Saturday 1-30-16 (Home in Modesto, California)
Scripture reading for today: Exodus 25 – 27 Acts 6
S=Scripture O=Observation A=Application P=Prayer SOAP for the soul.
S. Acts 6:5 And they chose Stephen, a man full of faith and the Holy Spirit
Vs 8 And Stephen, full of faith and power, did great wonders and signs among the people.
Vs 15 And all who sat in the council, looking steadfastly at him, saw his face as the face of an angel. NKJV
O. So many new believers had been added to the church that now there was a group of Hellenists widows (Greek speaking widows) that were complaining of being left out of the daily distribution of food or financial help. Apparently this group had set themselves apart or maybe were pushed aside. A meeting was called and seven deacons were chosen to handle this mundane business, so that the apostles could dedicate themselves to spiritual ministry. Stephen was the first deacon chosen. He stood out for he was full of the Holy Spirit and faith. I suppose he fulfilled his role as deacon, but soon God was using his faith to do what the apostles were doing. But his bold preaching, his wonderful miracles and his Holy Spirit power soon got him into trouble.
A. Here is a sure recipe for how to get yourself in trouble: Just get filled with the Holy Spirit and boldness and go to preachin’ outside the church building. You are bound to start an argument. Stephen did. But his disputers were not able to resist the wisdom and the Spirit by which he spoke. (Acts 6:10) NKJV So they took him to court and resorted to false witnesses. Finally the court gives Stephen the floor to defend himself. And everybody present saw something different about his face... angelic... maybe lit up like a 500 watt bulb.
P. Lord Jesus I notice that this deacon did not stick with “deaconing.” He went to the streets and got to meddlin’. And when he got in trouble Your Holy Spirit lit up his face. I’d like to have a dose of “angel-face” when I stand up to preach. Yes, it is true Stephen saw no converts that day, but there was a young guy named Saul that held the clothing of his murderers. He never forgot that angelic face. He was later powerfully converted and became a missionary to the nations. Could I dare to ask You for a dose of “angel-face?” Amen.