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Simple Simon (18 of 24)
Series: The Acts of the Apostles: A Verse-by-Verse Study
January 16, 2008
INTRODUCTION: In this lesson we find Philip in Samaria. It says in (vs. 5), "Then Philip went down to the city of Samaria, and preached Christ unto them." Philip, you will remember, was one of the seven chosen deacons, who also became an evangelist.
As Philip begins to present the gospel, people were saved; many of them were delivered from evil spirits. It says in (vs. 7), "For unclean spirits, crying with loud voice, came out of many that were possessed with them: and many taken with palsies, and that were lame, were healed." Enter one Simon...I call him "Simple Simon" because as we will see later, Simon behaves like a simpleton. Let me give you three main points this evening:
I. Who Was Simon?
II. What is His Story?
III. How Did He Change?
I. WHO WAS SIMON?
A. His Background
1. Not a whole lot is known about Simon, other than where he lived and what he did. As we've read, Simon was from the city of Samaria. Samaria was about 35-40 miles from Jerusalem, located between Judea and Galilee. At one time, Samaria was the capital city of the Northern 10 tribes of Israel. In 722 BC, however, it was conquered by the Assyrians.
2. The Bible tells us that Simon was a sorcerer, who had bewitched the people of the city (vs. 9). The word "sorcery" means magic. In other words, Simon was a charlatan, controlled by Satan--much like the modern-day healers of our day, who can't heal themselves of a cold. Simon made a lucrative living at the expense of gullible people.
B. His Power
1. It says of Simon in (vs. 10), "...they all gave heed, from the least to the greatest, saying, "This man is the great power of God." Obviously, this man's power was not from God; what limited power he had came from Satan. Simon was a "sensationalist." He was the "Houdini" of the day.
a. One of the defining characte ...
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