Hello everybody, and welcome in to episode 32 of the Bible 2021 podcast. We are reading Acts 8 today and our focus is on Philip style evangelism. Can you believe that we’ve already made it through ONE month of 2021? We are a daily 10 minute podcast, where we will dig in to the truth of the Word of God by reading one Bible chapter a day and discussing it. Welcome to new listeners in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Andhra Pradesh, India, London, England, Oaxaca, Mexico, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Atlanta, Georgia . Thanks for listening! Our goal this year is to encourage DAILY Bible reading, so you can jump in at any time and join with us. We want to invite as many people as possible to join us in daily Bible reading, so help spread the word and share the podcast Don’t forget about our new web-page, Bible2021.com – contact page, show notes, transcript and more – Click here for our reading plan!
Great comment on the passover by my writer friend Og:
If the Passover passage is unfamiliar to you, or if you do not see the symbolism of it, here are some scriptures to help explain why a lamb had to be slain: Lev. 14:6 And he shall kill the lamb of the trespass offering, and the priest shall take of the blood of the trespass offering, and put upon the tip of the right ear of him that is to be cleansed, and upon the thumb of his right hand, and upon the great toe of his right foot: (So a lamb’s blood is linked to forgiveness) 1 Peter 1:18-19 Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, silver and gold, from your vain conversation by tradition from your fathers; But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot:(Thus Jesus is our Lamb, forgiving our sins) Rev. 5:6 And I beheld, and, lo, in the midst of the throne and of the four beasts, and in the midst of the elders, stood a Lamb as it had been slain, having seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven Spirits of God sent forth into all the earth.(Jesus, the Lamb, will receive the ultimate glory of heaven, and will be declared worthy) Rev. 12:11 And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death.(The blood of the Lamb and the word of their testimony gives Christian Martyrs the power to overcome this world)
Great content, and thanks for further illuminating the passover, and also thanks to our friend Indiana friend Chris Atwood for sharing the Passover episode on FB yesterday!
Great chapter today. Some argue that some of the more miraculous gifts of the Spirit ceased because the miracles were done by the apostles, and were done to authenticate the written Word of God. I think to a degree, the miracles in the New Testament do indeed have an authenticating quality (see Hebrews 2:3-4) but here in Acts 8 we see Philip – a humble deacon who never wrote Scripture – performing signs and wonders. Stephen, also a deacon and a non-writer of Scripture, also performed great signs and wonders, according to Acts 6. Something to consider, I think. Our main focus, however, is on how Philip shared the gospel with the Ethiopian Eunuch, and what we can learn from it. Historically, it would seem that this is a HUGE deal, because very early on, the good news of Jesus spread about Ethiopia and to this day the Ethiopian Orthodox church remains a large group in that country. There are about 36 million Ethiopian believers in the world, compared to about 14.5 million Southern Baptists, to give you an idea of their size. We don’t know for sure that this encounter was what caused the spread of the gospel early on in Ethiopia, but it certainly looks like it did. Let’s read the chapter, and learn from Philip’s evangelism approach – because I believe it would be very fruitful in 2021 also.
So what did Philip do? Well, primarily, he was led by the Spirit – literally told where to go. When he got there, he saw this eunuch reading the Bible, and immediately engaged him in conversation – not aggressively, but very intentionally. His question wasn’t gimmicky, and it wasn’t a memorized opener, but was fairly natural, “Hey – do you understand what you’re reading?” What a great approach for us! Find somebody who is interested in God, reading about God, or talking about God, and then engage them in conversation with a question. This isn’t the only way to share about Christ – but Philip gives us a good model here. Ask a question, listen and care genuinely about the answer, and then bounce from the response to a deeper discussion of Jesus.
Let me close with a great insight from Spurgeon about Philip’s approach to this Ethiopian official:
That is the main thing; a religion that is not based upon understanding will soon come to an end. An emotional religion—one that is nothing but emotion—will be temporary and transient religion; so Philip enquired of the eunuch, “Understandest thou what thou readest?”….You may begin anywhere in the Bible, and preach Jesus, You may begin at the first chapter of Genesis, or at the last chapter of Malachi, at the first of Matthew or the last of Revelation, and still preach Jesus, for he is the sum and substance of the whole Scripture.”
C. H. Spurgeon, “Who Should Be Baptized?,” in The Metropolitan Tabernacle Pulpit Sermons, vol. 47 (London: Passmore & Alabaster, 1901), 360.
End of the Show: Bible memory verse for FEBRUARY: Acts 9:31 So the church throughout all Judea, Galilee, and Samaria had peace and was strengthened. Living in the fear of the Lord and encouraged by the Holy Spirit, it increased in numbers.
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