An Issue of the Heart

March 10, 2024   /   Westside Church

3-10-2024

Reminder:

An Issue of the Heart

Acts 8:1–25 (ESV)

1And Saul approved of his execution. And there arose on that day a great persecution against the church in Jerusalem, and they were all scattered throughout the regions of Judea and Samaria, except the apostles. 2Devout men buried Stephen and made great lamentation over him. 3But Saul was ravaging the church, and entering house after house, he dragged off men and women and committed them to prison. 4Now those who were scattered went about preaching the word. 5Philip went down to the city of Samaria and proclaimed to them the Christ.

  • A great

Zechariah 13:7–9 (ESV)

7“Awake, O sword, against my shepherd, against the man who stands next to me,” declares the Lord of hosts. “Strike the shepherd, and the sheep will be scattered; I will turn my hand against the little ones. 8In the whole land, declares the Lord, two thirds shall be cut off and perish, and one third shall be left alive. 9And I will put this third into the fire, and refine them as one refines silver, and test them as gold is tested. They will call upon my name, and I will answer them. I will say, ‘They are my people’; and they will say, ‘The Lord is my God.’ ”

  • Devout men buried Stephen and made great

Mishnah Sanhedrin 6:6

Once the flesh of the deceased had decomposed, they would gather his bones and bury them in their proper place in his ancestral burial plot. And soon after the execution, the relatives of the executed transgressor would come and inquire about the welfare of the judges and about the welfare of the witnesses, as if to say: We hold no grudges against you, as you judged a true judgment. And the relatives of the executed man would not mourn him with the observance of the usual mourning rites, so that his unmourned death would atone for his transgression; but they would grieve over his passing, since grief is felt only in the heart.

  • The city of Samaria
    • Samaria/Sebastos or Shechem/Neapolis?

6And the crowds with one accord paid attention to what was being said by Philip, when they heard him and saw the signs that he did. 7For unclean spirits, crying out with a loud voice, came out of many who had them, and many who were paralyzed or lame were healed. 8So there was much joy in that city. 9But there was a man named Simon, who had previously practiced magic in the city and amazed the people of Samaria, saying that he himself was somebody great. 10They all paid attention to him, from the least to the greatest, saying, “This man is the power of God that is called Great.” 11And they paid attention to him because for a long time he had amazed them with his magic.

  • Simon Magus, Simon the Sorcerer
    • Gnosticism
    • Simon and Helen
    • Simon in Rome deified

12But when they believed Philip as he preached good news about the kingdom of God and the name of Jesus Christ, they were baptized, both men and women. 13Even Simon himself believed, and after being baptized he continued with Philip. And seeing signs and great miracles performed, he was amazed. 14Now when the apostles at Jerusalem heard that Samaria had received the word of God, they sent to them Peter and John, 15who came down and prayed for them that they might receive the Holy Spirit, 16for he had not yet fallen on any of them, but they had only been baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. 17Then they laid their hands on them and they received the Holy Spirit.

  • They Philip… Even Simon himself believed…

James 2:18–19 (ESV)

18But someone will say, “You have faith and I have works.” Show me your faith apart from your works, and I will show you my faith by my works. 19You believe that God is one; you do well. Even the demons believe—and shudder!

  • They had only been baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus
    • Baptism
  • Why this way?

Acts 2:1–4 (ESV)

1When the day of Pentecost arrived, they were all together in one place. 2And suddenly there came from heaven a sound like a mighty rushing wind, and it filled the entire house where they were sitting. 3And divided tongues as of fire appeared to them and rested on each one of them. 4And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit gave them utterance.

Acts 2:38 (ESV)

38And Peter said to them, “Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.

Acts 9:17–19 (ESV)

17So Ananias departed and entered the house. And laying his hands on him he said, “Brother Saul, the Lord Jesus who appeared to you on the road by which you came has sent me so that you may regain your sight and be filled with the Holy Spirit.” 18And immediately something like scales fell from his eyes, and he regained his sight. Then he rose and was baptized; 19and taking food, he was strengthened. For some days he was with the disciples at Damascus.

Acts 10:44–48 (ESV)

44While Peter was still saying these things, the Holy Spirit fell on all who heard the word. 45And the believers from among the circumcised who had come with Peter were amazed, because the gift of the Holy Spirit was poured out even on the Gentiles. 46For they were hearing them speaking in tongues and extolling God. Then Peter declared, 47“Can anyone withhold water for baptizing these people, who have received the Holy Spirit just as we have?” 48And he commanded them to be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ. Then they asked him to remain for some days.

  • Why does this matter?

Ephesians 1:11–14 (ESV)

11In him we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to the purpose of him who works all things according to the counsel of his will, 12so that we who were the first to hope in Christ might be to the praise of his glory. 13In him you also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, 14who is the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it, to the praise of his glory.

18Now when Simon saw that the Spirit was given through the laying on of the apostles’ hands, he offered them money, 19saying, “Give me this power also, so that anyone on whom I lay my hands may receive the Holy Spirit.” 20But Peter said to him, “May your silver perish with you, because you thought you could obtain the gift of God with money! 21You have neither part nor lot in this matter, for your heart is not right before God. 22Repent, therefore, of this wickedness of yours, and pray to the Lord that, if possible, the intent of your heart may be forgiven you. 23For I see that you are in the gall of bitterness and in the bond of iniquity.” 24And Simon answered, “Pray for me to the Lord, that nothing of what you have said may come upon me.” 25Now when they had testified and spoken the word of the Lord, they returned to Jerusalem, preaching the gospel to many villages of the Samaritans.

  • Simony

Simony (/ˈsɪməni/) is the act of selling church offices and roles or sacred things.

  • beyond

John 3:16–21 (ESV)

16“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. 17For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. 18Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God. 19And this is the judgment: the light has come into the world, and people loved the darkness rather than the light because their works were evil. 20For everyone who does wicked things hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his works should be exposed. 21But whoever does what is true comes to the light, so that it may be clearly seen that his works have been carried out in God.”

  • An Issue of the

God in a

Hebrews 4:12–13 (ESV)

12For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart. 13And no creature is hidden from his sight, but all are naked and exposed to the eyes of him to whom we must give account.

 

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