Front Matter The Story of a Beautiful Garden The First Baby in the World and His Brother The Great Ship That Saved Eight People The Tower That Was Never Finished The Story of a Long Journey How Abram's Choice Brought Blessing The Angel by the Well The Rain of Fire That Fell on a City The Boy Who Became an Archer How an Angel's Voice Saved a Boy's Life The Story of a Journey after a Wife How Jacob Stole His Brother's Blessing Jacob's Wonderful Dream A Midnight Wrestling Match The Rich Man's Son Who Was Sold as a Slave From the Prison to the Palace How Joseph's Dream Came True A Lost Brother Found From the Land of Famine to the Land of Plenty The Beautiful Baby Who Was Found in a River The Voice from the Burning Bush The River That Ran Blood The Night When a Nation Was Born How the Sea Became Dry Land and the Sky Rained Bre The Mountain That Smoked and Words That Were Spoke How Aaron Made a Golden Calf and What Became of It The Tent Where God Lived Among His People How They Worshipped God in the Tabernacle What Strong Drink Brought to Aaron's Sons The Scapegoat in the Wilderness The Cluster of Grapes from the Land of Canaan How the Long Journey of the Israelites Came to an What a Wise Man Learned from an Ass How Moses Looked upon the Promised Land The Story of Job The Story of a Scarlet Cord How the River Jordan Became Dry The Story of a Wedge of Gold How Joshua Conquered the Land of Canaan The Old Man Who Fought Against the Giants The Avenger of Blook and the Cities of Refuge The Story of an Altar Beside the River The Presnt That Ehud Brought to King Eglon How a Woman Won a Great Victory Gideon and His Brave Three Hundred Jephthah's Rash Promise and What Came from It The Strong Man: How He Lived and How He Died The Idol Temple at Dan and Its Priest How Ruth Gleaned in the Field of Boaz The Little Boy with a Linen Coat How the Idol Fell Down Before the Ark The Last of the Judges The Tall Man Who Was Chosen King How Saul Saved the Eyes of the Men of Jabesh The Brave Young Prince Saul's Great Sin and His Great Loss The Shepherd Boy of Bethlehem The Shepherd Boy's Fight with the Giant The Little Boy Looking for the Arrows Where David Found the Giant's Sword How David Spared Saul's Life The Last Days of King Saul The Shepherd Boy Becomes a King The Sound in the Treetops The Cripple at the King's Table The Prophet's Story of the Little Lamb David's Handsome Son and How He Stole the Kingdom Absalom in the Wood; David on the Throne The Angel with the Drawn Sword on Mount Moriah Solomon on This Father's Throne The Wise Young King The House of God on Mount Moriah The Last Days of Solomon's Reign The Breaking Up of a Great Kingdom The King Who Led Israel to Sin The Prophet Who Raised a Boy to Life The Prayer That Was Answered in Fire The Voice That Spoke to Elijah in the Mount The Wounded Prophet and His Story What Ahab Paid for His Vineyard The Arrow That Killed a King Elijah's Chariot of Fire A Spring Sweetened by Salt The Pot of Oil and the Pot of Poison The Little Boy at Shunem How a Little Girl Helped to Cure a Leper The Chariots of Fire around Elisha What the Lepers Found in the Camp Jehu, the Furious Driver of His Chariot Elisha and the Bow; Jonah and Nineveh How the Ten Tribes Were Lost The First Four Kings of Judah The Little Boy Who Was Crowned King Three Kings and a Great Prophet The Good King Hezekiah The Lost Book Found in the Temple The Last Four Kings of Judah and the Weeping Proph What Ezekiel Saw in the Valley The Jewish Captives in the Court of the King The Golden Image and the Fiery Furnace The Tree That Was Cut Down and Grew Again The Writing upon the Wall Daniel in the Den of Lions The Story of a Joyous Journey The New Temple on Mount Moriah The Beautiful Queen of Persia The Scribe Who Wrote the Old Testament The Nobleman Who Built the Wall of Jerusalem Ezra's Great Bible Class in Jerusalem The Angel by the Altar The Manger of Bethlehem The Star and the Wise Men The Boy in his Father's House The Prophet in the Wilderness Jesus in the Desert, and beside the River The Water Jars at the Wedding Feast The Stranger at the Well The Story of a Boy in Capernaum and a Riot A Net Full of Fishes The Leper and the Man Let Down through the Roof The Cripple at the Pool and the Withered Hand The Twelve Disciples and the Sermon on the Mount The Captain's Servant, the Widow's Son, and a Sinn Some Stories Jesus Told by the Sea "Peace, Be Still" The Little Girl Who Was Raised to Life A Dancing Girl and What Was Given Her The Feast beside the Sea and What Followed It The Answer to a Mother's Prayer The Glory of Jesus on the Mountain The Little Child in the Arms of Jesus At the Feast of Tabernacles The Man with Clay on His Face The Good Shepherd and the Good Samaritan Lazarus Raised to Life Some Parables in Perea The Poor Rich Man and the Rich Poor Man Jesus at Jericho Palm Sunday The Last Vistis of Jesus to the Temple The Parables on the Mount of Olives The Last Supper The Olive Orchard and the High Priests Hall The Crown of Thorns The Darkest Day of All the World The Brightest Day of All the World The Stranger on the Shore The Church of the First Days The Man at the Beautiful Gate The Right Way to Give, and the Wrong Way Stephen with the Shining Face The Man Reading in the Chariot The Voice That Spoke to Saul What Peter Saw by the Sea How the Iron Gate Was Opened The Earliest Missionaries The Song in the Prison Paul's Speech on the Hill Paul at Corinth Paul at Ephesus Paul's Last Journey to Jerusalem The Speech on the Stairs Two Years in Prison The Story That Paul Told to the King Paul in the Storm How Paul Came to Rome and How He Lived There The Throne of God The City of God

Story of the Bible Told for Young and Old - Jesse Hurlbut

The Man Reading in the Chariot

We have seen how the first church of those who believed in Christ was broken up, and its members were driven away by the fury and rage of its enemy, the young man Saul. But as those who were scattered went into other places, they told the people about Christ and his gospel. And very soon new companies of believers in Christ began to rise up, all over the land. In place of one church n Jerusalem there were many churches among its cities and villages of Judea. Thus Saul, for all his hate toward Christ, really helped in spreading the gospel of Christ.

