Simon Throws His Money Around- The Game Of Simon Says

Simon Throws His Money Around. “The Game of Simon Says” (Acts 8:9-23)

Now for some time a man named Simon had practiced sorcery in the city and amazed all the people of Samaria. He boasted that he was someone great, and all the people, both high and low, gave him their attention and exclaimed, “This man is rightly called the Great Power of God.” They followed him because he had amazed them for a long time with his sorcery. But when they believed Philip as he proclaimed the good news of the kingdom of God and the name of Jesus Christ, they were baptized, both men and women. Simon himself believed and was baptized. And he followed Philip everywhere, astonished by the great signs and miracles he saw. When the apostles in Jerusalem heard that Samaria had accepted the word of God, they sent Peter and John to Samaria. When they arrived, they prayed for the new believers there that they might receive the Holy Spirit, because the Holy Spirit had not yet come on any of them; they had simply been baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. Then Peter and John placed their hands on them, and they received the Holy Spirit. When Simon saw that the Spirit was given at the laying on of the apostles’ hands, he offered them money and said, “Give me also this ability so that everyone on whom I lay my hands may receive the Holy Spirit.” Peter answered: “May your money perish with you, because you thought you could buy the gift of God with money! You have no part or share in this ministry, because your heart is not right before God. Repent of this wickedness and pray to the Lord in the hope that he may forgive you for having such a thought in your heart. For I see that you are full of bitterness and captive to sin.”

Acts 8:9-23

Simon seems to play the part until he pulls a stunt where he whips out his coin purse to give money to Peter and says “Give me this ability also so that everyone on whom I lay my hands on may receive the Holy Spirit.” Simon missed the point that the Holy Spirit was a gift of God through the blood of Jesus Christ. He treated it like some cheap trinket that he could throw money at for his own personal use.

“Peter answered: “May your money perish with you, because you thought you could buy the gift of God with money! You have no part or share in this ministry, because your heart is not right before God. Repent of this wickedness and pray to the Lord in the hope that he may forgive you for having such a thought in your heart. For I see that you are full of bitterness and captive to sin.”

Peter saw right through him and realized Simon’s motives were sinful. He says “May your money perish with you, because you thought you could but the gift of God with money” and then adds, “Repent of this wickedness and pray to the Lord in the hope that he may forgive you for having such a thought in your heart. For I see that you are full of bitterness and captive to sin.”

Bitterness? We do not know why Simon was bitter.

Things we do know about Simon are he was a sorcerer that liked to show off.

“Now for some time a man named Simon had practiced sorcery in the city and amazed all the people of Samaria. He boasted that he was someone great, and all the people, both high and low, gave him their attention and exclaimed, “This man is rightly called the Great Power of God.” They followed him because he had amazed them for a long time with his sorcery.”

Regardless of Simon’s backstory or motivation, or reason for why he was how he was, Peter tells him to repent and pray to God in hopes the Lord would forgive him for having such a wicked thought.

Simon says, ha Simon says: “Then Simon answered, “Pray to the Lord for me so that nothing you have said may happen to me.” After they had further proclaimed the word of the Lord and testified about Jesus, Peter and John returned to Jerusalem, preaching the gospel in many Samaritan villages.

Acts 8:24-25 –

Seems like Peter does not respond further to Simon after this. Yet all we know is the story leaves off there and have no clue how Simon ended up addressing his sin.

First of all, we must realize Peter addresses the severity of Simon’s sin, he does not coddle Simon and say “Oh poor Simon, your a bitter man and you must be overcompensating because of some hurt in your life.” No Peter is bold and addresses the heart of the issue that Simon is in grievous sin and does not candy coat it. He tells him rather, “Repent of this wickedness and pray to the Lord in the hope that he may forgive you for having such a thought in your heart. For I see that you are full of bitterness and captive to sin.”

I doubt that Peter lacked compassion but rather knew that regardless of Simon’s backstory or reasons for being this way, the timeless solution for sin is still the same “Repent of this wickedness” and “Pray to the Lord in hope that he may forgive you”

Repentance and faith- Regardless of reason or surrounding details in the story. Repent and turn to Christ Jesus in faith.

Peter seems to leave the possibility that God may not forgive Simon. Yet what I think Peter is saying is Simon needs a true conversion that must have repentance and faith. Peter says “In hope that he may forgive you”

When we got saved, we repented and turned to Christ for the hope of our salvation also.

Jesus said earlier on: “37 All those the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never drive away. (John 6:37)

I believe if Simon had a true change of heart he could be forgiven too, yet Peter tells him he needs to repent and seek the Lord. Then Simon obviously freaked says “Pray to the Lord for me so that nothing you have said may happen to me.”

We don’t know what Peter said after that if anything. If we are not careful we can just end up filling in what may have been either not said at all, or what the writer of Acts may have just not recorded. It could have been that Peter did reply but Luke who recorded Acts leaves it out deeming it inpertanent dialogue.

It could be that nothing was said at all. Yet the timeless truth is that sin should be repented of and “for, “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”

(Romans 10:13)

Acts indicated Simon believed even and played church but he leaves out a crucial step, repentance of sin and exchanging his agenda for the Lord Jesus Christ’s.

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