Now when the apostles which were at Jerusalem heard that Samaria had received the word of God, they sent to them Peter and John:…
Peter and John represented the apostolic authority, but not as something to be imposed on believers, but as linking them with the source of spiritual gifts. Simon represented the spirit of this world in the Church - the sins of ambition, covetousness, hypocrisy, priestcraft, intimately connected with the one fatal error of admitting the world's calculations into the Church. "He offered them money." The Church has listened to such offers far too much. The Simon-spirit, the mixture of sorcery and faith, has filled some portions of the professed Church with lies and mammon-worship. Notice-
I. THE TRUE APOSTOLIC SPIRIT manifested.
1. Dependence on prayer.
2. Separation of spiritual gifts from oil money considerations.
3. Detection and denunciation of the false and sordid.
II. The CHURCH'S DANGER from the laxness of discipline.
1. Those that have "neither part nor lot in this matter" must be kept out of the number of God's people.
2. Especially must the ministry be preserved from every form of simony.
3. The bold and fearless course on the part of those in office is much the safest. Hypocrisy is weakness. Simon will succumb to Peter, if Peter only speaks out the Word of God, and stands up for purity of faith and conscientiousness. Better a poor Church with spiritual gifts, than a treasury full of hypocrites' offerings and no Holy Ghost descending on the world. - R.
Parallel VersesKJV: Now when the apostles which were at Jerusalem heard that Samaria had received the word of God, they sent unto them Peter and John: