Submitted by Visitor (not verified) on Mon, 07/12/2009 – 11:45
Bible Book: Acts / Handelinge
Verse: 26 – 40
Acts 8:26 – 40
The Ethiopian eunuch was a very important person (v 27). Maybe an equivalent of the modern-day Minister of Finance? He must have been familiar with very complicated financial jargon. The passage from Isaiah that he was reading was surely written in a much simpler language, so wasn’t it a bit naive of Philip asking him whether he understood what he was reading (v 30)? (It was a tradition in those days to read aloud). But the eunuch did, surprisingly, not understand what he was reading (v 31). He emphatically expressed his need for assistance. This is amazing! Such an important man asking for help! This is humility. How many of us today would have shown our vulnerability to a total stranger as the eunuch had done?
The answer to the question on who this person was that the prophet Isaiah was talking about (v 34) may be obvious to many churchgoers and Bible readers today. But there is one important thing to remember! This eunuch, who for the first time in his life understood who Jesus was, immediately took action (v 36-38). Right after Philip had preached the good news, the eunuch asked to be baptised in the water beside the road they were travelling on.
Without doubt there are many people today who, like the eunuch, read the Scriptures without understanding. But how many times have we initiated action in our churches when we are convinced that we have a better understanding of something (e.g. the plight of people living with HIV and Aids?)
A little more than a month ago we were commemorating the death and resurrection of our Lord, Jesus Christ. This is the Man whom the eunuch was reading about. It was from this reading that the eunuch got the good news that changed his life. Has the past Easter period changed our lives? We see so many people suffering in different ways in our churches and communities. Some are suffering because of HIV and AIDS. Has the good news moved us to do something about their suffering? If not, can we really claim that we understand the good news?
To think about (or discuss): What can I and my church/community do to those living with HIV and AIDS as proof of our understanding of the good news?
Author: du Toit N (Rev)