Acts 8:25 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Acts 8:25, NIV: After they had further proclaimed the word of the Lord and testified about Jesus, Peter and John returned to Jerusalem, preaching the gospel in many Samaritan villages.

Acts 8:25, ESV: Now when they had testified and spoken the word of the Lord, they returned to Jerusalem, preaching the gospel to many villages of the Samaritans.

Acts 8:25, KJV: And they, when they had testified and preached the word of the Lord, returned to Jerusalem, and preached the gospel in many villages of the Samaritans.

Acts 8:25, NASB: So, when they had solemnly testified and spoken the word of the Lord, they started back to Jerusalem, and were preaching the gospel to many villages of the Samaritans.

Acts 8:25, NLT: After testifying and preaching the word of the Lord in Samaria, Peter and John returned to Jerusalem. And they stopped in many Samaritan villages along the way to preach the Good News.

Acts 8:25, CSB: So, after they had testified and spoken the word of the Lord, they traveled back to Jerusalem, preaching the gospel in many villages of the Samaritans.

What does Acts 8:25 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

After King Solomon died, his son Rehoboam took the throne of the nation of Israel. He was a cruel and foolish king, and Jeroboam soon rose up to lead the ten northern tribes to secede from Judah. To keep his kingdom politically and religiously separated from their brothers, Jeroboam created two golden calves and presented them as the gods of the northern kingdom of Israel (1 Kings 12).

After generations of idolatry, God allowed the Assyrians to conquer the northern kingdom of Israel and exile most of the people. When the king of Assyria brought in foreigners to settle the land, they were attacked by lions. They realized the territory had a different God, so they added God worship to their pagan practices (2 Kings 17). They never fully understood how to worship God (Ezra 4:1–3), and by the time of Jesus, the Jews despised their mixed-ethnic, religiously syncretic neighbors (John 4:9).

But God's plan was always to redeem the Samaritans. Even though John and his brother James offered to call fire down on a Samaritan village that rejected Jesus (Luke 9:51–56), Jesus promised a Samaritan woman that her people would soon learn to worship God "in spirit and truth" (John 4:24). He also made a Samaritan the hero of one of His most famous parables (Luke 10:25–37).

Before Jesus ascended into heaven, He laid out the apostles' work. They were to be His "witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth" (Acts 1:8). At this point, most of the Jesus-followers had fled Jerusalem because of Saul's persecution (Acts 8:1–4). When Philip left, he took the good news about Jesus to Samaria, and Peter and John have come to validate Philip's teaching and welcome the Samaritans to the church (Acts 8:5–17). In their work, God is repairing the rift that tore in the time of Rehoboam and Jeroboam and reuniting Israel and Judah.

From here, the forgiveness of Jesus will spread even farther. Philip will return to Judea and lead an Ethiopian official to salvation (Acts 8:26–40). Saul, the persecutor of the church, will come to Christ (Acts 9). Peter will watch as the Holy Spirit descends on a household of Gentiles (Acts 10). And others who fled Jerusalem will take the gospel far north, to Antioch, starting a wave that will spread all over Europe (Acts 11:19–30).