Philip, the great evangelist, is in the midst of a wonderfully amazing, overwhelming and even stupendously unexpected revival in the region of Samaria. He has fled from Jerusalem under the persecution of Saul, and immediately begun preaching and teaching the Word of God.
People are coming to the Lord and being baptized, and the church is growing by leaps and bounds.
This is the kind of ministry any evangelist would love to be part of. A previously hostile crowd of Samaritans has been broken by the love of Jesus, the Word of God, and the power of the Holy Spirit, and large numbers of people are repenting of their sin and coming to Jesus. There is real power being worked here, and even a sorcerer who previously operated in demonic power has seen the truth of God’s power and relented to it and prayed to receive God’s grace. Amazing grace, how sweet the sound!
Can you imagine leaving THIS kind of ministry?
Along comes an angel of the Lord, to inform Philip Jesus has a new plan for his life. But wait – why would Jesus interrupt such a successful ministry, telling Philip to leave this place? Hundreds, if not thousands are coming to Jesus. What could possibly be the reason Jesus desires Philip to leave?
The reason is unknown. Undefined. Philip is simply told to, “go toward the south along the road which goes down from Jerusalem to Gaza.” Reality: The Lord is telling Philip to leave this populated area where a great revival is taking place – to go into the desert? (This is what awaits Philip.)
And this is how we are to operate in the perfect will of God. Philip went. Philip went where he was told to go when he was told to go. Philip went without having the slightest idea why he was being told to go there. Philip left behind a burgeoning successful ministry – but for what?
This is why Philip was successful for the Lord wherever he went. The Lord always went with Philip, because Philip always went with the Lord. Philip was directable. Philip was submissive. He understood the Lord would inform him at each step what he would need to know. Philip totally trusted God with his life. This is the very essence of God’s will for each of us.