Acts 8:24 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Acts 8:24, NIV: Then Simon answered, 'Pray to the Lord for me so that nothing you have said may happen to me.'

Acts 8:24, ESV: And Simon answered, “Pray for me to the Lord, that nothing of what you have said may come upon me.”

Acts 8:24, KJV: Then answered Simon, and said, Pray ye to the Lord for me, that none of these things which ye have spoken come upon me.

Acts 8:24, NASB: But Simon answered and said, 'Pray to the Lord for me yourselves, so that nothing of what you have said may come upon me.'

Acts 8:24, NLT: 'Pray to the Lord for me,' Simon exclaimed, 'that these terrible things you've said won't happen to me!'

Acts 8:24, CSB: "Pray to the Lord for me," Simon replied, "so that nothing you have said may happen to me."

What does Acts 8:24 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Simon is a magician in the city of Samaria. He witnessed his neighbors receiving the Holy Spirit by the hands of Peter and John. It's unclear if Simon performed magic through the power of demons, or if he was a complete fraud. Either way, he knows real power when he sees it, and immediately understands the financial potential of the gift Peter and John have, so he offers to buy it from them (Acts 8:5–19).

Peter vehemently rejects him. This is the power of the Living God, not some grifter's trick. To even suggest such a wicked thing reveals a bitter and sinful heart (Acts 8:20–23).

Simon is stunned. He recognizes his inability to properly stand before the God he has disrespected, so he asks Peter to be a liaison. His request is appropriate; we are to pray for others (James 5:16; 1 Timothy 2:1–3; Galatians 6:2) as Jesus did (Luke 22:32; John 17:11, 17). Still, there's no indication Simon wants to repent; he just wants to escape punishment. Christians are called to a sincere love of that which is good—not merely to avoid consequences. Heartfelt repentance is something good spiritual leaders encourage in others. As Paul will later write, "The aim of our charge is love that issues from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith" (1 Timothy 1:5).

The Bible does not mention Simon again. It seems he could have truly repented and become part of the Samaritan church. Some church tradition says that Simon created a career out of contradicting Christians. Some say he was the founder of a Gnostic sect. If so, he rejected God even after facing the power of the Holy Spirit and the conviction of Peter and John. That is the definition of an apostate (Hebrews 6:4–6).