Writings on Christianity

Acts 8:26-40 Sermon

Here’s my sermon outline for Acts 8:26-40, preached at Cross of Christ Fellowship in Naperville. Audio here.

        Acts 8:26-40 ‘Philip’s Ministry Continued’

INTRO: God calls all kinds of different people into His kingdom.
        -Young, Old, Rich, Poor, Educated, Uneducated. Different cultures and ethnicities.
                    -Acts shows God’s heart: He wants a kingdom full of lots of different people who have Jesus as their Lord
                                -Mission starts in Jerusalem, but always expanding: Judea & Samaria and to end of the Earth.
-The call of God comes through Christians who share the gospel.
        -Christians speak the gospel, and those called by God respond and enter in the kingdom and eternal life!
Last week: God used Philip the evangelist to preach gospel to Samaritans                                  
        -Many believed and gospel led to joy and spiritual life.
Today: God used Philip to preach the gospel to an individual: a foreigner of Israel who was eunuch
         -By God’s grace, the kingdom is continuing to expand and reach more people!
                    -Shows us: God desires all kinds of people in His kingdom.
                     -Shows us: God uses his people who proclaim his gospel to call others into the kingdom.
 Since God calls all kinds of different people into His kingdom, let us share the gospel with all kinds of people!

Philip the Faithful Evangelist (8:26)
Philip: one of the 7 mentioned in Acts 6 to lead a ministry to Jerusalem widows
           -After persecution broke out the church scattered, and Philip went north and preach the gospel to Samaria
                    -Lots of Samaritans became Christians!
                                Today: we see that God has more work for Philip. This time it is to an individual.

God leads Philip in an unusual way to an unusual location for gospel ministry (26)
        -God’s unusual leading: an angel shares the message (26)
                    -Angels are real, and God uses them to help his people: then and today
        -Philip is led to an usual location for gospel ministry (26b)
                    -“dessert place”: may have been perplexing
                                -Commentators note: how we as Christian experience God’s leading often in similar ways
                                            -Why did God bring me to this place? This situation?
                                                        –2 Cor 4:8—it’s ok to feel ‘perplexed’: we can trust God to work it out!

Philip’s Ministry to An Ethiopian Eunuch (27-39)

1. God has an individual that he wants Philip to minister to: an Ethiopian Eunuch (27-28)
        –Foreigner: Ethiopian (African, probably black)
                    -Excluded from aspects of temple worship because he was a foreigner
        –Socially Important at Home: Court official of Candance, queen of the Ethiopians, in charge of ‘all her treasure’
                    -Likely rich, but certainly socially important in Ethiopia.
        -Worshipper: Possibly a Gentile convert, or diaspora Jew
                     -Reading Scripture (Isaiah), mostly likely aloud [nearly everyone read aloud then]
        -Physically Different to Most People: Eunuch
                    -Partially or fully castrated: often kings would have these individuals in charge of harems
                                -Temple worship prohibited them from full access to temple.
                     -NOTE: 5x Luke tells us he is a Eunuch, but zero times his name.
                                 -Perhaps, it is because we are to see promises of Isaiah 56:3-8 have come to pass!
                                             -God has a heart for the outsider.

APPLICATION: God calls the Outsiders or nobodies (1 Cor 1:26-27):
-We should not write off the outsider or ‘unlikely’ person, but lovingly share gospel with all kinds of people.
                                -QUESTION: Who have you written off?
                     -Who have you said, ‘too old, too young, too into this or that…’
         -We don’t know who God is calling, but our task is the same: preach the gospel to everyone!
                    -Jesus said, ‘My sheep will hear my voice’ (John 10:27).

2. Philip shares the gospel with the Eunuch (29-35)
        -Spirit-led Philip (29)
                    -God leads his people today through providence and by His Spirit to share the gospel in love with others.
                                -We can pray: God fill me with the Holy Spirit, and lead me to share the gospel.        
        -Philip took advance of opportunity of Isaiah reading to start interaction (30)
                    -We should be aware of opportunities to engage gospel conversations as well.
                                -Surely, we can learn to be savvier in our evangelism and courageous.
         -The Eunuch is open and teachable and ready to learn from Philip! (31)
                    -God has been working in his heart
                                -God’s Word is powerful, still changes lives today (Hebrews 4:12)
        -Scripture Passage: Isaiah 53! (32-33)
                    -Eunuch, just happened to be reading a Messianic prophecy about Jesus!
                                -Jesus: ‘sheep led to the slaughter’ (cross); ‘silent’ (not reviling)
                                            -Justice denied him at cross: He had no sin (see 2 Cor 5:21)
                                 -‘Life taken away’=Jesus died a real death on the cross in our place.
        -Eunuch’s Question: Who is this about? (34)
                    -CLEAR and EASY opportunity for Philip to now explain the gospel.
                                 -Sometimes opportunities for evangelism are like this, and should take them.
                                             -‘How did you become a Christian?’
        -Philip Faithfully Shared the gospel (35)
                    -Philip began with the Isaiah passage, then ‘told him good news about Jesus’
                                -Gospel really is GOOD NEWS!
                                            -May we remember that, and hear it again ourselves.
                                –QUESTION: Are we ready like Philip, to point people to Jesus from different passages of Scripture?
                                            –Let’s be ready to share ‘reason for the hope within us’ (1 Peter 3:15)

3. The Eunuch Believes and Is Baptized (36-38)
-Eunuch believes and wants to be baptized!
                    -Luke leaves out some of details, but clearly the Eunuch believed in Jesus and was ready to be baptized
                                -Baptism is for those who have believed! If you are a Christian, you ought to get baptized.
        -Providentially, there was water (though dessert area, commentators note patches of water)
                    -Philip baptizes the eunuch!

4. Joy for the Eunuch and More Evangelism for Philip (39-40)
        -Supernatural Transportation for Philip! (39a)

                    -Strange to us, but God is God and powerfully chose to do this.
                                -Perhaps its partly why Luke included it: it was an amazing thing that happened
        -JOY for the Eunuch (39b)
                    -Went ‘on his way rejoicing
 APP: We all want joy, but only God can give true joy that lasts.
                     -GOSPEL: Jesus saves us from idols, that we might have everlasting joy
        -More ministry for Philip (40)
                    -Azotus=20 miles or so away
                    -Philip keeps preaching the gospel wherever he goes until he makes it Casearea!
                                -About 20 years later he still there, now with a wife and four daughters (21:8)

1. God’s Heart for the Eunuch: God calls all kinds of different people to Himself.
        -Let’s not write off any kind of person, but pray and faithfully share the gospel!
2. God Uses His people to Call Out a People to Himself
        -Kingdom of God expands as God’s people share the gospel in the power of the H.S.

Since God calls all kinds of different people into His kingdom, let us share the gospel with all kinds of people!

By Tom Schmidt

Christian, husband of Rach, Church Planter,musician,

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