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People of the Bible: Philip

Who was Philip?

The Philip in Acts 8 is not Philip the apostle. Because they have the same name, they often get confused. However, this passage is telling the story of Philip the evangelist. Here we see Philip being led by the Spirit to go and help an influential Ethiopian man understand the Old Testament.

The Ethiopian was traveling back from worshipping in Jerusalem when God told Philip to go walk by this man’s cart. As he was walking, Philip could hear the man reading from the book of Isaiah. Philip asked the man if he knew what he was reading and the man said that he didn’t. He then invited Philip to interpret the passage for him.

Philip explained the passage in the light of Jesus. He showed that man that everything in the Old Testament pointed to a Savior and that Savior was Jesus. The Ethiopian was convinced and he put his faith in Jesus. Philip had talked to him about baptism, and after the Ethiopian put his faith in Jesus he wanted to be baptized as well.

While they were riding along the road, the Ethiopian saw a body of water and asked if he could be baptized. So, Philip baptized the man and he went on his way rejoicing because of his salvation.

In this passage, we learn how vitally important it is to follow the Holy Spirit’s lead. The Holy Spirit knows everyone’s needs before we ever could. The Holy Spirit knew the Ethiopian man was curious and needed the Scriptures interpreted. Philip listened to the Spirit and it resulted in a man being saved. The same Holy Spirit is speaking to us today. The Spirit wants to do these same types of things through us, and he will if we follow his direction.

Another thing we learn is that Jesus is the figure being pointed to in all of Scripture. The Ethiopian was having a hard time finding out what the passage in Isaiah was talking about but Philip told him about Jesus. By knowing that Jesus is the Messiah, we can read all of Scripture and see him appear time and time again.

Finally, we learn that salvation brings rejoicing. The man was filled with joy that he had been shown the way to Jesus. When we accept Jesus as God’s son who died on the cross for our sins we can experience this same joy. We also have the opportunity to share the good news about Jesus with others so they can rejoice too.

Key Takeaways:

  • The Holy Spirit Leads Us

  • Jesus is the Good News

  • Salvation Brings Rejoicing

Parents, 3treesKIDS will also be learning about Philip this Sunday, both in-person and online.

Be sure to check out their lesson at

To find service times and locations, visit


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