Re-reading the Scripture with the Risen Lord
Epiphany MTC, NY
30. So Philip ran up to it and heard him reading the prophet Isaiah. He asked, “Do you understand what you are reading?” 31 He replied, “How can I, unless someone guides me?”
After the apostles received the Holy Spirit as promised by their Master, they went out preaching the Good News. Deacon Philip was in Samaria, preaching the gospel and baptizing the people. He was having a successful and thriving ministry in Samaria but the Spirit of the Lord was directing him to go in another direction. We read, the angel of the Lord said to Philip "go south to the road -the desert road- that goes down from Jerusalem to Gaza. (vs.26). On the way Philip encountered the Ethiopian eunuch. The eunuch was reading the book of Isaiah about the suffering Servant (Isaiah 53). Philip explained the prophesy and led the eunuch to Jesus and identified the suffering Servant as the Risen Christ. This revelation opened up a way for the eunuch to accept the truth and receive Christ and the salvation through Him. He got baptized and went on the way rejoicing.
Today's passage teaches us some important truth about evangelization. When he got the call to leave Samaria, he did not doubt it. Though he did not know the purpose of the call, he was obedient to the call. He was thorough with the Scriptures and was able to explain the prophecy and correlate it to the Risen Christ. The eunuch, a high government official was a gentile. From what he was reading it was evident that he was drawn to the God of Israel. When the truth was revealed he embraced it. God evangelizes the world through obedient Christians who explains the Scripture to the seeking souls. Holy Spirit's initiative and preparation is evident in this text. The Word of God penetrates the hearts and minds of the seeking sinner.
The conversion of the eunuch was the act of the Word of God, the testimony of the man of God and the work of the Holy Spirit. The responsibility of every Christian is to do what Philip had done. The eunuch needed someone to guide him through what he was reading. God used Philip, who obediently followed the leading of the Holy Spirit and willingly bore testimony to Jesus Christ. May we be that kind of an instrument in God's hands to lead the lost unto salvation, for the glory of God.
Father God, give us eyes to see and ears to hear when You call us to a divine appointment. Help us to be useful tools in Your hands to lead others to the Risen Christ. Amen
THOUGHT FOR THE DAY:
"Let us obediently expect great things from God and attempt great things for God." (William Carey)