Rev. William Ilnisky
Monday, 17 September 2018 17:36
When the Christians were scattered abroad, Philip, who had emerged into prominence as one of the Seven, arrived in Samaria, and there he preached. This incident of the work in Samaria is an astonishing thing because it was proverbial that the Jews had no dealings with the Samaritans (John 4:9).
The quarrel between the Jews and the Samaritans was century old. Back in the 8th Century B.C. the Assyrians conquered the Northern Kingdom whose capital was Samaria.
As conquerors did in those day, they transported the greater part of the population and settled strangers in the land. In the sixth century, the Babylonians conquered the Southern Kingdom with its capital Jerusalem and its inhabitants were carried away to Babylon, but they completely refused to lose their identity and remained Jews. In the 5th century B.C., they were allowed to return and to rebuild their capitol under Ezra and Nehemiah. When the people of the Southern Kingdom returned and started to build their city, the people around Samaria offered their help. It was refused because they were no longer pure Jews. From that day on there was bitter hatred between Jews and Samaritans.
The fact that Philip preached there and that the message of Jesus was given to these people shows the Church unconsciously taking one of the most important steps in history and discovering that Jesus is for all the world.
This is what Christianity brought to these people:
(1st) It brought the story of Jesus, the message of the love of God in Jesus Christ.
(2nd) It brought healing. Christianity has never been a thing of words only.
(3rd) It brought, as a natural consequence, a joy that the Samaritans had never known.
If you were there, would you have taken Philip's place? Do you feel God wants to use you with signs and miracles?
Praise/Prayer: Dear Father, I am so thankful that the Bible has Philip and others just like him who believed that You are the God of miracles. Our world today needs the "signs and wonders" that fill the Bible. Father, please raise up men and women who will desire to be used for supernatural signs and wonders. Thank You! Amen!