Introduction and Prayer
Read Acts 1:8 (out loud) 8 But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you. And you will be my witnesses, telling people about me everywhere—in Jerusalem, throughout Judea, in Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”
How should this verse play out in our everyday lives today?
Read Acts 8:26
26As for Philip, an angel of the Lord said to him, “Go south down the desert road that runs from Jerusalem to Gaza.”
How would you respond if you felt God leading you to a place for no obvious spiritual reason—for example, what would you do if you felt God say, “Leave small group right now and go to Wal-mart?”
How obedient are we to instructions if we don’t understand the why of the instruction?
Is this Philip the apostle? (No, this is Philip the Evangelist—Read Acts 6:2-6 So the Twelve called a meeting of all the believers. They said, “We apostles should spend our time teaching the word of God, not running a food program. 3 And so, brothers, select seven men who are well respected and are full of the Spirit and wisdom. We will give them this responsibility. 4 Then we apostles can spend our time in prayer and teaching the word.” 5 Everyone liked this idea, and they chose the following: Stephen (a man full of faith and the Holy Spirit), Philip, Procorus, Nicanor, Timon, Parmenas, and Nicolas of Antioch (an earlier convert to the Jewish faith). 6 These seven were presented to the apostles, who prayed for them as they laid their hands on them.
Have you been in a situation that you felt God asking you to do something difficult?
Read Acts 8:27-29
27So he started out, and he met the treasurer of Ethiopia, a eunuch of great authority under the Kandake, the queen of Ethiopia. The eunuch had gone to Jerusalem to worship, 28and he was now returning. Seated in his carriage, he was reading aloud from the book of the prophet Isaiah. 29The Holy Spirit said to Philip, “Go over and walk along beside the carriage.”
What is a eunuch? (A king would often castrate those with high authority in the court to prevent someone from potentially attempting to create a royal line.)
Often times we pray, God please use me. When God puts people in our path, do we speak up or do remain silent?
What steps could we take to bold in these situations?
Read Acts 8:30
30Philip ran over and heard the man reading from the prophet Isaiah. Philip asked, “Do you understand what you are reading?”
What can we deduce about Philip’s response to Holy Spirit when we read, “Philip ran over…” to obey what he was told?
If Philip wasn’t obedient to the non-spiritual directive to “go over and walk along beside a carriage” would he have heard the man reading Isaiah?
Read Acts 8:31
31The man replied, “How can I, unless someone instructs me?” And he urged Philip to come up into the carriage and sit with him.
What are some of the tools we have to gain a deeper understanding of God’s Word?
How do you study God’s Word?
Have you found something that makes it easier for you to stay in the habit of reading God’s Word?
What do you appreciate about studying God’s Word in a group? What are the challenges of studying in a group?
What is your favorite aspect about God’s character or nature that we find in God’s Word?
How does understanding God’s love and mercy and grace impact your obedience?
Think On This…
Is there something that God has instructed me to do that I haven’t done?