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. ~Acts 8:26
Philip occupies a special place in the Scriptures and in the outgrowth of the gospel in the Book of Acts. He is an encouraging reminder that any of us and all of us can and should be faithful in all seasons of our life. He is a testimony of how God blesses faithfulness.
There is the reputation of Philip.
Philip first appears during a time of need in the church. The church needed reputable spiritual leaders who could come alongside of the apostles in the daily administration of needs within the church. Three basic requirements were the criteria: men of honest report, full of the Holy Ghost, and full of wisdom. Basically, men who were proven, men who had power, and men who had prudence. Faithful men are first and foremost faithful in their lives. They are men who are blameless and will be a blessing. How would people describe you? What is your reputation when it comes to your dealings with others?
There is the response of Philip.
The persecution of the church had started. His good friend and colleague, Stephen, had just been martyred for the faith. When problems come, most people react and go into survival mode. Philip, on the other hand, responded by deciding that someone needed to take the gospel to Samaria and plant a church down there. God had already been working in his heart, and the occasion of the persecution was the match that lit the fuse in his heart. He responded to a crisis by bringing Christ to a people who were neglected. He remembered that Jesus said that the witness of the gospel message would go from Judea to Samaria. How do you respond when there is a crisis?
There are the results from Philip.
He had faith in going down to Samaria. He had compassion in going down to Samaria. The Lord blessed his faith, compassion, and preaching in that “the people with one accord gave heed unto those things which Philip spake.” A great number of people believed and were baptized. A church was established in Samaria!
There is the readiness of Philip.
Philip had a good thing going in Samaria. However, he had the gift of an evangelist. The evangelist is a gift to the local church in helping with the proclamation of the gospel to the unsaved. As the church in Samaria was being established and the gospel was being preached by others throughout Samaria, Philip remained tender to the leading of the Lord. His tenderness is a reminder that we should not become blinded to God’s leading when there are blessings upon our present ministry. The Lord spoke to Philip about one solitary man in the middle of the desert who needed to hear the gospel. As soon as the Lord spoke to him about this man’s need, Philip arose and sought out this man to get the gospel to him. The Lord used Philip to help this man get saved. Do you have a readiness to do what the Lord tells you to do even when it might move you to a different location or ministry? Do you obey the impulse of the Spirit when He speaks?
There is the reliability of Philip.
He was faithful in two places, and now the Lord took him to additional locations! Wherever we find Philip, he is faithfully preaching the gospel. He was a man God knew could be trusted anywhere and at any time.
There is the reward for Philip.
In Acts 21, we read that Philip has made his home in Caesarea. There, we read that he has four daughters who were virgins and who were prophetesses. This is not saying that the Bible recognizes women preachers in a public platform. It does speak to us about Philip's godly influence in the home and the fact that his faithfulness was rewarded with four daughters who became witnesses of the gospel and who kept their lives pure before God. It is a joy when we see our children walk in the truth.
What is your faithfulness like? Take some time today to think about Philip, and be faithful just like him!
Have a faithful God Morning!
Bible Reading Schedule: Judges 10-12