In Acts 8 we find the awe-inspiring story of Philip who witnessed to the Ethiopian heading home from Jerusalem.  It is a story filled with mystery and wonder, but at its heart it is very simple, and it is a story that has been replicated countless times over the past 2,000 years.

A follower of Jesus hears the whisper of the Spirit (in Philip’s case it was the voice of an angel, but both are from the same source) to go and share the Good News of Jesus to someone who needs to hear the Gospel.

What must it have taken to get Philip to go?  I’m sure the voice of the angel helped, but at the end of the day, it is the same thing that will get us moving – obedience. 

It was obedience that got Ananias to go to a man named Saul who’d had an encounter with Jesus on the road to Damascus, despite everything Ananias had heard and experienced about Saul caused him to believe it would put him in grave danger.

It was obedience that caused Esther to walk into the court of the king, despite the reality that it could cost her life.  It was obedience that caused Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-Nego to defy the decree of the king when it came in conflict with the commands of God.  It was obedience that brought Moses to stand before Pharaoh, though his obedience wasn’t immediate and didn’t come without Godly rebuke.

Our instructions are clear:

And who is he who will harm you if you become followers of what is good? But even if you should suffer for righteousness’ sake, you are blessed. “And do not be afraid of their threats, nor be troubled.” But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts, and always be ready to give a defence to everyone who asks you a reason for the hope that is in you, with meekness and fear; having a good conscience, that when they defame you as evildoers, those who revile your good conduct in Christ may be ashamed. (1 Peter 3:13 – 16)

When Philip sat alongside the Ethiopian, he had the privilege of leading him to Christ and baptising him.  In our case, the outcome is not our concern, that is up to the individual and The Lord, our part is obedience.

There is maybe one more story we could consider – the story of Jonah.  He took a lot more convincing but eventually God got him to deliver God’s message of salvation as was God’s good pleasure.  It could have been worse for Jonah if even a few nights in the belly of a fish didn’t get his attention. Let us not allow it to come to that for us.

And if ever you want advice, training or council on how to share the Good News, or someone to pray as you take a step of faith to speak to someone following the conviction of the Holy Spirit – then please let me know, there are people willing, even eager to help equip and encourage our church family experience the blessing of fulfilling the Great Commission (Matthew 28:18 – 20).