Takeaway: Verse 15
At this point everyone in the high council stared at Stephen, because his face became as bright as an angel’s.
Welcome to The Bible for Busy People. I’m Erica Parkerson. This is the place where we meet up to read half a chapter of God’s Word together and remember how loved we are. Jesus extends an amazing invitation to us in the Bible. He says, come to me and I WILL give you rest. This is us RSVPing: Yes!! to that invitation. So, take a deep breath and let’s get started.
Today’s episode is called,” The Face of an Angel”. Before we dive in and read the rest of Acts chapter six, join me in a word of prayer. Father, we come to you in the name of Jesus. Oh, we are indeed busy, busy people, but we pause. I feel like we’re sitting on a picnic blanket with you, the bread of life, the living water, and we pause to refresh in your presence. And Lord, we thank you for sitting on the picnic blanket of life with us. We give you these next few minutes and of course our lives. We ask you to open our eyes and our hearts to what you would have us to see and understand in your word today. It’s in Jesus name we pray. Amen.
Okay, last time we met, we saw that the apostles appointed seven godly men in charge of the food program, of feeding all of the people who belonged to the early church. It was a time where all these brand-new Christians were sharing their lives. They would pool the money they earned from their properties; they were just literally doing life together. Sharing food, sharing possessions, sharing life. It was a very unique time, and it was wonderful, but of course complaints rose up. So that’s why the apostles appointed seven men to be in charge of feeding the people. One of these men was Stephen. And today, and over the next few days, we are gonna get super tight with Stephen.
All right, let’s see what Luke, the doctor, the reporter has to share with us today. Again, he didn’t witness what Jesus did. He wrote down the things that other people saw and witnessed and experienced. So here we go. We’re picking it up in Acts chapter six, verse eight. “Stephen, a man full of God’s grace and power, performed amazing miracles and signs among the people. But one day, some men from the synagogue of Freed Slaves, as it was called, started to debate with him. They were Jews from Cyrene, Alexandria, and the province of Asia. None of them could stand against the wisdom and the Spirit with which Stephen spoke.” This is a man who was filled to the brim and overflowing with the Holy Spirit. “So they persuaded some men to lie about Stephen saying, ‘We heard him blaspheme Moses, and even God.’ This roused the people, the elders, and the teachers of religious law. So they arrested Stephen and brought him before the high counsel.” They made up a lie and then he got arrested for the lie. “The lying witnesses said, ‘This man is always speaking against the holy Temple and against the law of Moses. We have heard him say that this Jesus of Nazareth will destroy the Temple and change the customs Moses handed down to us.’ At this point everyone in the high council stared at Stephen,” this is our takeaway verse verse 15, “because his face became as bright as an angel’s.” Ooh, I just, I get the Holy Ghost goosebumps on that one!
I love that. What did that look like? Now, I was doing a little research on this, and there’s a pastor named David online who wrote some things about this, because I was really interested. Why do you think God did that? Was it simply just evidence that the Holy Spirit was working so mightily in his life? Or was it a little throwback to our pal, Moses? You might remember, if you’ve ever read some of the Old Testament, the stories before Jesus came, that whenever Moses met with God on the mountain face to face, his face shone. He would come off that mountain, and the people knew. The Israelites knew, who were living in the desert, that he had met with God, because his face was glowing. I, wouldn’t you love to see what that looked like? And so, this pastor online was saying, perhaps God was giving a message to the Israelites who are around Stephen, and letting them know, “Just as Moses spoke on my behalf, Stephen is speaking on my behalf.” Isn’t that cool and crazy to think about? What would that look like? I’m so curious. All right, we are gonna dive into more of Stephen’s story tomorrow. Get ready, cuz we’re going to court! Acts chapter seven, next time we meet. Can’t wait.
Thank you so much for listening to the Bible for Busy People. If you need prayer or you’re ready to go a little deeper in your faith, we’ve posted some resources for you in our show notes. We’d love for you to share this podcast with a friend and leave us a review. It helps us reach even more people with the hope of Jesus. This podcast is part of Purposely, a podcast network designed with practical podcasts to help you find and live in God’s purpose for your life. Find more podcasts that will recharge you at onpurposely.com.