Seeking to Purchase the Gift from God
Simon was a man in Samaria who practiced magic to astonish the people, through which he claimed to be someone great, Acts 8:9. Therefore, the people, great and small, all paid attention to him, saying that what he was doing was the great inherent ability of God, Acts 8:10. Sorcerer (μαγεύω) is one who practices magic (μαγεία). This is the same type of magic that street performers use today to amaze people and gain financially from them as they seek to be well-known for their skills. Simon was not the only one doing magic to obtain notoriety recorded in Scripture. Elymas, a false prophet who was known as a Sorcerer, stood against Saul and Barnabas, preventing them from speaking the Word of God to the proconsul of Paphos, seeking to turn Sergius Paulus from the faith, Acts 13:6-8. These men used magic to persuade the people that their power was from God and procure a position of high regard for themselves, giving them access to substantial wealth.
When Philip the evangelist came to Samaria proclaiming the gospel of the resurrected Christ, Simon the sorcerer was among those who believed. The signs and wonders that Philip was doing intrigued him, so he continued with Philip after being immersed, Acts 8:13. Although the Samaritans believed in the facts of the Gospel, they had not yet received the Holy Spirit because God was using this as an opportunity to show the Jews that He is accepting the Gentiles into the Church. Therefore, it was not until the Apostles sent Peter and John, who laid their hands on those who believed Philip’s message, that they received the Holy Spirit, Acts 8:16. The […]