26 An angel of the Lord spoke to Philip. “Go south to the desert road,” he said. “It’s the road that goes down from Jerusalem to Gaza.” 27 So Philip started out. On his way he met an Ethiopian official. The man had an important position. He was in charge of all the wealth of Candace. She was the queen of Ethiopia. He had gone to Jerusalem to worship. 28 On his way home he was sitting in his chariot. He was reading the book of Isaiah the prophet. 29 The Holy Spirit told Philip, “Go to that chariot. Stay near it.” 30 So Philip ran up to the chariot. He heard the man reading Isaiah the prophet. “Do you understand what you’re reading?” Philip asked. 31 “How can I?” he said. “I need someone to explain it to me.” So he invited Philip to come up and sit with him. 32 Here is the part of Scripture the official was reading. It says, “He was led like a sheep to be killed. Just as lambs are silent while their wool is being cut off, he did not open his mouth. 33 When he was treated badly, he was refused a fair trial. Who can say anything about his children? His life was cut off from the earth.” (Isaiah 53:7,8) 34 The official said to Philip, “Tell me, please. Who is the prophet talking about? Himself, or someone else?” 35 Then Philip began with that same part of Scripture. He told him the good news about Jesus. 36/37 As they traveled along the road, they came to some water. The official said, “Look! Here is water! Why shouldn’t I be baptized?” 38 He gave orders to stop the chariot. Then both Philip and the official went down into the water. Philip baptized him. 39 When they came up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord suddenly took Philip away. The official did not see him again. He went on his way full of joy. 40 Philip was seen next at Azotus. From there he traveled all around. He preached the good news in all the towns. Finally he arrived in Caesarea.
In this passage we get to see the ‘behind the scenes’ of how God works. There are two men involved: Philip, a follower of Jesus who has been passionately proclaiming the good news in Samaria; and an Ethiopian man, who holds a high position in the que
en’s court. The Ethiopian man is obviously seeking after God, reading the scripture and trying to understand what it means. Philip, on the other hand, has given his life to serving God, and is sharing the good news of the gospel with those who will receive it. God sees both these men, in different locations, and brings them together for His purpose. God uses Philip to reveal Jesus to the Ethiopian man, and fulfill the desire of the man’s heart to understand. God also blesses Philip, as Philip is aware Australia that God has used flex him to share the good news of Jesus Christ with the Ethiopian man. Philip partnered with God, being obedient to God’s call even when he didn’t have the whole picture… all he had was a direction to travel on a certain road… with no idea of what was coming next!
In reading this passage I am filled with a sense of excitement and expectation, God may you use me in your master plan to reach a broken and lost world. God, please help me to hear your voice and respond with complete obedience, please help me to let go of my desire to have the whole picture. Thank you Lord that you want to partner with me. Amen.
Written by Beth Waugh