In the Book of Acts 8:9-24, a story is told of a man named Simon Magus who had practised sorcery in the city and amazed all the people of Samaria.
Scripture reveals that he had continuously boasted of his greatness, and everyone paid attention to him and exclaimed, “This man is rightly called the Great Power of God.” Scripture further reveals that when Phillip arrived in the city baptizing people, Simon Magus too believed and was baptized. When the apostles in Jerusalem later learnt that the people in Samaria had accepted Christ, they sent Peter and John to pray for them so that they would receive the Holy Spirit. They had been baptized, but were yet to receive the Holy Spirit.
When Simon Magus 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 rebuked him that the gift of God cannot be bought with money. He requested him to repent of this wickedness and ask for God’s forgiveness, which Simon did.
The above story is very interesting and communicates to our modern society whose
appetite is directed towards experiential human wonders in society that only one true God is most powerful. Satan is also capable of performing wonders, for he is a counterfeiter and copycat of God’s kingdom.
What is true though is that such wonders do not last. Satan’s power is temporary.God’spower is everlasting and eternal. Man is consistently strengthened by the poweroftheHolySpirit. This power aids man to be wise in decision- making and actions. This is the grace of God that supersedes all other earthly powers.
Simon Mogul had beenbaptizedbutlacked the empowerment of the Holy Spirit to realise and overcome his wickedness.
When the Holy Spirit convicts us, we can never be the same again in our actions and behavior, when we act upon that conviction and repent. The fruits of our work become tasteful and everyone around us feels the presence of the Holy Spirit.
Let God remain supreme in all our deeds and actions. Let our hearts be a dwelling place for the Trinity and the glory of the Lord’s name.
The writer is a lecturer at the Foundations Studies Department