Now the passage of the scripture that he was reading was this: ‘Like a sheep he was led to the slaughter, and like a lamb silent before its shearer, so he does not open his mouth. In his humiliation justice was denied him. Who can describe his generation? For his life is taken away from the earth.’
The eunuch asked Philip, ‘About whom, may I ask you, does the prophet say this, about himself or about someone else?’ Then Philip began to speak, and starting with this scripture, he proclaimed to him the good news about Jesus. As they were going along the road, they came to some water; and the eunuch said, ‘Look, here is water! What is to prevent me from being baptized?’ He commanded the chariot to stop, and both of them, Philip and the eunuch, went down into the water, and Philip baptized him. When they came up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord snatched Philip away; the eunuch saw him no more, and went on his way rejoicing. But Philip found himself at Azotus, and as he was passing through the region, he proclaimed the good news to all the towns until he came to Caesarea.
Devotion by Julia Shiver
In the passage just before this, Philip is commanded by the Holy Spirit to tell this man about the prophet, Jesus, who fulfills the scripture in Isaiah that the man is reading. Philip gives testimony to all that Jesus did and to the resurrection that followed. The court official is so moved by this ‘good news’ that he asks Philip to immediately baptize him so that he, too, may be in relationship with Christ.
Every encounter we have with another human is a chance to tell the story of Jesus and the new covenant he brings about in God. We’ve all heard the quote to “at all times preach the gospel; when necessary, use words.” I get what this statement is trying to say. We proclaim the wonder of Jesus by our actions and deeds. But the words matter just as much. Philip knew that, to reach this man, he had to meet him in the scripture that he already knew so that he could hear the ‘new’ good news of Christ.
So make time in your life to read the scriptures and the commentaries that help us understand them. Meet with others to discuss and study the word. Then when the time comes to tell your own story of Christ, you will have the words needed to reach someone who needs to hear them.
Dear God, I thank you for all the people in my life who have helped me to understand your word. Amen.