Acts 8 — vengeance, bitterness & forgiveness; Israel & Messiah Inc.

The rebuke of Simon the Magician highlights how bitterness and resentment lead to wickedness. Yet how is vengeance a part of forgiveness and personal peace? As Acts 8 ends, the Ethiopian official asks what is now a 2,000-year-old question, Can prophecies about Israel apply to Messiah?

Food for thought from the recorded discussion

PDF Download Acts 8 study notes in PDF format. (277KB)

Acts 8:14-24

What is the connection between bitterness and wickedness? Do the Psalms of David (when David asks God to “smite” his enemies,” called an imprecation) contradict God’s command in the Torah that “vengence is Mine” (Deut. 32:35; Rom. 12:19; Heb. 10:30)? How does taking God at His word help us resolve any bitterness we may have in our hearts against another person? 

Why would Simon the Magician have been bitter in the first place? Why did Peter rebute Simon so vigorously?

Acts 8:26-40

What was the Ethiopian official reading? What is significant about the fact that he had his own copy of the scripture? What text was perplexing the Ethiopian official?

Who or what is the subject of these four passages referring to God’s servant:

  1. Isa. 42:1-9
  2. Isa. 49:1-13
  3. Isa. 50:4-11
  4. Isa. 52:13-15; Isaiah 53

Why did Philip preach Yeshua to him after he had read these texts? Did the Ethiopian understand the subject of the prophesy just by reading the text? Why did he need Philip’s help to understand these texts? How are Israel and the Messiah intertwined?

Speaker: Jeff.

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