Summary: Philip and the Ethiopian - (PowerPoint slides to accompany this talk are available on request – email:

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The Characters

• An evangelist called Philip (vs 26)

• A eunuch from Ethiopia (vs 27)

The Situation.

• The servant of the Lord (vs 27)

• A seeker of the Lord (vs 27-28)

The Conversation.

• The helpful evangelist (vs 30 and 36)

• The questioning enquirer (vs 31-34)

The Conclusion

• The convert was baptised (vs 36-39a)

• The Christian was redirected (vs 39b-40)


Philip and the Ethiopian

Reading: chapter 8 verses 26-40.


• On December 17, 1903,

• The Wright brothers piloted the first powered airplane.

• Orville Wright piloted the first powered airplane.

• He flew 20 feet above a wind-swept beach in North Carolina.

• The flight lasted 12 seconds and covered 120 feet.

• Three more flights were made that day with Orville's brother Wilbur;

• Piloting the record flight lasting 59 seconds over a distance of 852 feet.

• Thrilled, the Wright brothers telegraphed this message to their sister Katherine:

• The message read:

• "We have actually flown 120 feet. Will be home for Christmas."

• Katherine hurried to the editor of the local newspaper and showed him the message.

• He glanced at it and said,

• "How nice. The boys will be home for Christmas."

• Transition:

• The editor of that newspaper had totally missed the big news;

• Probably the story of the decade, maybe even the century;

• For the very first time man had flown!

• Trivia:

• As an aside - the flight of the wright brothers was 120ft (36.5 m);

• Which is actually shorter than the wingspan on a Boeing 747jumbo jet

• That newspaper editor had missed the opportunity of a lifetime;

• He had missed the story of a century,

• In life God gives us opportunities – some of them only come along once;

• Let’s make sure we do not miss them!

(A). The Two Characters

(1). An evangelist called Philip (vs 26)

“Now an angel of the Lord said to Philip, Go south to the road--the desert road--that goes down from Jerusalem to Gaza”.

Philip was first introduced to us in Acts chapter 6;

• He was one of the seven deacons who served in the Church at Jerusalem,

• That description ‘deacon’;

• Means his spiritual gift to the Church was at first practical rather than spiritual.

• i.e. You would have probably asked him to fix a broken table,

• Than to preach a sermon.

• But by the time you read chapter 8:

• We discover Philip also had other spiritual gifts;

• i.e. He could preach (vs 5);

• i.e. And in this story he was also a very good personal worker (vs 35).


• As a Christian whether you consider your gifts practical or spiritual:

• Every Christian is called to be a personal worker;

• To share Christ with those we come into contact with.


• At the entrance of one of the great manufacturing plants in America;

• Is a sign that reads;

• “If you are like a wheelbarrow - going no farther than you are pushed;

• You need not apply for work here!”

• When it comes to evangelism, too many Christians have wheelbarrow mentality;

• Sadly. Too many see it as an optional extra and not as an essential!


• Two shoe salesman were sent to Africa.

• One sent a telegram home that said: “Get me home, nobody here wears shoes.”

• The other salesman’s telegram said:

• “Send me all of the shoes you can, nobody here wears shoes.”

• We live in a world of needy people;

• May God give us the vision and the desire to reach them!

Quote: Edward Everett Hale, the poet & former Chaplain of the U.S. Senate:

“I am only one, but I am one.

I cannot do everything, but I can do something.

What I can do, that I ought to do.

And what I ought to do, by the grace of God, I shall do.”

(2). A eunuch from Ethiopia (vs 27)

“So he started out, and on his way he met an Ethiopian eunuch, an important official in charge of all the treasury of Candace, queen of the Ethiopians”.

Notice: that we are told two things about this man:

FIRST: He was a significant political leader,

• He is called ‘an important official’,

• And described as the chancellor of the exchequer of Candace.

• Candace is a title not a place name,

• All the queens of Ethiopia bore it.

SECOND: He was a eunuch:

• A eunuch is a castrated man,

• In ancient times they were used to guard the women's living areas at an oriental court.

• After all if a man has no genitalia;

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