Among those driven away by Saul was a man named Philip, not Philip the apostle, but another Philip, who had been one of those chosen with Stephen to care for the poor. This Philip went down to the city of Samaria, near the middle of the land; and there he began to tell the people about Christ. These people were not Jews, but were of the race called Samaritans. The woman of Samaria, with whom Jesus talked at Jacob’s well, as we read in Story Eight of Part Sixth, was of this people.

The Lord gave to Philip the power to work many wonders among these Samaritans. At Philip’s word, evil spirits came out of men. Those who had the palsey were cured, and the lame were made to walk. The Samaritans saw these things done by Philip, and they believed that he spoke to them the words of God. Very many of them became believers in Christ, and were baptized; and there was great joy in that city.

At that time there was in Samaria a certain man named Simon, who had made the people believe that he had great power and could do wonderful things, by some magic that he used. But the works wrought by Philip through the power of Christ were so much greater and more wonderful than his own, that Simon himself listened to the teaching of Philip, claimed to believe in Jesus, and was baptized. But his heart had not been touched; he thought only that Philip’s magic was better than his own, and he hoped to find out what it was, so that he too could use it.

The twelve apostles, you remember, were still in Jerusalem; for they did not leave the city when Saul broke up the church. After a time Saul ceased to trouble, and some of the believers began to go back to Jerusalem. A new church grew up in that city around the apostles, though it never became as large or as whole-hearted as had been the church of the early days.

News came to the apostles of the great work wrought by Philip in Samaria, and they sent Peter and John to visit the new church in that place. Peter and John came to Samaria, and were glad when they saw how many and how faithful were the believers in Christ. They prayed for them, that the same power of the Holy Spirit that had come upon the disciples in Jerusalem might come upon those in Samaria; and the power of the Lord came when the apostles laid their hands on the heads of the believers.

When Simon saw that this strange power of God came with the laying on of the apostle’s hands, he offered Peter and John money, saying to them, "Sell me this power, so that I may give the Holy Spirit to those on whom I lay my hands."

But Peter said to him, "May your silver perish with you if you think to buy the gift of God with money! You do not really belong to Christ, and your heart is not right with God. Turn away from this your sin, and pray God that he will forgive you. For I see that you are yet in your sins, sins that are as bitter as gall; and you are fast bound in evil as with a Chain!"

Simon could not understand this, but he said, "Pray for me to the Lord, that none of these evils that you have named come upon me!"

After this Peter and John preached among many villages of the Samaritans, and then they went back to Jerusalem. Philip’s work in Samaria was now done, and an angel of the Lord spoke to him, saying:

"Rise up, and leave this city; and go toward the south, on the road that goes down from Jerusalem to Gaza."

This was a road through a desert region, without villages or people; but Philip at once obeyed the word that came from the Lord. He left Samaria and walked southward, until he came to the road between Jerusalem and Gaza. While he was on this desert road he saw a chariot drawing near, and in it was seated o black man reading from a roll. This man had come from the land of Ethiopia, in Africa, far to the south of Egypt. He was a nobleman of very high rank, the treasurer of the queen in that land; and though he was not a Jew, he had taken a journey of more than a thousand miles to Jerusalem, riding in his chariot all the way, that he might worship God in his Temple. He was now going back to his own land, and in his hands was the roll of the prophet Isaiah, from which he was reading aloud while he was riding on his journey.

As the chariot of this black man came in sight, the Spirit of the Lord said to Philip, "Go near, and stand close by the chariot."

And Philip ran toward the chariot, and spoke to the man, and said "Do you understand what you are reading?"

The nobleman answered him, "How can I understand it, unless some one tells me what it means? Can you show me? If you can, come up into the chariot and sit with me."

Then Philip came up and sat down in the chariot. The place where he was reading was the fifty-third chapter of Isaiah, with words like these:

"He was led as a sheep to the slaughter,

And as a lamb before his shearer is dumb,

So he openeth not his mouth.

His story who shall tell?

For his life is taken from the earth."

These are the words that the prophet spoke of Jesus many hundreds of years before he came to the earth. Philip began with those words, and told the Ethiopian nobleman all about Christ. And the man believed, and took into his heart the word of the Lord. As they went on the way, they came to some water, and the nobleman said, "See, here is water! Why may I not be baptized?"

And Philip said to him, "If you believe with all your heart, you may be baptized."

And he answered, "I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God."

Then the nobleman gave order for the chariot to stand still; and Philip and the man went down into the water together, and he baptized him as a follower of Christ. And when they came up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord took Philip away, so that the nobleman saw him no more; but he went on his way home, happy in the Lord.

Philip went next to a city near the shore, and there he preached; and from that place he went northward through the cities by the Great Sea, preaching in them all, until he came to Caesarea, and at Caesarea he stayed for many years.