“Jesus, A Miracle Worker”/The Church Persecuted and Scattered

A Christ Filled Life – Getting To Know Jesus

A great Sunday Service Today.

Church – The Greek word ekklesia which is translated “Church” means “the called out” and originally signified a group of people assembled for a civil purpose (Acts 19:32 where the word is rendered “assembly”). This word was used in the New Testament to denote the body of the faithful in Christ.

“The Church Persecuted and Scattered”, Acts 8:1) And Saul was consenting unto his death. And at that time there was a great persecution against the Church which was at Jerusalem; and they were all scattered abroad throughout the regions of Judaea and Samaria, except the Apostles. Acts 11:19. 2) And devout men carried Stephen to his burial, and made great lamentation over him. 3) As for Saul, he made havock of the Church, entering into every house, and haling men and women committed them to prison. Galatians 1:13; Philippians 3:6; 1Timothy 1:13.

Quest Study Bible – Why weren’t the Apostles scattered? The Jewish authorities undoubtedly put pressure on the Apostles as well as the whole Church. They probably felt that if they could weaken the leaders of this movement, they could affect everyone in it. This perhaps would explain why the Apostles chose to remain in Jerusalem despite the obvious danger.

“Philip in Samaria”/Acts 8:4) Therefore they that were scattered abroad went every where preaching the Word. 5) Then Philip went down to the city of Samaria, and preached Christ unto them. 6) And the people with one accord gave heed unto those things which Philip spake, hearing and seeing the miracles which he did. 7) For unclean spirits, crying with loud voice, came out of many that were possessed with them: and many taken with palsies, and that were lame, were healed. Matthew 10:1; Mark 16:17. 8) And there was great joy in that city.

Matthew Henry’s Concise Commentary – The people not only gave heed to what Philip said, but were fully convinced that it was of God, and not of men, and gave up themselves to be directed thereby.

“Simon the Sorcerer”, Acts 8:9) But there was a certain man, called Simon, which beforetime in the same city used sorcery, and bewitched the people of Samaria, giving out that himself was some great one: Acts 13:6. 10) To whom they all gave heed, from the least to the greatest, saying This man is the great power of God. 11) And to him they had regard, because that of long time he had bewitched them with sorceries. 12) But when they believed Philip preaching the things concerning the Kingdom of God, and the name of Jesus Christ, they were baptized, both men and women. 13) Then Simon himself believed also: and when he was baptized, he continued with Philip, and wondered, beholding the miracles and signs which were done. Luke 8:13. 14) Now when the Apostles which were at Jerusalem heard that Samaria had received the word of God, they sent unto them Peter and John: 15) Who, when they were come down, prayed for them, that they might receive the Holy Ghost: Matthew 18:19; John 14:13, 14. 16) (For as yet he was fallen upon none of them: only they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.) Matthew 28:19. 17) Then laid they their hands on them, and they received the Holy Ghost. Hebrews 6:2. 18) And when Simon saw that through laying on of the Apostles’ hands the Holy Ghost was given, he offered them money. 19) Saying, Give me also this power, that on whomsoever I lay hands, he may receive the Holy Ghost. 20) But Peter said unto him, Thy money perish with thee, because thou hast thought that the gift of God may be purchased with money. Acts 2:38. 21) Thou hast neither part nor lot in this matter: for thy heart is not right in the sight of God. 22) Repent therefore of this thy wickedness, and pray God, if perhaps the thought of thine heart may be forgiven thee. 23) For I perceive that thou art in the gall of bitterness, and in the bond on iniquity. Job 20:14. 24) Then answered Simon, and said, Pray ye to the Lord for me, that none of these things which ye have spoken come upon me. Numbers 21:7; 1Kings 13:6; James 5:16. 25) And they, when they had testified and preached the Word of the Lord, returned to Jerusalem, and preached the Gospel in many villages of the Samaritans.

Matthew Henry’s Concise Commentary – v9-13, Even Bad men, and those whose hearts still go after covetousness, may come before God as His people come, and for a time continue with them. And many wonder at the proofs of Divine truths, who never experience their power. v14-25 The Holy Ghost had as yet fallen upon none of these converts, with the extraordinary powers conveyed by the descent of the Spirit upon the day of Pentecost (one of the three great annual festivals). Simon Magus was ambitious to have the honour of an Apostle, but cared not at all to have the Spirit and disposition of a Christian. He was more desirous to gain honour to himself, than to do good to others. Peter shows him his crime. He esteemed the wealth of this world, as if it would answer for things relating to the other life, and would purchase the pardon of sin, the gift of the Holy Ghost, and eternal life. Our hearts are what they are in the sight of God, who cannot be deceived. And if they are not right in his sight, our religion is vain and we cannot stand in a good position with God. But it shall be forgiven upon true repentance. Amen.

More to come and God Bless You./

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