Friday, February 17, 2012

Acts 6:8-10

Summary retelling of Acts 6:8-10:

Stephen – one of the seven who were just chosen in the prior passage – was filled with all kinds of grace and spiritual power.  God was on display before the people through Stephen.  Some Jewish people from outside of Jerusalem began to take issues with what he was teaching.  So they began to argue with him, but they were unable to withstand his teaching because he was teaching with God’s wisdom and the Holy Spirit. 

Thoughts for Today:
First Thought:
The word here that is used for “power” in the original Greek language (in which the Bible is written) is “dynamis.”  (Written in English Letters, of course)  This word is the root word for English words like dynamite, dynamic, and dynamo.  Each of those concepts speak about power in terms of “explosiveness.”  Dynamite is obvious explosive.  A dynamic speaker is someone who gets your attention – usually through dramatic means.  The point here is that when God truly gets a hold of someone, the displayed of God in that person is noticeable.

Have you ever had a moment where people noticed God in you?  Do you have many of those moments or only a few of them?

Second Thought:
The Jews take issue with what Stephen says.  They argue with him.  Hopefully by this point in the text this doesn’t surprise you anymore.  Here is another speaker filled with the Holy Spirit and ready to go out and teach people about Jesus who comes under the scrutiny of other “spiritual leaders.”  Here is another person who experiences a roadblock in their effort to tell people about Jesus Christ.  It is a very repeatable pattern in Acts and it likewise is a very repeatable pattern in life.

Why do you think it is so easy to come under pressure when all a person wants to do is talk about Jesus?  What kind of things than become roadblocks to a person talking about Jesus?  Are all of the potential roadblocks things that we might consider “bad” or do “good” things occasionally get in our way, too?

Third Thought:
People argue with Stephen, but they cannot win.  They cannot overcome his wisdom and logic because his wisdom and logic are from the Lord.  Seriously, how many of us genuinely think that we can win an argument with God?  When we speak out of the wisdom that God gives to us rather than our own wisdom, we need not fear being rebuked or rebutted.  Surely it will happen and people will offer up their rebuttal; we just need not fear it.

Why is it important to understand that God is irrefutable?  How does that understanding affect how we approach our mission from Christ to the world?

Passage for Tomorrow: Acts 6:11-15
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