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Discovery Magazine 12/1/2008

The Ethiopian Eunuch

by  AP Staff

After Philip assisted in the conversion of a large number of people in Samaria, an angel from God came to talk to him. The angel told Philip: “Arise and go toward the south along the road which goes down from Jerusalem to Gaza” (Acts 8:26).

Philip departed after the angel spoke to him, and soon saw a chariot. Sitting in the chariot was a man from Ethiopia (a country in Africa). The man was a eunuch who had much power in his country, which was ruled by Queen Candace. The eunuch was in charge of taking care of all of the queen’s money—he was her treasurer. He was going back to his home in Ethiopia after worshiping in Jerusalem. The Holy Spirit told Philip to go and join the treasurer in his chariot. Philip was so excited to preach the Gospel that he ran to catch up with the chariot.

Once Philip got to the chariot, he heard that the eunuch was reading from the book of Isaiah. Philip asked the man, “Do you understand what you are reading?’’ The eunuch answered, “How can I, unless someone guides me?” The eunuch asked Philip to come into the chariot and sit with him. Philip saw that the eunuch was reading from Isaiah 53:7-8, which says: “He was led as a sheep to the slaughter; and as a lamb before its shearer is silent, so He opened not his mouth. In His humiliation His justice was taken away, and who will declare His generation? For His life is taken from the earth.”

The eunuch asked Philip who Isaiah was writing about. Philip then began to tell him all about Jesus, and what a person needs to do to be in a right relationship with Him. After Philip and the eunuch had traveled down the road for a while, the eunuch said, “See, here is water. What hinders me from being baptized?” (Acts 8:36). Philip then ordered the chariot to stop, and he baptized the Ethiopian official. The eunuch went back home very happy, because he had just made the greatest decision of his life: he decided to become a Christian.

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