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Jul 16, 2017
One Interested Sinner
Series:

"One Interested Sinner"

Acts 8:26-35

July 16, 2017

Pastor Roger Redmond

Strange as it may be too the unsaved; the truth remains that only sinners will be saved.  And even stranger to the unsaved is that only saved people go to heaven.  Tit 3:5  "Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost; Tit 3:6  Which he shed on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Saviour;" After all it was Jesus who said, "......They that are whole have no need of the physician, but they that are sick: I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance." Mar 2:17. There will be people who miss heaven because their hope for heaven is based on personal deeds and not on the Word of God and the testimony of Christ.

In this world's economy, success is measured by quantity; in other words, the more you have the greater you are in our society.  I don't know how you measure greatness and I am not sure anyone does. We know from the Bible, when Christ comes, His reward is with Him to give to every man according to his work.   And that is for the saved.

The unsaved will carry no significance into eternity. Isaiah 65:19. So what have you achieved if you have gained all but yet you were lost?  Mat_16:26 " For what is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?" What has a person profited if no home in heaven awaits them?  Or to the saved what have you profited if empty handed you stand before Christ at the JSOC?  Therefore greatest is evaluated by Christ. So who is greatest in the Kingdom of God?

We have a story before us about the importance of one interested sinner. It is evident the LORD wanted us to have this story. "..... and preached the gospel in many villages of the Samaritans."  There is no doubt other people were saved but we don't have their story.  But God gave us this account about "One Interested Sinner"  This message contains three (3) major thoughts"

1.  The Interest of the Sinner,

2.  The importance of the Servant,

3.  The internal working of the Holy Spirit.  Let us read Acts 8:26-35

The Interest of the Sinner: He was religious but not satisfied.  He was a sinner and uncertain about his standing with the LORD. Act 8:27-28 " And he arose and went: and, behold, a man of Ethiopia, an eunuch of great authority under Candace queen of the Ethiopians, who had the charge of all her treasure, and had come to Jerusalem for to worship," "Was returning, and sitting in his chariot read Esaias the prophet." But did not understand the gospel but had a great interest, Act 8:31  "And he said, How can I, except some man should guide me? And he desired Philip that he would come up and sit with him."

"May we think about the Word Interest for a Moment"

Definition of interest: "To concern; to affect; to excite emotion or passion, " from Noah's Webster's 1828 dictionary.

Just plain old concern for one's own soul. eternal destiny, our eternal significance.  In our present time, Instead of concern we have unconcern.  The interest is in having fun or entertainment.  I think one of the reasons God gave us this story is to show us the need to have an interest in eternal things: our relationship with Christ. To know we are saved, to be ready to die. To be ready to die is to be ready to live. (Illustration Allen & Steve).  

The truth about eternal things must stir our interest if we are to be blessed, 

Exo 3:4  "And when the LORD saw that he turned aside to see, God called unto him out of the midst of the bush, and said, Moses, Moses. And he said, Here am I."

The LORD saw Moses and God called to Moses: by name twice!  Moses knew the voice and said "...Here I am". The LORD is concerned about the one as He is the masses. He spoke to Moses and He responded to the interest of The Ethiopia Man. He was interested enough to want to Know!

Christ is found by the hounding sinner, (will not stop until he knows) 1Ch_28b ".... if thou seek him, he will be found of thee; but if thou forsake him, he will cast thee off for ever."  The invitation is to come, Rev 22:17  "And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely." This man was seeking the LORD through the light he had.  Act 8:32  "The place of the scripture which he read was this, He was led as a sheep to the slaughter; and like a lamb dumb before his shearer, so opened he not his mouth:" Act 8:33  "In his humiliation his judgment was taken away: and who shall declare his generation? for his life is taken from the earth."

Christ is found by the helpless sinner. It is when you come to the end of yourself effort you find Him, "And he said, How can I, except some man should guide me? And he desired Philip that he would come up and sit with him. " Acts 8:31.  We was not ashamed to ask for help.

Christ is found by the Hearing Sinner. He heard the preaching of the Gospel and was saved.  Act 8:37  "And Philip said, If thou believest with all thine heart, thou mayest. And he answered and said, I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God".

There must be someone who brings the truth of Christ

Rom 10:14  "How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher?"

Second, there is the importance of the servant. Act 8:35  "Then Philip opened his mouth, and began at the same scripture, and preached unto him Jesus." .  Two things of utmost importance:  1)  The message. 2)  The Servant, (God uses His own).  There must be someone to deliver the message.  Let's look at the Servant first because he is mention first in verse 35.

  • · He was a follower of Christ, a disciple of Christ.  In short he was a person who had taken up his cross and went after Christ.
  • · He was a deacon.  Regardless of our place of service.  I believe, and it is God's expectation, for His own to be doing something external, visible for Him.
  • · He carried the message of Christ.  In our vocation, in our labor of love, in our visible place of service the purpose for it all is the gospel of Christ.

As Stewarts of God we will be held accountable for faithfulness, 1Co_4:2  "Moreover it is required in stewards, that a man be found faithful." We have things God has put us in charge of, or an overseer of,  things we are to manage: our time, our emotions, our mind, our deeds (works), our finances, our vows (things we said unto to the LORD ( we would do).  All of these are to be done as faithful.

