Philip’s Preaching in Samaria

Text: Acts 8:5-24

I.         Persecution had driven Christians out of Jerusalem.

            A.        As people moved, they taught the word of God

            B.        Philip, one of the deacons mentioned in Acts 6:5, traveled to Samaria

                        1.         It says “down” because Jerusalem is at a higher elevation than Samaria.

            C.        His preaching brought large and attentive crowds

                        1.         Miracles accompanied his words, proving his words were from God

                                    a.         Demons were driven out.

                                    b.         The paralyzed and lame were healed

                        2.         His work brought a great deal of rejoicing to the city

II.        Simon

            A.        A magician who claimed greatness

            B.        People had flocked to him because of his tricks and said he had “The Great Power of God.”

            C.        His followers stopped after seeing true miracles and hearing the words of God

                        1.         Men and women heard about the kingdom of God (the church) and Jesus Christ

                        2.         They were baptized

                        3.         Including Simon

            D.        He was amazed, as everyone else, by the miracles that Philip was involved in.

III.       Word came to the apostles of the new church in Samaria

            A.        Peter and John were sent to strengthen the church

            B.        They came and prayed that the Spirit would come upon these new Christians

                        1.         This shows that the Holy Spirit did not automatically come when a person became a Christian

                        2.         This shows that not anyone could pass on the gifts of the Spirit.

                                    a.         Philip, though there, could not pass it on.

                                    b.         Two apostles from Jerusalem could.

                        3.         It required the laying of the apostles hands

            C.        When Simon saw that Peter and John could pass on the gifts of the Spirit, he wanted it as well.

                        1.         Perhaps he thought it would make him greater, since Philip could not do it.

                        2.         He offered money for the gift to pass on the Spirit

            D.        Peter rebukes Simon for thinking he could buy God’s gifts

                        1.         He has no part in the matter (God chooses)

                        2.         His heart was not right (He want to buy power)

                        3.         He needed to change and pray for forgiveness

                                    a.         Bitterness and sin had him trapped

            E.        Simon shows his change by asking Peter to pray to God for him

                        1.         This is an application of James 5:16

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