North Anderson Baptist Church
Wherever You Go, Proclaim Christ!
Locations & Times
Expand
  • North Anderson Baptist Church
    2308 N Main St, Anderson, SC 29621, United States
    Sunday 10:30 AM
The book of Acts is the story of the church of Jesus Christ and the leadership of the Holy Spirit as He guides the disciples and church leaders reach people with the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ and to establish local congregations of believers. There are many characters in the book of Acts but Dr. Luke mostly follows the ministry and life of Saul turned Paul after his conversion to Christianity on the road to Damascus. In the first part of the book we see the establishment of the church in the face of great persecution from Jewish leadership who were primarily responsible for the death of the Savior. After the death of Jesus and and His resurrection and subsequent teaching before He ascended, then Stephen comes along to challenge the Jewish leadership and is killed; at that time we are introduced to the character of Saul. That is where our Scripture today comes in.

1. Persecution of the church - Acts 8:1-3
Today’s persecution is not a new thing for the Christian church; in the first century when the church began there was great persecution. Jesus knew the church would be persecuted from the start, that is why He cautioned His followers. He knew the Jewish leadership felt that way because He had proclaimed the truth of God, that He was the Son of God and was called to save men from their sin by dying on a cross. But the most controversial event was resurrection from the dead; the Jews and the Romans could not overcome what He taught or stop His disciples from proclaiming this new Gospel of His death, burial and resurrection. In this first century the Romans became more of the persecutors of the Christian faith and not only did many Jews convert to Christianity but many Romans too, in spite of the great amount of persecution.
Looking at the scripture today, Stephen, the lay preacher, had been killed because of Jewish prejudice and hatred against him and what he believed and taught. As a result of his death, much more persecution was to come to those who believed in Jesus as Savior and Lord. Because of the death of Stephen many of those who believed in Christ left the confines of Jerusalem, mourning Stephen as they went, out into the world around them, Judea and Samaria. The interesting thing was that the apostles did not leave, they stayed in Jerusalem, inspite of the persecution. The Christians that stayed in the area were found out and were arrested and put in prison by one named Saul. Acts 8:1 says that Saul approved of the death of Stephen and then went out to destroy the church itself. In the 12th chapter of Acts we read that the disciple James, John’s brother, was put to death by the sword at the orders of King Herod.
Radical religious views seek to persecute others who do not believe like they believe, hence we have today Christians being beheaded, blown up, burned alive and crucified for their faith, not just in the Middle East but in many countries in the East as well. Persecution is alive today and threatens Christians and other minority religious beliefs in the world.
2. Proclaiming the Gospel wherever they went - Acts 8:4-8
The central figure that Luke speaks of in this passage is Philip, not the apostle but the deacon. Acts 6:3 says that Philip and the others chosen to serve the church body were men full of the Holy Spirit and wisdom. What we see of Philip here and later in this chapter will tell that tale so well about him. Not only did Philip go and proclaim the Word of God but so did many of the other Christians, not just the ones which are named. The Gospel was beginning to be spread all around but not by ministers or just apostles but by lay people who loved Jesus and sought to tell His story.
Bob Parker told our men’s Bible study group the other week that he had the privilege to lead a man in Africa to the Lord Jesus. This man was blessed by God and he was given a desire to share the Gospel with others even in another village. When he went there, he was able to lead many to Christ, who in turn then moved out from their village to lead others to Christ and set up many churches. That sounded like the book of Acts to me! Amen, Bob!
One of the things that is declared in these verses is that the gifts that were given to Jesus’ followers were being used to proclaim His Name to a lost world in need of a Savior. With Philip’s ministry, he also saw many miracles and the crowds who followed him responded to the power that they saw and the words they heard. Verses 7-8 tell us that great joy came to the city because of the healing of so many who were sick of various diseases. We have many disciples of Jesus, not preachers, just regular Christians like you, go around where they live as well as other places and seek to tell their story of salvation and new life in Christ. Could that be you one day?
3. Proclaim the Gospel by telling your story

Can’t you just imagine that Philip told how he became a Christian and how Jesus changed His life through faith? I would like to have heard the messages that he preached to the people of Samaria where he was. What did he tell them beside his personal testimony of faith in Jesus Christ? He spread the Gospel, the story of Jesus and what He taught His followers and then Philip told of how Jesus died on the cross and when they took Him down how they buried the dead body of the Savior. But wait, I can hear him now pause and having those who are listening, on the seat of their chairs… maybe they were standing, but anyway after waiting a moment or just a long pause, he told them about the third day!!! He told them of the resurrection of the Son of God! Dear friends, even today the resurrection has to be the key to the whole Gospel of Jesus! His words had to come true, He had to be killed and buried but there is no real story of salvation without the resurrection of the Son of God from the dead.
So, what do you tell people or what do you “proclaim” to others around you about your Christian faith? In talking to another person about Jesus, give them time to tell their story, what their life is like and where they are now in this world and what they believe about God. When you give them time and allow them to speak and you have sought to listen carefully, then you have earned the privilege to tell your story. When you tell them your salvation story then tell them about Jesus and who He is to you and all the world. Tell them how you were saved and changed by Christ. Give them a chance to say they might like to do what you have done. But regardless, do not argue or push but just proclaim the truth.
Our hope and prayer is that people will see the truth of Jesus and God will set them free from their sin and give them a new life.
Starting this September, we as a church on Sunday mornings, will go through a series of how to be a witness for the Lord Jesus Christ. Begin now and share your story with those who you know and you will be ready.
Today, if you want someone to teach you how to do that, come forward and let me know and we will set up a special time for you to personally learn from a trained leader how to tell your story.

Invitation

Dear friend if you are reading this by way of the internet please know that you are loved and cared for. If you have no relationship with God the Father through Jesus Christ His Son, then I invite you to trust Him by faith and receive Him as your personal Savior. Jesus Christ died on the cross for the sin of everyone in the world that they may have eternal life. All of us have sinned and all are guilty before Almighty God who made us to have fellowship with Him. But sin broke that ability to have a relationship and Jesus has restored the possibility to know God personally through His sacrifice. Please know that if you will seek God and turn from your sin and pray He will respond with His love and give to you a personal relationship through your belief in His Son and the sacrifice He made just for you. He will call for a change in your life too. He wants you to follow Him, not the world, not your own desires, but to follow Jesus. That brings a life change when you turn from sin and self and by faith believe in Jesus Christ as your Savior and Lord. There is no Savior without Him being Lord of your life. Your willingness to change by following Him daily in your life will be the proof of your faith. When life throws its curves your way and you have found yourself broken by others or by the world let us introduce you to the only One who can help you…Jesus! You can write or call the office and we will follow up by contacting you. Office phone number is 864-225-2575 and the website address is www.northandersonbaptist.com and the physical address is 2308 N. Main St., Anderson, SC 29621. Dear friend if you are a believer and you have been touched by the Lord and you would like to talk to someone at the church just contact us in one of the ways you see above. If you are a believer and would like to talk about the church and your interest in being a part, please call and we can set up an appointment for you and get to know you. It would be a great pleasure to share our Lord’s love with you. This is a loving church and you are important to us, so please let us know what we can do for you in the Lord.Pastor Bill Rigsby

http://www.northandersonbaptist.com