April 24, 2018
Acts 8:32-40…“Then Philip began to speak, and starting with this scripture, he proclaimed to him the good news about Jesus.” vs. 35
If we were to share the good news about Jesus with someone, we probably wouldn’t start with a passage from Isaiah. It would be a lot easier to go straight to one of the gospels. But Philip didn’t have a New Testament–the gospels hadn’t been written yet. But he firmly believed that the Hebrew scriptures were a jumping off point for telling the story of Jesus’ life and he was right. Early believers had found dozens of connections, and studying those passages became a central part of Christian worship and education. It really wasn’t possible for them to know and understand Jesus’ life and teachings without looking at the scriptures that were the foundation of his ministry. Jesus was a Jew and his whole mission and ministry was guided by what he had learned from the law and the prophets. The Ethiopian listened eagerly and the chariot ride was long. When Philip wrapped up the lesson with the story of resurrection and new life, his pupil was ready to be baptized and join the community of believers. In later years, meetings like this proliferated and the gospel spread rapidly through Africa, Asia, and Europe. In every place where the good news of love and forgiveness was proclaimed hungry hearts were satisfied and thousands came to believe that Jesus is the Christ, the incarnate Word of God.
Thought for the Day: What do the Hebrew scriptures teach me about Jesus?