Read Acts 7

Think for a moment about one or two people in your life that you truly respect and admire…someone that you look up to and desire to be like when you get older, a mentor. In the space provided, write down a few of the actions or attitudes that draw you to them. What about them would you like to imitate? In what area do they excel?

Read the account of Stephen in Acts 6:1-8 and Acts 7:54-60. Imagine being in Stephen’s shoes for a moment. In several short months, Stephen’s life had been completely turned upside down! First, he was chosen out of thousands in the Jerusalem church to help the apostles accomplish the tasks before them. He was sort of a “super servant” (Acts 6:1-6). Then, he witnessed the changed lives, some of which were Jesus’ enemies (6:7). He experienced a spiritual revolution unequaled in history, as well as a personal empowerment to see the revolution advanced (6:8). Because of that, people of the community took notice. Eventually, out of fear, they attempted to silence Stephen (6:8-15).

In Acts 7, we find Stephen giving a powerful message to a very unlikely and hostile audience. It is obvious that the truth he shared from a historical and cultural context did not sit well with many in the crowd. Declaring the truth is often offensive. The truth Stephen shared was a one-way ticket to bodily death. Isn’t it amazing how his story imitates the life of his Lord, Jesus Christ?

Day 5 of 7 from the 2010 Mission Discovery Devotional