28th February 2014

Let Your Study Be Full Of Ideas 

Now an angel of the Lord said to Philip, ‘Go south to the road – the desert road – that goes down from Jerusalem to Gaza.’”
Acts 8:26 (NIV UK)

World Book Day is celebrated next week on the 6th March, and one of the greatest books of all time is the Bible. Isn’t it amazing how one passage of Scripture can explode with ideas? Think of the account about Philip in Acts 8:26-40.

God sometimes asks groups of people, like churches, to accomplish his tasks but at other times he works through one individual. Philip was sent by God: we too are sent by God to do the work of Christ.

Then note he was transported into the desert. Philip did not know that the Ethiopian was about to arrive: we don’t always know what opportunity God may give to us.

The story goes on that God told Philip to go to the Ethiopian and Philip obeyed without hesitation. Is that our response to God? Philip initially had to run to keep up with the chariot until the Ethiopian requested Philip to sit with him. As we share the Gospel sometimes we are put out of our comfort zones. It is interesting that the Ethiopian understands the need for someone to guide him in the explanation of the scriptures just as often we need today.

Also, Philip sits side by side with him as he explains Christ to him. Let’s not distance ourselves as we explain Jesus to others. Philip relates to the Ethiopian by beginning to expound the Gospel from where the Ethiopian is. Even so we should begin at the contact’s points of interest or need, not by parading our own interests and needs, as we present the Gospel.

The response of the Ethiopian to the explanation of Scripture is one of personal repentance. Our response to Scripture should be personal too and should lead us to change and repent. After his baptism the Ethiopian went on his way rejoicing just as we can do as we allow the Spirit to convict us and lead us into personal change. After Philip’s interaction with the Ethiopian, God brought him into other opportunities for the Gospel: so for us the work of the Lord is never done.

It is a fantastic passage of the Bible, isn’t it? Let your Bible study be full of ideas and imagination.

Thank you, Father, for the Bible, and please help it to inspire us and direct us as we follow your son, Jesus Christ.  In Jesus’ name.

Study by James Henderson


bible1About the Author:
James Henderson is the National Ministry Leader for Grace Communion International in the UK and Ireland.  On the 1st March James is speaking at our Great Baddow congregation. You are welcome to attend any of our local congregations.  For details of your nearest local congregation, check on our website, www.wcg.org.uk under the ‘Churches’ tab, or ring +44 (0)1858 437099.

Email:  admin@daybyday.org.uk

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