Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary, 1859 edition.

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BIBLE: ACTS - Chapter 8


Philip converts the Samaritans, and baptizes the eunuch.

1 And *at that time there was raised a great persecution against the church, which was at Jerusalem, and they were all dispersed through the countries of Judea and Samaria, except the apostles.

2 And devout men took care of Stephen's funeral, and made great mourning over him.

3 But Saul ravaged the church, entering into the houses, and, dragging away men and women, committed them to prison.

4 They, therefore, that were dispersed, went about preaching the word of God.

5 And Philip going down to the city of Samaria, preached Christ to them.

6 And the people were attentive to those things which were said by Philip, with one accord hearing, and seeing the miracles which he did.

7 For unclean spirits, crying with a loud voice, went out of many who were possessed.

8 And many taken with the palsy, and that were lame, were healed.

9 There was therefore great joy in that city. But a certain man, named Simon, who before had been a magician in the city, seducing the people of Samaria, giving out that he was some great one:

10 To whom all hearkened, from the least to the greatest, saying; This man is the power of God, which is called great.

11 And they were attentive to him, because for a long time he had bewitched them with his sorceries.

12 But when they had believed Philip preaching of the kingdom of God, in the name of Jesus Christ, they were baptized both men and women.

13 Then Simon himself believed also: and being baptized, he adhered to Philip. Seeing also the wonders and exceeding great miracles which were done, he was struck with amazement.

14 Now when the apostles, who were in Jerusalem, had heard that Samaria had received the word of God, they sent to them Peter and John.

15 Who when they were come, prayed for them, that they might receive the Holy Ghost:

16 For he was not yet come upon any one of them, but they were only baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.

17 Then they laid their hands upon them, and they received the Holy Ghost.

18 And when Simon saw, that by the imposition of the hands of the apostles, the Holy Ghost was given, he offered them money,

19 Saying: Give me also this power, that on whomsoever I shall lay my hands, he may receive the Holy Ghost. But Peter said to him:

20 May thy money perish with thee: because thou hast thought that the gift of God could be purchased with money.

21 Thou hast no part, nor lot in this matter: for thy heart is not right in the sight of God.

22 Do penance, therefore, for this thy wickedness: and pray to God, if perhaps this thought of thy heart may be forgiven thee.

23 For I see thou art in the gall of bitterness, and in the bonds of iniquity.

24 Then Simon answering, said; Pray you to the Lord for me, that none of these things which you have spoken, may come upon me.

25 And they indeed having testified, and preached the word of the Lord, returned to Jerusalem, and preached the gospel to many countries of the Samaritans.

26 Now an Angel of the Lord spoke to Philip, saying: Arise, go towards the south, to the way that goeth down from Jerusalem to Gaza; this is desert.

27 And rising up, he went. And behold a man of Ethiopia, an eunuch, of great authority under Candace, the queen of the Ethiopians, who had charge over all her treasures, had come to Jerusalem to adore:

28 And he was returning, sitting in this chariot, and reading Isaias, the prophet.

29 And the Spirit said to Philip: Go near, and join thyself to that chariot.

30 And Philip running thither, heard him reading the prophet, Isaias, and he said: Thinkest thou that thou understandest what thou readest?

31 He said: How can I, unless some one shew me? And he desired Philip to come up, and sit with him.

32 And the place of the Scripture, which he was reading, was this: *As a sheep he was led to the slaughter: and like a lamb without a voice before his shearer, so opened he not his mouth.

33 In humility his judgment was taken away. Who shall declare his generation, for his life shall be taken away from the earth?

34 And the eunuch answering Philip, said: I beseech thee, of whom doth the prophet speak this? of himself, or of some other?

35 Then Philip, opening his mouth, and beginning at that Scripture, preached to him Jesus.

36 And as they went on their way, they came to a certain water: and the eunuch saith; See, here is water, what hindereth me from being baptized?

37 And Philip said: If thou believest with all thy whole heart, thou mayest. And he answering, said: I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.

38 And he commanded the chariot to stand still: and they both went down into the water, Philip, and the eunuch, and he baptized him.

39 And when they were come up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord took away Philip, and the eunuch saw him no more. And he went on his way rejoicing.

40 But Philip was found in Azotus, and passing through, he preached the gospel to all the cities, till he came to Cęsarea.



1: about the year A.D. 33.

32: Isaias liii. 7.