faith the ultimate goal is to bring them to Jesus.

Challenge your class to begin a systematic study of Scripture, New and Old Testament.

Can you using Scripture instruct someone as to how to be saved? Can you using Scripture show someone their sinful state, the consequences of their sin, the provision for their sin, and the plan of salvation?

Lead others to respond in faith (Acts 8:36-40).

Phillip shared Jesus through Scripture. The Spirit convicted the heart of the eunuch, who confessed Christ as Lord and Savior. Our responsibility is not to redeem, that God’s job; our responsibility is to share Jesus. If you witness your faith, you do not fail even though there is not a positive response. Failure, however, is when you fail to share.

Baptism, as understood by the eunuch, was a symbolic act of inward change. The believed and was baptized.

“Baptized” come from the Greek word, baptizo, which means to immerse. That this was immersion in water is evident because if it was pouring or sprinkling there would not have been the necessity of a pool of water … there would have water containers in the caravan if pouring or sprinkling was the proper mode. Also note the language, “and when they came up OUT of the water.”

The Order: Believe and be baptized … receive and respond …

Discuss: If baptism is not necessary FOR salvation then why be baptized? Does the Bible entertain the ideal of a non-baptized believer? See Acts 2:37-41.

NOTE – Throughout this study the importance of the Scripture and the Spirit … God uses us to share the Scripture which is used by the Spirit to convict of sin, convince of the Savior, and call to salvation.

Theological Theme: Salvation is the result of the Word of God applied by the Spirit of God.

Christological/Christ Connection: Ultimately Scripture points to death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

Missional Application: The believer’s responsibility is to follow the leadership of the Holy Spirit in sharing the Gospel of Jesus Christ (See Romans 10:13-14).

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