God Proclaims the Gospel Through Everyday Believers
Saul Ravages the Church
8 And bSaul capproved of his execution.
And there arose on that day a great persecution against the church in Jerusalem, and dthey were all scattered throughout the regions of Judea and Samaria, except the apostles. 2 Devout men buried Stephen and made great lamentation over him. 3 But eSaul was ravaging the church, and entering house after house, he fdragged off men and women and committed them to prison.
Philip Proclaims Christ in Samaria
4 Now gthose who were scattered went about preaching the word. 5 hPhilip went down to the city1 of Samaria and proclaimed to them the Christ. 6 iAnd the crowds with one accord paid attention to what was being said by Philip, when they heard him jand saw the signs that he did. 7 For kunclean spirits, crying out with a loud voice, came out of many who had them, and many who were paralyzed or lame were healed. 8 So lthere was much joy in that city.
Simon the Magician Believes
9 But there was a man named Simon, mwho had previously practiced magic in the city and amazed the people of Samaria, nsaying that he himself was somebody great. 10 They all paid attention to him, from the least to the greatest, saying, o“This man is the power of God that is called pGreat.” 11 And they paid attention to him because for a long time he had qamazed them with his magic. 12 But when rthey believed Philip as he preached good news sabout the kingdom of God and the name of Jesus Christ, rthey were baptized, both men and women. 13 Even Simon himself believed, and after being baptized he continued with Philip. And tseeing signs and ugreat miracles2 performed, vhe was amazed.
14 Now when wthe apostles at Jerusalem heard that xSamaria had received the word of God, they sent to them Peter and John, 15 who came down and prayed for them ythat they might receive the Holy Spirit, 16 for zhe had not yet afallen on any of them, but bthey had only been baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. 17 Then cthey laid their hands on them and dthey received the Holy Spirit. 18 Now when Simon saw that the Spirit was given through the laying on of the apostles’ hands, he offered them money, 19 saying, “Give me this power also, so that anyone on whom I lay my hands may receive the Holy Spirit.” 20 But Peter said to him, e“May your silver perish with you, because you thought you could obtain the gift of God fwith money! 21 You have neither part nor lot in this matter, for gyour heart is not right before God. 22 Repent, therefore, of this wickedness of yours, and pray to the Lord that, hif possible, the intent of your heart may be forgiven you. 23 For I see that you are in ithe gall3 of bitterness and in jthe bond of iniquity.” 24 And Simon answered, k“Pray for me to the Lord, that nothing of what you have said may come upon me.”
25 Now when they had testified and spoken the word of the Lord, they returned to Jerusalem, lpreaching the gospel to many villages of the Samaritans.