Archive for Monday, February 8, 2010

Acts 7:54-56, 59-60
When they heard this, they were furious and gnashed their teeth at him. But Stephen, full of the Holy Spirit, looked up to heaven and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing at the right hand of God. “Look,” he said, “I see heaven open and the Son of Man standing at the right hand of God.” While they were stoning him, Stephen prayed, “Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.” Then he fell on his knees and cried out, “Lord, do not hold this sin against them.” When he had said this, he fell asleep.

When you read chapter 7 of Acts, you really start to wonder if Stephen was stark raving mad! He was falsely accused of speaking words of blasphemy against Moses and against God and when asked to justify himself, he chose to lecture the temple authorities, his accusers and everyone present at the Sanhedrin about how they like their forefathers murdered Jesus the savior, the prophets, and lived far from the law set out by God to Moses. Was that not fool hardy? Couldn’t he have just not agreed and let them punish him with a jail term of a pat on the wrist rather than enrage them to stone him to death? Was there any point?

If you verse 58 and you will notice that Stephen’s clothes were given to Saul, one of his accusers and a man who was determined to reach the echelons of priesthood by virtue of catching all the believers in Jesus Christ and putting them to death. A little while after this incident, Saul is transformed into Paul, a man after God’s own heart who gave up this treacherous life to seek God and lead thousands to Christ. What might sound insignificant in Stephen’s death has significance to Saul before his conversion to Paul. He later said in Phil. 1:21 “For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain”. There is no coincidence or chance with God. Are you willing to live for God’s glory?

In His Loving Service,

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