April 23, 2018
Acts 8:32-40…“He asked, ‘Do you understand what you are reading?’ 31He replied, ‘How can I, unless someone guides me?’ And he invited Philip to get in and sit beside him.” vss. 30b-31
Visitors to the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem, are sometimes surprised to see that there is an Ethiopian Orthodox Chapel and Monastery included in the complex. It’s been easy for mainline Christians to forget that the gospel took root in Ethiopia hundreds of years before it reached Germany or Norway. Many trace the origins of that thriving community to the Ethiopian eunuch mentioned in Acts. According to the story, it was the deacon Philip, guided by the Holy Spirit, who initiated the contact. The eunuch, traveling by chariot, had been studying Isaiah as he rode along but wasn’t understanding it. He needed a guide–and Philip was glad to help. Many of us get the eunuch’s dilemma. It’s easy to pick up a bible and read, but often we won’t have the foggiest notion of what a particular passage means. Even the most learned of us need guides to help us understand things like context and literary style. How good it is when we can find a willing mentor who can unpack the intricacies of scripture and help us understand. Sometimes our eyes are opened and new insights flood our thirsting spirits. Of course, we need to be careful about who we welcome into our chariots as there are fraudulent teachers everywhere. But when we find someone that we can trust, it’s a massive blessing, and our hearts will be enriched.
Thought for the Day: Who is my scriptural guide?