May 29 – (Acts 8:1-8) We have just seen what happened to the first deacon (Stephen) in his following the Lord. In this passage, we now hear about the second named deacon (Philip). Where was he sent? Persecution was scattering the committed Christians. Do you see a purpose in this persecution? It’s amazing to me again, how creative God is. The persecution caused the Christians to scatter. That scattering spread the gospel. When you are scattered, let’s say due to health or worldly obligations, does the gospel get spread to where you go? Selah
May 30 – (Acts 8:9-25) Who was attracted to the miracles done through Philip by the power of God? He believed on Jesus and was baptized and followed Philip. Explain how he was saved but still needed some very important “renewing of the mind”. Does this apply to us as well? Did you notice in verses 21-23, Philip is operating in the gift of the word of knowledge? We just studied that last week in our study on the Holy Spirit. That gift is still given today!
May 31 – (Acts 8:26-39) Philip was being led in many ways by the Holy Spirit. We would say he was a mighty man of God. Can that kind of description be said of us today? What must we do? Are we willing to make the sacrifice? Selah
June 1 – (Acts 9:1-9) Saul is now confronted by the God he was trying to protect by persecuting the Christians. It’s amazing to me how we can have such good (and we think holy) intentions for our actions but they may be the very thing that is discouraging our brothers and sisters in Christ. Only the Holy Spirit can convict and guide us into righteous acts.
June 2 – (Acts 9:10-19 a) As I am reading these verses, I get a picture of Saul being highly esteemed ….in the worlds’ leaders’ eyes. But it is this very position that will later gain entrance to the worlds’ leaders as Saul tells of his miraculous conversion. Saul went places the other disciples would not have easily been allowed into or brought into out of curiosity. Who do we think are never reachable for Christ? They may be the very ones, that once redeemed are a “Saul turned Paul” to the world. Pray for them.
DID YOU KNOW? Ananias. There are three different men named Ananias in the book of Acts (see 5:1; 9:10; 24:1). The Ananias who was apparently the first believer to welcome Paul after his conversion is a positive example of obedience to the Lord (9:10-19).
June 3 – (Acts 9:19b-31) Because of Saul’s reputation before his conversion, the Disciples of Christ had a hard time accepting Saul. I need to explain something here that I needed clarification. It seems now that when it speaks of the apostles, it is speaking of the original disciples. The disciples are now those who accepted Christ through the preaching/ministering of the original disciples (now called apostles). So, in verses 26-27, Saul was not believed by the disciples (those converted after Christ’s death and resurrection) so one man (Barnabas) took him to the apostles (the original Disciples of Christ) who believed Saul was truly converted). In each new city, Saul seemed to have to prove himself all over again. But with Barnabas to vouch for him, he was accepted by the brethren and able to be effective in his witnessing by the telling of his testimony. Has the testimony of your conversion ever caused others to consider Christ as their Lord and Savior? All our conversions have been eternal-life-changing, for at least one person! Someone out there will relate to your testimony!
June 4 – (Acts 9:32-43) 7/2) Acts 9:32-43 ~ When Peter went to Lydda, who was healed through his ministry there? Joppa was very near to Lydda and because news spread to Joppa of the healing in Lydda, who was healed in Joppa? Do you see God’s hand fitting the puzzle pieces together? There’s more “fitting” to come!