So the eunuch answered Philip and said, “I ask you, of whom does the prophet say this, of himself or of some other man?” Then Philip opened his mouth, and beginning at this Scripture, preached Jesus to him. Now as they went down the road, they came to some water. And the eunuch said, “See, here is water. What hinders me from being baptized?”
Then Philip said, “If you believe with all your heart, you may.”
And he answered and said, “I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.”
So he commanded the chariot to stand still. And both Philip and the eunuch went down into the water, and he baptized him.
Good morning friends. Everything in the bible serves a purpose, and are as relevant today as when they were inscribed. If this is not the case with you; then, like the Ethiopian Eunuch in our opening verses, I pray that you encounter a Philip to help aid your understanding. The bible also provides us with snippets and behind the scene footages of God’s big picture. I don’t know about you; but, every time I unveil or bump into these nuggets, I’m left in awe of His beauty and splendour.
By way of background, let us uncover some uncomfortable truths about this story. First stop, let’s checkout the definition of a eunuch. A eunuch can be defined as a man who has been castrated, especially (in the past) one employed to guard the women’s living areas at an oriental court. Eunuch’s were mostly slaves dedicated for service in the royal courts. In order to prevent the possibility of slave ancestry within royal lineage, they had to be made ineffective to procreate. These people were mostly prepared, educated and trained for this purpose from a very early age. And because slaves were properties of their owners, they had no rights; so, the surgery was carried out against their will. I hasten to add here that this practice was not condoned by God who’s instruction to humankind after creation was to be fruitful and multiply, not even animals were to be castrated under His laws. In the spirit of brevity we won’t explore this any further.
So, who is a eunuch today? I think a eunuch is anyone that has been shaped by situations beyond their control. For instance: someone abused as a child, modern day slaves, people affected by re-engineering of human hormones, through the effects of poisonous chemicals within our food chain and the environment…
In these passages, God demonstrates His love for all regardless of race, sexual orientation or none, background, or gender by breaking cultural convention to reach out to this fellow who was genuinely in a quest for the truth.
The Eunuch had made the effort to travel to Jerusalem on pilgrimage, even though he had limited understanding of his new found faith. In the same vain dear friends, God is no respecter of persons. He is still in the business of revealing Himself to anyone who truly desires to know Him today, even as He did then.
In the words of the Ethiopian Eunuch, “What hinders me from being baptised?”, and I hear God say, “Nothing. Just believe with all your heart”.