Monday, November 26, 2012

Acts 8

This chapter covers a lot. Make sure when you read it you are able to separate the different stories. This chapter mainly goes in depth about to spread of Christianity. It provides multiple examples of conversions and also talks about Saul a few times. My favorite verse of this chapter was verse 36, "As they traveled along the road, they came a to some water and the eunuch said, "Look, here is water. Why shouldn't I be baptized?" I love that attitude. The eunuch was just converted and he didn't hesitate, he immediately wanted to be baptized!

Questions:
  - What did Simon and Philip have in common? (vv. 5-11)
  - Given that the Samaritans were considered outcasts by the Jews (see Jn 4:9), why would Peter and John come to them?
  - In what ways does Simon's reaction to the apostles (vv. 18-19) show his deep misunderstanding about the Gospel?
  - Do you think that Simon's words in verse 24 reveal a change in his heart?
  - In the verse the eunuch was reading, in what ways does Jesus fit the picture of the one described there?
  - How did God pave the way for his message?
  - So far, what has been the effect of Stephen's death upon Philip? Upon the church as a whole

8 comments:

Nathan Coupleton said...

Q's
they were both Christians, and neither of them gave the Holy Spirit
Instead of being outcasts, once they were saved they were brothers and sisters in Christ
He thought God was a more powerful version of the magic he had been using and could be bought just like spell books
No I still think he didn't understand since he asked others to pray for him
One way is he was the lamb led to slaughter
He told Philip where to go and had the eunuch reading Isaiah
After Stephen died, Philip got braver and the whole church began to be persecuted

In this chapter I liked how the Gospel spread through persecution. The Pharisees thought they could stop God through persecution, but when it happened the believers spread out and witnessed to more people, even the despised Samarians

Joe Hinkle said...

I like what you said Nathan about the Pharisees thinking they could stop God through persecution, but in actuality, it only further spread The Word!

Carter said...

It said that Simon practiced sorcery. Did practice sorcery from the holy spirit to help people believe or something? Was Simon doing magic in a good way or a bad way? I just dont get it

Maria said...

Verse: Acts 8:1-3

On that day a great persecution broke out against the church in Jerusalem, and all except the apostles were scattered throughout Judea and Samaria. 2 Godly men buried Stephen and mourned deeply for him. 3 But Saul began to destroy the church. Going from house to house, he dragged off both men and women and put them in prison.

These are people who are dying because of their faith in Christ. A few weeks ago in current events we had to do a project on the persecuted church and it was so sad to see millions of people die for their faith. But then again we should rejoice when we are being killed for our faith because God will bless you and you know that there is a better place. HEAVEN!!!
Revelation 3:11
I am coming soon. Hold on to what you have, so that no one will take your crown.
I love this verse its so powerful. Main point is don't let anyone take your crown.

Jackie said...

Carter, it does not really say anywhere if the magic was good or bad. I think at first Simon might of been practicing bad magic because his heart was in the wrong place. He claimed to be someone great and because of what he could do and what he said everyone believed him and called him "The Great One". It is also important to remember that the people in Samaria did not really know God until Philip went there and told them about Jesus. Then once the people heard the story of Jesus they realized that Jesus is the only Great One and Simon realized this too.

Once Simon saw that it was only with Jesus that you could truly free people and heal them he realized that the type of magic he was doing would not allow him to do that. So he offered to pay the Apostles money for that power.
So I really liked what Peter said back: But Peter replied: "May your money be destroyed with you for thinking God's gifts could be bought!" Acts 8:20 (NLT)
This verse talks about how you can't buy your relationships on earth. So why would you be able to buy your relationship with God. Simon was jealous of what the Apostles could do and he wanted to be able to do it too, but the reason the Apostles could do these things was because of their amazing relationship with God. That made Simon upset.

Carter Hinkle said...

I think that Simon was Using magic from the devil to get power and he was pride full.
According to Nathan, he was using the devils power.

Kitty @ Four Toms and a Mom said...

On Simon's Story

I love what Carter brought up about Simon and how Nathan and Jackie clarified it.

Consider reading Simon's story in Chapter 8 of Acts as a lesson in moving ones faith from your head to your heart. Simon had a history of making money with his parlor tricks. It could be he was using demonic power for his tricks. It could be they were illusions. It says he got saved, but his question to Peter makes you wonder-- he's offering money to Peter to be able to do these tricks through the Holy Spirit-- doesn't sound like he was sincere at that point, but nevertheless, when Peter replies to him how this is no trick - this is the Holy Spirit-- Then Simon starts to learn. He says, “Pray to the Lord for me so that nothing you have said may happen to me.”

This is where you see that Simon moves his understanding from his head to his heart. For Simon it wasn't that he was insincere when he first said he believed and got saved, but that it was a learning process. He went from using demonic powers for financial gains to being amazed by the power of the Holy Spirit--enough to follow and agree with it (head knowledge), to being rebuked for wanting to buy it (rebuking causes one to question and bring knowledge from your head to your heart) to finally asking Peter to pray for him (now it's in his heart).

Question for you guys, where are you in this process- is your understanding of salvation in your head still, or has it moved to your heart? If it's in your heart, when did it move there, and what helped you?

Kitty @ Four Toms and a Mom said...

Look at the pattern of who the apostles are ministering to….

In Acts 1:8, Jesus instructs the apostles
"But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.”

Then, when the day of Pentecost comes, in Acts, when those tongues of fire come down, immediately the Jewish people come to watch and are amazed and 3000 get saved.

That's Judea--

Next comes Sumaria. That's where we are in Acts 8. Simon the Magician is a Samaritan.

Wonder where they'll he'd now? To the end of the earth!!!