Thursday, July 26, 2007

Evangelism: 7 Possibilities (#3)

The 7 possibilities were delivered to encourage the Jews for Jesus Summer Campaign volunteers last week. They speak into the 7 lies... The 7 possibilities are built around the story of Philip and the Ethiopian in Acts 8:36-40.


3. God has, at times, lead people directly.

A special moment, this is. It is early in the life of the church, and as a Jew, I suspect that an Ethiopian eunuch is the last person that Philip might think of to speak the gospel to. Maybe it’s a special moment like this that requires special prompting. V29

The Spirit told Philip, "Go to that chariot and stay near it."

This is a description of what happened, not a prescription for today.

But I wonder if a Jews for Jesus campaign in New York City is a special moment like this in reverse. And there may be some of you that know Christ's prompting in this way this week. I've never had a prompting like Philip. But you may have.

Take it.

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4 comments:

mandy (again!) : ) said...

I'm wondering, do you think it was at all possible that Phillip could have missed this prompting??

just interested because I find that when I give proper/sacrifical time to engage with God through his word/prayer and when my attitude is one of willingness I sense much stronger direction from Him as to who to move towards, what/when to speak etc than the times when I'm not quite there (!)

so...could Phillip have missed God's leading (obviously he didn't), could he have ignored it, and if so -- could the chance for the Ethiopians salvation possibly have been lost??

(sorry I know this is hypothetical, but it begs the question of principle)

thanks for posting these: has helped my thinking and doing

Justin said...

I take it at face value. Philip heard 8 words: "Go to that chariot and stay near it."

And he may have been able to ignore it (vis-a-vis Jonah), but not to miss it.

I think that this is very different to today's: "Sense of leading of God".

I have senses of lots of things. But I've not heard 8 actual words from God outside that of Scripture.

What do you think?

mandy said...

but...do we know for sure that Phillip did indeed HEAR those 8 words?? what evidence do we have that many of the leadings in scripture are indeed "audible" ?? (I'm probably not aware of something obvious!)

Also, interesting to see that:
1. an angel of the Lord told him to go south etc (v.26), but then.. 2. "The Spirit" told him to go to the chariot (v.29)
Are these different??

You say Philip couldn't have "missed" the leading because it was audible, so what about our non-audible leadings?? Possible to miss???

Justin said...

but...do we know for sure that Phillip did indeed HEAR those 8 words??

I guess not for sure. But take another read of it. The simplest reading of it was that there was 8 words (6 words in the Greek). Actual nouns, verbs, and syntax. Not a 'feeling' that he has been spoken to, but (we have no reason to think otherwise) actually spoken to.

You say Philip couldn't have "missed" the leading because it was audible, so what about our non-audible leadings??

The reason I presume is was 'un-missable' is that I assume that it was audible. I have non-audible leadings, but I don't place too much emphasis on them. But what I was referring to with Jews for Jesus was the possibility of audible leadings. And that, I haven't heard.

Also, interesting to see that:
1. an angel of the Lord told him to go south etc (v.26), but then.. 2. "The Spirit" told him to go to the chariot (v.29) Are these different??


I have never asked this question. Its a good one. I guess they are. So the question is -- why would God send an angel in the beginning, and then turn up himself to stay: "Stay near the chariot". That could be a fascinating speculation.

But angel or the Spirit, I read the text as is: Philip heard words.