Acts 8:9-17 ~ “The Amazing Simon” is Amazed!

This week we were introduced to Simon (a.k.a. “Simon the Sorcerer” and “Simon Magus”), and according to Simon himself “Someone Great!” Although there is not a lot of information about Simon in the Bible, early church fathers wrote about him with enough detail that we are able to sketch his character and his beliefs and his […]

Acts 8:4-8 ~ Philip the Evangelist in Samaria

This week we observed how the stepped-up persecution of Christians in Jerusalem served as a catalyst for the spread of the good news throughout Judea and into Samaria thus fulfilling part of Jesus’ prophecy in Acts 1:8. We focused in on the first non-Judean “missionary journey” post-Resurrection: Philip’s ministry in Samaria. We concluded that this was […]

Acts 8:1b-3 ~ Persecution Initiates the Christian Diaspora

This week we focused on this brief, transitional passage that documents the first officially sanctioned persecution of Christ followers as well as what happened to Stephen’s body after his stoning (lynching) in chapter 7.  We looked at the structure of Acts noting that chapters 1-7 and 13-28 follow a single-thread narrative, whereas chapters 8-12 traces […]