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Sermon #2108

The Ethiopian Eunuch

A Sermon on Acts 8:26-31

Scripture

Acts 8:26-31 ESV NASB KJV
Now an angel of the Lord said to Philip, “Rise and go toward the south to the road that goes down from Jerusalem to Gaza.” This is a desert place. And he rose and went. And there was an Ethiopian, a eunuch, a court official of Candace, queen of the …

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Sermon Description

What is so significant about the baptism of the Ethiopian eunuch in Acts 8:26–31? This is an interesting story of how God, in His providence, arranges for Philip to meet this man and share the message of Jesus with him. It also shows that even the religious must repent and believe in the gospel as the only means of salvation. This Ethiopian man went to the temple in Jerusalem to worship, yet he had not received the Holy Spirit. He knew of the sacrifices in the temple, but not of the sacrifice of Christ. Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones says that only a religion that is based on and focused on Christ can have any saving power. Only true religion gives any satisfaction in this life. Many people fill their lives with worldly wisdom and vain religion, but the gospel tells that all is for nothing if one does not have Christ. This sermon asks one the question: “what religion do I have? Am I following a dead religion that has no power to save and transform me?” All must turn to Christ Jesus as the only true center of true religion and worship.

Sermon Breakdown

  1. The sermon is based on Acts 8:26-31 which describes Philip's encounter with the Ethiopian eunuch.
  2. The eunuch was a man of great authority who was in charge of the treasury of the Ethiopian queen. He was a learned and moral man.
  3. Although the eunuch held a position of power and privilege, he was dissatisfied and searching for meaning. He had become a Jewish proselyte, rejecting his pagan upbringing.
  4. The eunuch's dissatisfaction was intellectual, moral and religious. He sought truth, guidance for living, and a God worthy of worship.
  5. The eunuch traveled to Jerusalem to worship and study scripture, showing his deep religious devotion and desire to learn.
  6. On his journey home, the eunuch was reading Isaiah, still searching for answers. His question to Philip, "How can I understand unless someone guides me?" shows his longing and despair.
  7. Although the eunuch had found more truth in Judaism than in paganism, he still did not have peace. His works-based righteousness and zeal without knowledge could not satisfy God or himself.
  8. The tragedy was that the eunuch had been in Jerusalem but missed the gospel, the only thing that could meet his needs. His position mirrored that of religious Jews who rejected Christ.
  9. God's righteousness comes through faith in Christ alone, not through man's efforts. The eunuch needed to believe in Jesus to be saved and find the answers he sought.
  10. We must examine ourselves to see if we share the eunuch's dissatisfaction and longing for truth. Have we realized our need for God's righteousness and accepted the gospel? Or are we relying on our own righteousness through religious zeal without knowledge?

The Book of Acts

Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones

Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones (1899-1981) was a Welsh evangelical minister who preached and taught in the Reformed tradition. His principal ministry was at Westminster Chapel, in central London, from 1939-1968, where he delivered multi-year expositions on books of the bible such as Romans, Ephesians and the Gospel of John. In addition to the MLJ Trust’s collection of 1,600 of these sermons in audio format, most of these great sermon series are available in book form (including a 14 volume collection of the Romans sermons), as are other series such as "Spiritual Depression", "Studies in the Sermon on the Mount" and "Great Biblical Doctrines". He is considered by many evangelical leaders today to be an authority on biblical truth and the sufficiency of Scripture.