Summary: Share your faith
Average Christian is about as likely to join the Mafia as seriously live like Jesus.
Paraphrase Acts 6:1-7 - read vs.. 5 & 8 Stephen a spiritual redwood
Read vs.. 8-15 Opposition from former slaves, not slaves to Temple rituals
Charged with speaking blasphemy against Moses and God and the Holy place (Temple) Sound familiar?
Face shined - like an angel - (Moses’ face shone)
Acts 7 Abraham - read vs. 6 - strangers even slaves
Joseph - rejected - now the leader and savior
Moses (false charges of badmouthing) vs.. 20-22 no ordinary child
Vs. 29 Moses a foreigner
Vs. 35 Moses rejected, now savior and leader - still 40 years foreigner
Tabernacle (temple forerunner)
But - vs. 48-50 God is not the settling down type God isn’t limited to a house or Temple
Both barrels - vs.. 51 - 53 you always resist the Holy Spirit - Gnashing teeth
Response vs.. 54 - 8:1a Vs. 56 - God and Jesus at the same plane - (cover my ears!) - no trial - Lynching!
On that day great persecution broke out, the church was scattered BUT NOT SILENCED!
Stephen had Opportunity Why talk about slavery in Egypt? Identify with Freedman. Focus on the heritage of forever being a foreigner in a strange land (this world is not my home - Abe - Joseph - Moses - now the Greeks?
Courage Was Stephen crazy to die at the hands of these fanatics?
Why give his life over these arguments? Not enough to believe you must care
You will give your life for whatever you value most You will sacrifice to and for whatever you worship - you cant help it. 80 hr a week job, $12,000 ring, $40000 car
Died in 1985. Mr. Kresge: He was the most dedicated Christian layman I was privileged to serve in 50 years of ministry. He was up at 4:30 a.m. in the morning; spent an hour to an hour and a half reading the Bible and praying--along with Mrs. Kresge. Twice a week he attended an early-morning prayer group of men. At one time, in my presence, he gave ten $900,000 trusts. When K-Mart voted to sell beer and wine, he gave away all the K-Mart stock he owned including, $1 million dollars to the Duke University Divinity School
Self- Control -Flinch - self control Baby do you love me?
He got the story out before getting stoned
What did that vision mean for Stephen?
How did it change him? It’s high time you heard Jesus call your name
What prepared him to stand up for Jesus? It was a life of service.
Remind people of the opportunity for Baptism - to stand up for Jesus in 3 weeks.
1 Pet. 3:15
Show a scar to a neighbor - tell them how you got it , now the other one of you pretend to be Jesus - Jesus will show His scar and tell how he gets it.