I would like to know if the Philip who baptized the eunuch in Acts 8 is Philip the disciple or the deacon mentioned in Acts 6

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It seems to be commonly held that Philip referred to here is the same as the deacon in chapter 6. The twelve disciples while they are mentioned in the book of Acts do not seem to be as much in the lime light. Peter is a major player in the first part of Acts and Paul, though not one of the twelve, in the second. The Philip spoken of in chapter 8 is clearly an evangelist in light of the ministry he performed. In Acts 21 we read of Philip the evangelist who was one of the seven deacons. And interestingly enough his residence is in Caesarea where Philip in chapter 8 ended up at the conclusion of his evangelistic tour. I would say the Philip referred to chapter 6, 8, and 21 is the same person. The deacon not the disciple.

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I strongly think that Philip in Acts 8 is one of the sevens chosen in Acts 6. This thought based on the preceding narration in Acts 8:1, "except the Apostles".

  • Good contextual clue!
    – curiousdannii
    Sep 13 '18 at 22:35

The Phillip of Acts 8 was most likely the Apostle and not the deacon described in Acts 6 as is commonly held. One need only look at the reason the deacons in Acts 6 were chosen. Acts 6:2-4 make it clear that they were chosen to free up the Apostles for preaching the word. God knew the Apostles needed a nudge to leave Jerusalem. Gaza and Azotus were not far way anyway. Finally Luke called the book Acts of the Apostles, not Acts of the Deacons or Acts of the Disciples or Acts of the Evangelists.

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Acts 6:

5 This proposal pleased the whole group. They chose Stephen [1], a man full of faith and of the Holy Spirit; also Philip [2], Procorus [3], Nicanor [4], Timon [5], Parmenas [6], and Nicolas [7] from Antioch, a convert to Judaism.

Philip was #2 in this list of seven.

Persecution came, Acts 8:

1b On that day a great persecution broke out against the church in Jerusalem, and all except the apostles were scattered throughout Judea and Samaria. 2Godly men buried Stephen and mourned deeply for him.

Stephen the #1 on the list of seven was dead. Apostles stayed put. Others were scattered.

4 Those who had been scattered preached the word wherever they went. 5 Philip went down to a city in Samaria and proclaimed the Messiah there.

Philip the #2 on the list left Jerusalem. He didn't want to stick around and get stoned to death like his predecessor.

The Bible does not explicitly mention that this Philip is one of the Seven but it is likely that he is based on the following two contextual clues:

  1. Philip was not an apostle.
  2. Philip was #2 in the list of Seven right after Stephen.

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