Acts Chapter 8:26-40
Verse of the Week
30 Then Philip ran up to the chariot and heard the man reading Isaiah the prophet. “Do you understand what you are reading?” Philip asked. 31 “How can I,” he said, “unless someone explains it to me?” So he invited Philip to come up and sit with him.
The Big Idea
Phillip and the early church obeyed Jesus even when it was uncomfortable and as a result the Gospel continued to spread and multiply.
In Acts chapter 6 we were introduced to a man named Philip. Philip along with Stephen was chosen by the disciples to go and oversee the management of distribution of food to the widows of the church. What seemed like a minor task in Jerusalem would eventually cause the Gospel to reach the areas of Samaria and then Ethiopia. This is exactly what Jesus told the disciples to do in Acts 1:8. Jesus says “and you will be my witness in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.
Philip was told by an Angel to go south towards the desert. Now, Philip had a pretty successful ministry in Samaria. Many people were coming to know Jesus through his ministry, but he obediently left that ministry to travel a desert road. On his way he met an Ethiopian eunuch. The eunuch was reading the word and as he was reading Philip was told to take another next step. He was told to go stand by a chariot. We are told that Philip ran to the Chariot meaning he was quick to obey what God was telling him to do. Traveling a desert road and standing by a chariot doesn’t seem to make sense but God had a big plan through these next steps. Philip didn’t ask questions or hesitate, he just trusted and obeyed.
What next step is God telling you to take? Even if it doesn't make sense, trust that God has a plan and it is good.
Share a time when God told you to do something that made you uncomfortable or just didn’t make sense.
As Philip obeys what the Angel told him, he finds an Ethiopian man reading in Isiah. Philip asked the man if he understood what He was reading and the man’s response was “How can I unless someone explains it to me? Philip began to explain the passage that the man was reading and then he continued to teach the man about the good news of Jesus. This is what discipleship is and what it looks like. Discipleship is meeting people where they are and then helping them get to where God wants them to go. The great commission is for every believer. It’s not just for pastors and church staff. We are ALL told to go and make disciples. Jesus said in Matthew 28:19-20 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
Many believers don’t feel that they qualify to disciple other people. Why do you think this is?
What qualifications do you think you have to possess to be a disciple maker?
Who is someone you feel like you can disciple?
Not only do we see Philip taking his next step of obedience, we also see the Ethiopian eunuch take his next step of obedience which is baptism. Again, we don’t see Philip nor the eunuch hesitate when they are told to take a next step. We see both of them have an urgency to trust and obey.
What are some things that cause us not to take our next step with Jesus? Are these things holding you back from taking your next step?
What is baptism and what is the importance of it?
Weekly Discussion Questions:
What were the key ingredients that made the early church so successful?
What was your main takeaway from this chapter?
What is our next step for this group?