¶ Saul had pleasure in his death. At that time there was a great persecution against the congregation which was at Ierusalem, and they were all scattered abroad thorowout the regions of Jury and Samaria, except the apostles. Then devout men dressed Steven, and made great lamentation over him. Saul made havoc of the congregation entering into every house, and drew out both man and woman, and thrust them into prison. They that were scattered abroad went every where preaching the word. Then came Philip into a city of Samaria, and preached Christ unto them. And the people gave heed unto those things which Philip spake with one accord, in that they heard and saw the miracles which he did. For unclean spirits crying with loud voice, came out of many which were possessed of them. Many taken with palsies, and many that halted were healed. And there was great joy in that city. And there was a certain man called Simon, which beforetime in the same city, used witchcraft and bewitched the people, saying that he was a man that could do great things. Whom they regarded, from the least to the greatest saying: this is that power of God, which is called great. Him they set much by, because of long time with sorcery he had deluded their wits. As soon as they believed Philip's preaching of the kingdom of God and of the name of Iesu Christ, they were baptised both men and women. Then Simon himself believed and was baptised. And continued with Philip, and wondered beholding the miracles and signs, which were shewed.
¶ When the Apostles which were at Ierusalem heard say that Samaria had received the word of God: they sent unto them Peter and Ihon, which when they were come, prayed for them, that they might receive the holy ghost. For as yet he was come on none of them: But they were baptised only in the name of Christ Iesu. Then laid they their hands on them, and they received the holy ghost.
¶ When Simon saw that thorow laying on of the Apostles' hands on them, the holy ghost was given: he offered them money saying: Give me also this power, that on whomsoever I lay hands, he may receive the holy ghost. Then said Peter unto him: Perish thou and thy money together. For thou wenest that the gift of God may be obtained with money? thou hast neither part nor fellowship in this business. For thy heart is not right in the sight of God. Repent therefore of this thy wickedness, and pray God that the thought of thine heart may be forgiven thee. For I perceive that thou art full of bitter gall, and wrapped in iniquity.
¶ Then answered Simon and said: Pray ye to the Lord for me that none of these things which ye have spoken fall on me. And they when they had testified, and preached the word of the Lord returned to Ierusalem and preached the gospel in many cities of the Samaritans.
¶ Then the angel of the Lord spake unto Philip saying: Arise and go towards midday unto the way which leadeth from Ierusalem unto Gaza, which is in the desert. He arose and went on, and behold a man of Ethiopia which was gelded, and of great authority with Candace queen of the Ethiophians, which had the rule of all her treasure, came to Ierusalem for to pray. As he returned home again sitting in his chariot he read Esay the prophet.
¶ The spirit said unto Philip: Go near and join thyself to yonder chariot. Philip ran to him, and heard him read Esay the prophet and said: Understandest thou what thou readest? And he said: how can I, except I had a guide? And he desired Philip that he would come up and sit with him. The tenor of the scripture which he read was this. He was led as a sheep to be slain: And like a lamb dumb before his shearer, so opened he not his mouth, in that he submitted himself, his judgement was exalted: who shall declare his generation? for his life is taken from the earth. The gelded man answered Philip and said: I pray thee of whom speaketh the prophet this? of himself? or of some other man?
¶ Philip opened his mouth, and began at the same scripture, and preached unto him Iesus. And as they went on their way, they came unto a certain water, and the gelded man said: See here is water, what shall let me to be baptised? Philip said unto him: If thou believe with all thine heart, thou mayst. He answered saying: I believe that Iesus Christ is the son of God. And commanded the chariot to stand still. And they went down both into the water: both Philip and also the gelded man. And he baptised him. As soon as they were come out of the water the spirit of the Lord caught away Philip. And the gelded man saw him no more. And he went on his way rejoicing: but Philip was found at Azotus. And he walked thorow out the country preaching in their cities, till he came to Cesarea.
© Faith of God
William Tyndale 1526