Chair Time Reflections - November 12, 2018
Three Keys to Sharing Jesus
Posted by: Josh Larrabee
Sermon Text: Acts 8:4-40
Focus Verse: “34 The eunuch asked Philip, “Tell me, please, who is the prophet talking about, himself or someone else?” 35 Then Philip began with that very passage of Scripture and told him the good news about Jesus.” Acts 8:34-35
After the death of Stephen, the message of Jesus started to rapidly disperse throughout the region. The Christ-followers in Jerusalem were being driven out of the city by their opponents which, in an ironic turn of events, helped spread the message even more. Those who were scattered continued to tell people of Jesus wherever they went. One of those people was Philip who was appointed a deacon in chapter six. In chapter eight, verses 26-40, he has a divine encounter with an Ethiopian eunuch and from that encounter, we see three important insights that can be applied today as we share the message of Jesus with others.
First, we must have open ears and eyes for divine appointments that the Spirit prompts us towards. Philip had been preaching to crowds but now, he was to go after the one who the Spirit pointed to. In our walk with God, we must be in tune with the Holy Spirit, as he is our guide and helper. If we feel him nudge us towards someone, we should be obedient and engage with the individual. Sure, it might be awkward at first, but God has already ordained the meeting. Having the Spirit as our Helper, we do not need to worry about what we shall say for the Spirit will be our guide. Notice in verse 30 that Philip did not slowly approach the Ethiopian or hesitate, but he “ran”. There was no doubt in his mind as to what he was to do. Are we so in step with the Spirit that we run to the lost without hesitation?
Second, we must walk alongside those who are seeking Jesus. Throughout the New Testament, new believers are referred to as newborns, not being able to eat solid food, but nursing on spiritual milk. The progression of a believer is similar to growing into an adult. Children need guidance and direction from those who are wiser in order to mature. New believers are in similar situations. Guidance and direction is needed from more mature believers if the new convert is to grow into Christlikeness. The Ethiopian eunuch could not understand the meaning of the passage he was reading. He needed guidance from a more mature believer. Philip was able to explain it to him which lead to the greater story of God’s redemption through Jesus. The Bible can be a difficult text to understand. If you are having difficulty, find someone to go through it with you who has walked with God for a time. They will be more than happy to help you grow and develop into a mature believer. Upon understanding what the passage in question was about and believing in Jesus, the eunuch was baptized and brought into the family of God. There is no greater joy than seeing someone who was once lost, being baptized and washed clean of their former life, and being brought into a new life with the family of God.
Lastly, keep sharing with others. After the eunuch was baptized, the Spirit took Philip to the next town to continue preaching. Sharing the story of Jesus with others is invigorating and once you do it, you are not going to want to stop. Continue telling people God’s story of redemption through Jesus Christ and continue telling your story of how Jesus has changed your life. Your story is a powerful testimony that God can use to draw people to himself. Paul uses a gardening metaphor in 1 Corinthians 3:6 for our role in bringing people to Christ. He says, “I planted the seed in your hearts, and Apollos watered it, but it was God who made it grow.” When we tell people of Jesus, we plant a seed in their hearts and then we and/or others water that seed as they progress in knowing Jesus. God does the ultimate work though in changing their hearts and bringing them into new life. Paul says a couple verses later, “What’s important is that God makes the seed grow. The one who plants and the one who waters work together with the same purpose. And both will be rewarded for their own hard work. For we are both God’s workers.” May we continually partner with God and with each other as we tell people about the love of Jesus!
Scripture Meditations for this week: