Simon was a Samarian Sorcerer who claimed to have control over the spirit realm. Simon’s fame was injured by Apostle Philip who performed miracles with the help of the Holy Spirit. Simon would later become a Christ
When Simon 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.” ACTS 8:18–19
Before the gospel came to Samaria, Simon was a minor phenomenon with a major ego. Pretending to be someone important perhaps even claiming to be the incarnation of God Himself (depending on the meaning of the phrase “Great Power” in Acts 8:10)—Simon wowed the people with his sorcery, convincing them that he exercised control over the spiritual realm. In a time when most people assumed the existence of a spiritual world and believed that it was not likely a benevolent force
sorcerers like Simon were in great demand.
But all that was before the arrival of Philip, the man famous for taking the gospel to unexpected places. As a follower of the resurrected Jesus, Philip possessed a power that made Simon look like the conjurer of cheap tricks by comparison. Even Simon was impressed so much so that he “believed and was baptized” (Acts 8:13).
However, Simon seems to have been drawn to the power rather than to its source. When Peter and John came to impart the Holy Spirit to the Samaritan believers, Simon was beside himself. Desperate for his former glory, he offered the apostles money in exchange for the ability to dispense God’s Spirit. After all, he had spent years pretending to do just that; now, he thought, the real thing was within his grasp!
How wrong he was. Enraged, Peter reduced Simon to a whimpering wreck, denying him any part in their ministry and warning him to beg God’s forgiveness before it was too late. Nothing more is said about Simon, except that he begged Peter to pray on his behalf now afraid to even speak to the God whose power he just tried to purchase.
Simon had a fundamentally flawed understanding of the Holy Spirit.
While Peter and John freely shared the Spirit, empowering all who believed, Simon saw the Holy Spirit as a means of gaining power for himself some deep magic that he could dispense for a price. Peter and John did not use their status to control others but to release them from sin so they could experience Christ’s promise of true liberation.