March 26, 2011
Spiritual Gifts Series
The Spiritual Gift of
Acts 8:26, Page 1715
“But an angel of the Lord spoke to Philip saying, ‘Get up and go south to the road that descends from Jerusalem to Gaza.’ (This is a desert road).”
We have already seen how God uses evangelists to spread the Gospel of Jesus Christ to new places, even unpopular places. Now we begin to see more details about how evangelism works. Remember that the spiritual gift of evangelism focuses primarily upon the proclamation of the Gospel of Jesus Christ so that hearing the Gospel may lead to salvation by faith through grace.
In Acts 8:26, page 1715, we see that Peter and John had finished solemnly testifying and speaking the word. They left to return to Jerusalem. Philip received new directions from the Lord Jesus.
Evangelists Receive Leading from the Lord Jesus To Go Specific Places at Specific Times. An angel of the Lord Jesus spoke to Philip. As you read the New Testament, you will see how God directed various evangelists to go to specific places, like Macedonia (Acts 16:6-10, page 1731).
Evangelists Often Receive Orders To Get Up and Go. Philip heard from the angel that it was time to get up and go. God loves to send evangelists, but they have to be willing to get up and go. I hear stories from evangelists about how God led them to a specific place at a specific time just to meet someone.
Evangelists Sometimes Go to Unusual Destinations. Notice that the Lord directed Philip to a desert road. Philip had been sent to minister to group of people in Samaria and spread the good news there. In sharp contrast, the new directions lead him away from the masses, and to a road leading through a desert. You can already guess that God was sending Philip to meet someone on that road. We will see more about that tomorrow. When evangelists tell you that they feel God is leading them to some unusual place, even a place perhaps not highly populated, you should think: Oh, I remember the desert road and Philip. God does lead evangelists to unusual destinations, sometimes just to meet one person.
So we learn more about the gift of evangelism today from the life of Philip.
● We learn that the spiritual gift of evangelism depends entirely upon God leading evangelists to places and people where God wants to spread the good news of salvation.
● We learn that evangelists receive directions from the Lord Jesus about where to go and when to go there. They get up and go as God directs them to new people and places. They may go down the street or to a new country, depending upon God’s directions.
● We hinder the spiritual gift of evangelism when we no longer follow God’s leading to get up and go, and speak to others about the good news of salvation by faith in Christ Jesus. Sometimes God leads a gifted evangelist to a desert road, instead of a city center.
Application for Today
Today, I want to want to encourage the evangelists and help them on their way. I want to watch them get up and go to the people and places God sends them. I want to hear their stories of spreading the good news of Jesus Christ. Who will you hear today as they tell you how God sent them to share the good news of salvation at a particular place, to a special person, and watched God work today?