Phillip had many works to do for the LORD but there was one purpose for it all and that was to carry the message of Christ. Second let note the message.  It is the message of Christ that people need!

The message is given in the Word of God.  The Bible is the text book of the Church. Acts 8:32. "The place of the scripture which he read was this, He was led as a sheep to the slaughter; and like a lamb dumb before his shearer, so opened he not his mouth:"

Please note 8:33 "In his humiliation his judgment was taken away: and who shall declare his generation? for his life is taken from the earth."

"In his humiliation..." He was made low - through no fault of His own! But by our sin, 2 Cor. 5:21. He was a made laughing matter to those for whom He came.  Just go to the cross and listen.  "...his judgment was taken away..." He was tried as a criminal and was denied the right to justice.  He did not speak for himself.  The depths of His humiliation is much greater than addressed here:  The Perfect Lamb of God took our sin and died as our sin bearer. His life was taken from the earth.  He sits at the Father's right hand .  Hebrews 1:3.

A question is asked that must be answered:

".... and who shall declare his generation?" Who will tell the truth about Him?  Who will explain His Humiliation?  Who will take His side?  Who will stand in His place and be identified with Him?

The man had enough interest in the welfare of his soul to ask "And the eunuch answered Philip, and said, I pray thee, of whom speaketh the prophet this? of himself, or of some other man?" Acts 8:34.

So Philip stood in Christ stead and took Christ's part and declared His truth, Act 8:35  "Then Philip opened his mouth, and began at the same scripture, and preached unto him Jesus." Act 8:26  "And the angel of the Lord spake unto Philip, saying, Arise, and go toward the south unto the way that goeth down from Jerusalem unto Gaza, which is desert"

A person can go to heaven without health, wealth, fame, fortune, a great name and without any other thing but cannot go without Christ.

Who will take His part - If not you who?

No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day. John 6:44

Third the inter working of the Spirit, Act 8:26  "And the angel of the Lord spake unto Philip, saying, Arise, and go toward the south unto the way that goeth down from Jerusalem unto Gaza, which is desert." It is the angel of the Lord here and in 8:29 it is the Spirit that is directing! Why are there two and both at the direction of the Father? " For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus;" It is the Father who has loved us and saved us.  It is He that has all power.  Rom 4:24  "But for us also, to whom it shall be imputed, if we believe on him that raised up Jesus our Lord from the dead;" Rom 4:25  "Who was delivered for our offences, and was raised again for our justification."

"The use of the angel of the Lord as a messenger is reminiscent of his role in the Old Testament (2 Kgs 1:3, 15). It is not clear why the angel is replaced by the Spirit as a divine messenger in verse 29 (cf. 5:19; 10:3; 12:7–23; 27:23); in Jewish thought the two appear to have been closely associated (23:9). What is important is that in this way Philip’s journey and the subsequent action are seen to have been instigated by God and thus to have been part of his intention. The church did not simply ‘stumble upon’ the idea of evangelizing the Gentiles; it did so in accordance with God’s deliberate purpose. Philip was directed to go toward the south"Marshall, I. H. (1980). Acts: an introduction and commentary (Vol. 5, pp. 170–171). Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press.

The divine instinct in the spirit of man is to worship.  Disobedience in the matter of worship is a learned disobedience, Mat 13:15  "For this people's heart is waxed gross, and their ears are dull of hearing, and their eyes they have closed; lest at any time they should see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and should understand with their heart, and should be converted, and I should heal them."

The truth is quite simple: if you can shut your ears to hearing you can open your ears to the truth.  If you can shut your eyes to the truth you can open your eyes to the truth.  Joh 3:19  And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. Joh 3:20  For every one that doeth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved. Joh 3:21  But he that doeth truth cometh to the light, that his deeds may be made manifest, that they are wrought in God.

The problem is not with the Spirit of God but with Self - Sin and Satan.  There is a loss of interest in Eternal Things.  You have but to read the seven letters to the seven churches.

You see the lack of interest in personal worship, you see it in personal devotion, you see it in personal service, you see it in personal sacrifice.

The Bible teaches us that being saved is a present matter. When we believe, we receive eternal life. Once we believe, we receive. There is no need to wait or to hope. Salvation is not something that happens after death, but is a present matter. Since believers are already saved (John 5:24), unbelievers are already condemned John 3:18.

Every believer can know whether or not he has eternal life. People often think, I can only hope that I am saved, and I can only know if I am saved after I die or at the time of judgment.’ This is not the teaching of the Bible. The Bible teaches that a person can know whether or not they has eternal life in this age.  And further more there is no General Resurrection to determine the saved and the lost.

He who believes has eternal life, is justified, has peace, and is saved. We only need to ask ourselves whether or not we have believed on the Lord Jesus for eternal life. If we have not believed, we will perish. If we believe, we  are a people who have eternal life. He who believes has eternal life, John 6:47. When we believe, we have eternal life. We know that we have eternal life not because we think or we feel that we do, but because God tells us so. 1 John 5:11-13. 

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