Saul Ravages the Church
1And #ch. 7:58; 22:20 Saul #See Rom. 1:32 approved of his execution.
And there arose on that day a great persecution against the church in Jerusalem, and #ch. 11:19; See Matt. 10:23they were all scattered throughout the regions of Judea and Samaria, except the apostles. 2Devout men buried Stephen and made great lamentation over him. 3But #ch. 9:1, 13, 21; 22:4, 19; 26:10, 11; 1 Cor. 15:9; Gal. 1:13; Phil. 3:6; 1 Tim. 1:13 Saul was ravaging the church, and entering house after house, he #[James 2:6]dragged off men and women and committed them to prison.
Philip Proclaims Christ in Samaria
4Now #ver. 1those who were scattered went about preaching the word. 5#ch. 6:5Philip went down to the city#8:5 Some manuscripts a city of Samaria and proclaimed to them the Christ. 6#[John 4:39] And the crowds with one accord paid attention to what was being said by Philip, when they heard him #John 2:23and saw the signs that he did. 7For #See Mark 16:17, 18unclean spirits, crying out with a loud voice, came out of many who had them, and many who were paralyzed or lame were healed. 8So #ver. 39; See John 16:22there was much joy in that city.
Simon the Magician Believes
9But there was a man named Simon, #ver. 11; ch. 13:6 who had previously practiced magic in the city and amazed the people of Samaria, #See ch. 5:36saying that he himself was somebody great. 10They all paid attention to him, from the least to the greatest, saying, #ch. 14:11; 28:6 “This man is the power of God that is called #[ch. 19:27, 28]Great.” 11And they paid attention to him because for a long time he had #ver. 9; [ver. 13; Gal. 3:1]amazed them with his magic. 12But when #ch. 16:33, 34; 18:8; Mark 16:16 they believed Philip as he preached good news #ch. 1:3about the kingdom of God and the name of Jesus Christ, #ch. 16:33, 34; 18:8; Mark 16:16 they were baptized, both men and women. 13Even Simon himself believed, and after being baptized he continued with Philip. And #ver. 6, 7 seeing signs and #ch. 19:11 great miracles#8:13 Greek works of power performed, #[ver. 9]he was amazed.
14Now when #ver. 1 the apostles at Jerusalem heard that #ch. 1:8Samaria had received the word of God, they sent to them Peter and John, 15who came down and prayed for them #ch. 2:38that they might receive the Holy Spirit, 16for #[ch. 19:2] he had not yet #ch. 10:44; 11:15 fallen on any of them, but #ch. 19:5; [ch. 2:38; 10:47, 48; Matt. 28:19; 1 Cor. 1:13, 15; Gal. 3:27]they had only been baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. 17Then #ch. 9:17; 19:6; [ch. 6:6; Heb. 6:2] they laid their hands on them and #See ch. 2:4they received the Holy Spirit. 18Now when Simon saw that the Spirit was given through the laying on of the apostles’ hands, he offered them money, 19saying, “Give me this power also, so that anyone on whom I lay my hands may receive the Holy Spirit.” 20But Peter said to him, #[2 Kgs. 5:16; Dan. 5:17] “May your silver perish with you, because you thought you could obtain the gift of God #Isa. 55:1with money! 21You have neither part nor lot in this matter, for #2 Kgs. 10:15; Ps. 78:37your heart is not right before God. 22Repent, therefore, of this wickedness of yours, and pray to the Lord that, #Dan. 4:27; 2 Tim. 2:25if possible, the intent of your heart may be forgiven you. 23For I see that you are in #Deut. 29:18; 32:32; Heb. 12:15 the gall#8:23 That is, a bitter fluid secreted by the liver; bile of bitterness and in #Isa. 58:6; [Eph. 4:3; Col. 3:14]the bond of iniquity.” 24And Simon answered, #[Ex. 8:8; 9:28; 10:17]“Pray for me to the Lord, that nothing of what you have said may come upon me.”
25Now when they had testified and spoken the word of the Lord, they returned to Jerusalem, #[ver. 6-8; John 4:39]preaching the gospel to many villages of the Samaritans.
Philip and the Ethiopian Eunuch
26Now #ch. 5:19; 10:3; 11:13; 12:7, 23; 27:23; [Judg. 6:12; 13:3]an angel of the Lord said to Philip, “Rise and go toward the south#8:26 Or go at about noon to the road that goes down from Jerusalem to Gaza.” This is a desert place. 27And he rose and went. And there was an #Ps. 68:31; 87:4; Zeph. 3:10 Ethiopian, a #[Jer. 38:7] eunuch, a court official of Candace, queen of the Ethiopians, #Ezra 7:21 who was in charge of all her treasure. #[1 Kgs. 8:41, 42; John 12:20]He had come to Jerusalem to worship 28and was returning, seated in his chariot, and he was reading the prophet Isaiah. 29And the Spirit said to Philip, “Go over and join this chariot.” 30So Philip ran to him and heard him reading Isaiah the prophet and asked, “Do you understand what you are reading?” 31And he said, #See Rom. 10:14 “How can I, unless someone #John 16:13 guides me?” And #[1 Kgs. 20:33; 2 Kgs. 10:15]he invited Philip to come up and sit with him. 32Now the passage of the Scripture that he was reading was this:
# Cited from Isa. 53:7, 8 “Like a sheep he was led to the slaughter
and like a lamb before its shearer is silent,
so he opens not his mouth.
33In his #[Phil. 2:8]humiliation justice was denied him.
Who can describe his generation?
For his life is taken away from the earth.”
34And the eunuch said to Philip, “About whom, I ask you, does the prophet say this, about himself or about someone else?” 35Then Philip opened his mouth, and #Luke 24:27; [ch. 17:2; 18:28] beginning with this Scripture #See ch. 5:42he told him the good news about Jesus. 36And as they were going along the road they came to some water, and the eunuch said, “See, here is water! #ch. 10:47What prevents me from being baptized?”#8:36 Some manuscripts add all or most of verse 37: And Philip said, “If you believe with all your heart, you may.” And he replied, “I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.” 38And he commanded the chariot to stop, and they both went down into the water, Philip and the eunuch, and he baptized him. 39And when they came up out of the water, #1 Kgs. 18:12; 2 Kgs. 2:16; Ezek. 3:12, 14; 8:3; 11:1, 24; 43:5 the Spirit of the Lord #See 2 Cor. 12:2carried Philip away, and the eunuch saw him no more, and went on his way rejoicing. 40But Philip found himself at Azotus, and as he passed through he preached the gospel to all the towns until he came to Caesarea.