Today’s Bible reading is Acts chapter 7
(Read the entire New Testament in 2014 by reading only one chapter each day)
It is encouraging to know that great men and women of the faith have been willing to give their lives for the sake of the Gospel. Stephen was such a man. The Bible says that Stephen was full of faith and power, and that he did great wonders and miracles among the people (Acts 6:8). Stephen was unmatched in his testimony for the Lord. Even his countenance reflected the character of God. Acts chapter 7 records Stephen’s speech. I imagine that Stephen’s speech was a lot like what Jesus said to the two disciples on the Emmaus walk. Luke chapter 24 records that Jesus expounded in all the Scriptures the things concerning Himself. As Jesus opened up the Scriptures these two disciples’ hearts were set on fire for the Lord. Stephen preached like Jesus, looked like Jesus, ministered and lived like Jesus, and when he died, he died like Jesus. From the cross Jesus cried, “Father forgive them.” As Stephen was dying he cried, “Lord, forgive them.” Everything about Stephen reminds us of Jesus. He paid the ultimate price for the Gospel by giving his life. Stephen’s life wasn’t wasted. God used Stephen’s witness to convict and eventually covert the Apostle Paul to the Christian faith. What is it about your life and mine that resembles Jesus? The more like Jesus we become the more God can use our witness.
Prayer: “Dear Father in heaven, thank You for faithful Christian witnesses like Stephen. May we be more like Jesus in everything we do. In Jesus name. Amen.”
Randy J. McPheron