Many Christians are sitting on the sidelines waiting for some sort of directive in their lives. They desire to be used of God, but they want to see the total picture before they commit to any action. It is almost like a “pre-authorization” by the Believer. They want to know where their commitment will take them. To respond to His leading without knowing the “big picture” takes an enormous step of faith. God told Abram to leave his country and go to a land “that I will show you.” (Genesis 12:1) Abram asked no questions and packed up and left for the unknown destination. Philip, who had brought the Gospel message to Samaria, was directed to leave Samaria and to travel along the road from Jerusalem to Gaza. Philip asked no questions and set off, not knowing what he was looking for or the purpose of his journey. (Acts 8:26) Faith initiates the first step. I wonder how many Believers fail to distinguish the Holy Spirit’s promptings. Instead of waiting for fireworks or supernatural signs to grab your attention, what about hearing that small “voice” that is prompting you to take that first step toward fulfilling God’s objective?
Some of the greatest joys Christians can experience are achieved by walking in Faith, knowing that whatever lies ahead, God is involved. I wonder how many opportunities have been missed by failing to take the first step. If Philip had refused to go to the desert regions between Jerusalem and Gaza, Queen Candace’s Treasury Secretary would never have come to the knowledge of Jesus Christ. The Believer never knows where the journey of Faith will lead. The only thing he knows for sure is that each step will bring him closer to fulfilling his role in God’s plan. We may not see the full picture, but the journey will be worth the effort when we see the result of our obedience.
When Philip finally made it to the Jerusalem/ Gaza highway and began his journey south, he must have looked for something that would identify what the Holy Spirit wanted him to do. Step by step, he walked with explosive energy, knowing that he was following the leading of the Spirit. Suddenly, along the side of the road, he saw a chariot with a man sitting and reading a scroll. The Holy Spirit told Philip to approach the chariot. He ran over and heard this man reading from the prophet Isaiah. Philip asked him if he understood what he was reading. The man said he didn’t and invited Philip to join him. Sitting with a high ranking official of Ethiopia, Philip responded to his questions and began to preach Jesus to him. As the chariot rolled south, they came upon some water and the “eunuch” asked if he could be baptized. Philip told him that if he truly believed, he could. He said he did and was then baptized! I can only image what happened in Ethiopia when the official arrived back home. This eunuch helped fulfill Jesus’ command to take the Gospel to the “uttermost part of the earth.” (Acts 1:8)
It all started with a single step of Faith and ended with a picture of a man saved by Grace. Every Believer is called to spread the Gospel. I believe it is an action word, for you cannot spell Gospel without the word GO and what follows is our duty to SPEL(L) out the Truth with the Word of God. Can we use the Old Testament to lead someone to Christ? What do you think? What happened to Philip? He took another step and was found in Azotes, where he probably preached the Gospel. Taking another step, he preached the Gospel in every city on the way to Caesarea. It all started with one step. Are you willing to respond to the Holy Spirit’s leading? (Acts 8:26-40)