EXPERIENCING THE WORD: ACTS 8 ANALYSIS

God had to direct Phillip to meet the Ethiopian Eunuch in the desert to demonstrate to us the import and the impact of spiritual understanding! The light the Ethiopian Eunuch received opened the way for the gospel in Africa. As Isaiah 9:8 shows us, one revelation from the word can impact a generation for life: "The Lord sent a word into Jacob and it hath lighted upon Israel"

When our understanding dawn our miracles are bound to come. This is why when God wanted to invade the continent of Africa with the light of the word he sent Phillip into the desert to an Ethiopian Eunuch who was traveling back to his place. And God sent Phillip for one purpose, to bring this eunuch to the place of understanding the word. This passage of scripture in Acts 8:26-39, highlights the power of understanding!

We look at Acts 8:26-39 to show us the power of understanding and what it does.
"And the angel of the Lord spake unto Philip, saying, Arise, and go toward the south unto the way that goeth down from Jerusalem unto Gaza, which is desert. And he arose and went: and, behold, a man of Ethiopia, a eunuch of great authority under Candace queen of the Ethiopians, who had the charge of all her treasure and had come to Jerusalem for to worship, Was returning, and sitting in his chariot read Esaias the prophet. Then the Spirit said unto Philip, Go near, and join thyself to this chariot. And Philip ran thither to him, and heard him read the prophet Esaias, and said, Understandest thou what thou readest? And he said, How can I, except some man should guide me? And he desired Philip that he would come up and sit with him. The place of the scripture which he read was this, He was led as a sheep to the slaughter; and like a lamb dumb before his shearer, so opened he, not his mouth: In his humiliation, his judgment was taken away: and who shall declare his generation? for his life is taken from the earth. And the eunuch answered Philip, and said, I pray thee, of whom speaketh the prophet this? of himself, or of some other man? Then Philip opened his mouth, and began at the same scripture, and preached unto him, Jesus. And as they went on their way, they came unto a certain water: and the eunuch said, See, here is water; what doth hinder me to be baptized? And Philip said, If thou believest with all thine heart, thou mayest. And he answered and said, I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. And he commanded the chariot to stand still: and they went down both into the water, both Philip and the eunuch; and he baptized him. And when they were come up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord caught away Philip, that the eunuch saw him no more: and he went on his way rejoicing. But Philip was found at Azotus: and passing through he preached in all the cities, till he came to Caesarea.

Let's take a quick spiritual analysis of some salient portion of this scripture. The summary of it all was of a man struggling with the word until understanding came. However as soon as understanding came, light dawned and the miracle of salvation was birth!

•'Understandest thou what thou readest'(vs30) - This was the first question Phillip ask the Eunuch showing that reading the word is not what is important but much more understanding the word. Scriptural profitability comes by reading and understanding.

•'how can I except SOME MAN guide me'(vs31)- Sometimes we need some men to guide us in our quest for spiritual understanding. The Holy Spirit sends an agent of understanding to us, especially men of the five-fold ministry (Jeremiah 3:15-16, Ephesians 4:11-13). This is their principal assignment: 'to make all men see' as Paul will often say! (Ephesians 3:9). Jeremiah 3:15-16 tells us this, "And I will give you pastors according to mine heart, which shall feed you with knowledge and understanding. And it shall come to pass, when ye be multiplied and increased in the land, in those days, saith the Lord, they shall say no more, The ark of the covenant of the Lord: neither shall it come to mind: neither shall they remember it; neither shall they visit it; neither shall that be done any more"

People will only increase relative to the understanding they have received and our increase in the world is relative to the understanding we have received from the word! As soon as the pastors opened up the understanding of the people there was a corresponding increase in their lives.

This is the truth in that Jeremiah 3:15-16. The church was once called poor but as understanding came the tables were turned! Today the world is no longer bothered about the poverty of the church but her wealth! And really, I like that! Renewed understanding can change any man's story!

•'Phillip began at the same scripture '(vs35) - This is what understanding does, understanding will give new meanings to old scriptures, fresh revelations from old information! Understanding gives you a fresh perspective of the word! It was the same scripture that the eunuch was struggling with that was the key to his salvation, but until understanding dawn he was stuck! Been stuck sometimes is a product of ignorance and not lack of effort.

•'See'(vs36) - that's what understanding does, it makes you see what you have never seen before! The veils are removed and you see beyond the words! Understanding here converts words to pictures so that you don't just hear, you see! Remember David said in the Psalms, "in thy light shall we see light". The Ethiopian eunuch here saw light and darkness flees!

•'What hindered me from been baptized'(vs36)- At the point of understanding you don't ask what shall we do, you know what to do! In Acts 2:38 the listeners were pricked in their heart, pricked, but they didn't entirely come to the point of light. So they asked, 'men and brethren what shall we do'. Here in Acts 8, the Ethiopian Eunuch knew what to do, before Phillip could say anything, he had spelled out the steps! The power of understanding at work! He knew the next step was baptism, and he demanded it. Look at that portion of scripture again, 'what hindered me from been baptized?' and that suggests to me that at the point of spiritual understanding every spiritual hindrance to accessing the blessings of the word are removed!

vs37-38 - Phillip said if you believe you can be saved and the man said I believe and was saved! Before faith came understanding came! Here we see that conviction in the word (faith) is first preceded by comprehension of the word (understanding)! Spiritual understanding is what brings the spiritual enlightenment that leads to the birth of supernatural faith which is what procures our salvation! The Psalmist said in Psalm 36:9 that ‘in thy light shall we see light’, understanding is what gives us that ability to see lights in the light!

No wonder the wise man of Proverbs 13:15 said that good understanding gives favor and without it, life is hard and is a drag! Without understanding spiritual things are hard! Understanding simplifies the word, the word simplifies our lives! From today, every complication in your life is simplified in the name of Jesus. Amen!

 

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