Revival in a Desert

September 24, 2021 Preacher: Gareth Franks Series: Acts - The Gospel in Motion

Topic: The Gospel, Christian Living Scripture: Acts 8:26–40

So far in our study of Acts, we have seen Jerusalem and, to a degree, Judea evangelised. In our previous study we saw Philip take the gospel into Samaritan territory. God blessed his efforts as many came to faith in Christ and were baptized.

In out text today, we now see the gospel going, in accordance with Acts 1:8, “to the end of the earth.” We don’t know for sure the time frame, but it would seem that right in the middle of this revival in Samaria, the Lord sent an angel to tell Philip to leave that region. He was to travel to a deserted road that led south from Jerusalem to Gaza. God arranged a meeting there between Philip and one man, an Ethiopian eunuch who was traveling home after worshiping in Jerusalem. God opened this man’s heart and Philip led him to faith in Jesus Christ.

The word of God keeps going out and God keeps bringing people in. Luke is writing this record of the early church history to a man named Theopholus. It’s as if Luke wants to continually remind him that this is God’s pattern. God’s people keep speaking the word and God keeps bringing people in.

The gospel in Jerusalem started with the conversion of 3,000 souls. In Samaria, a city-wide crusade saw the advance of the gospel. But the gospel to the uttermost started with a single individual on a quiet desert road. And yet that one person was used by God to impact his entire continent with the gospel. Philip acted locally, but impacted the world globally.

If we are simply faithful with the gospel at home we can be sure that God will use us to reach other nations with the gospel. God’s people keep speaking the word and God keeps bringing people in. Let's be faithful to do our part; plant, water, fertilize, dig weeds and trust God to provide the growth in the hearts of people.

 Discussion Questions

  1. What are some practical ramifications of relying on God’s sovereignty in the process of evangelism?
  2. Is being a cross-cultural missionary a special gift? Are only some called to go to foreign lands with the gospel? How can a person know that call?
  3. How can we know whether God is prompting us to talk to a particular person about Christ? How can we get into the topic?
  4. How much pressure should we put on people to believe in Christ? Where’s the balance between urgency and letting the Lord work in His time?

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