vv 20-23 “May your money be destroyed with you for thinking God’s gift can be bought! You can have no part in this, for your heart is not right with God. Repent of your wickedness and pray to the Lord. Perhaps he will forgive your evil thoughts, for I can see that you are full of bitter jealousy and are held captive by sin.”
This man Simon had a great reputation – ‘Everyone, from the least to the greatest, often spoke of him as “the Great One—the Power of God.”’ Then he heard the good news of Jesus and he became a believer. V 13 reminds us ‘Then Simon himself believed and was baptized.’ Everything was fine to that point, but he hadn’t really got the message of Grace – something you can’t buy. It is his name that gives rise to the word ‘Simony’ which means to buy ecclesiastical privilege or power. The old ideas of buying God’s gifts had stuck in Simon’s heart, and it was there that God’s transforming power was needed. All the outward signs were just fine; he followed Philip and was baptised but there was something wrong deep down inside. Do you remember yesterday’s reading about the heart being deceitful? Well, that was where Simon was at and change of heart was needed. Was there a change in him? His request for prayer indicates that something was going on inside him, but what do you think?