What is very sad is when people are sharing the gospel with people and they treat them with displeasure and persecution in return. This happens a lot to God’s witnesses in the world today and in times past. I have seen this from people as I go on the streets to preach, pass out tracts, and pray with people. So many people’s ears are far from God, and therefore, they are unable to be saved. Stephen knew this also, as he was simply sharing the truth about Abraham, Moses, David, and Solomon, but the people did not want to hear any of what he said. You can read all about what Stephen said to the high priests in Acts, chapter 7. But what they did not like is when he spoke of their hypocrisy. This is what he said, “but Solomon built him an house. Howbeit the most High dwelleth not in temples made with hands; as saith the prophet, heaven is my throne, and earth is my footstool: what house will ye build me? saith the Lord: or what is the place of my rest? Hath not my hand made all these things? Ye stiffnecked and uncircumcised in heart and ears, ye do always resist the Holy Ghost: as your fathers did, so do ye. Which of the prophets have not your fathers persecuted? and they have slain them which shewed before of the coming of the Just One; of whom ye have been now the betrayers and murderers: Who have received the law by the disposition of angels, and have not kept it.” (Acts 7:47-53)
First of all, he told them that God does not dwell in temples made with hands, which I frequently tell Mormons and they also resist the truth. Then, he said told them that they are a stiffnecked people because they resist the Holy Spirit, but they cling to what they have been taught instead. This is very common in Mormonism also, where the people would rather follow their prophets than be led by the Holy Spirit. Now, concerning the Jews, they need to know that their forefathers killed Jesus, who is the Messiah and God made flesh. As for these Jews at this time, they did not like the fact that they killed the Messiah, who is Christ. As for what took place next, it reads, “when they heard these things, they were cut to the heart, and they gnashed on him with their teeth. But he, being full of the Holy Ghost, looked up stedfastly into heaven, and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing on the right hand of God, and said, Behold, I see the heavens opened, and the Son of man standing on the right hand of God. Then they cried out with a loud voice, and stopped their ears, and ran upon him with one accord, and cast him out of the city, and stoned him.” (Acts 7:54-58) He then soon passed out and died from blood trauma. So what can we learn from this encounter? That we need to stand our ground even when people are upset. Maybe one person like Saul will come of it and be saved.
Let us pray:
Oh Lord, I pray that people will desire to know You, God, and not just know the type of person people say You are. Instead, that their hearts will be for you in their thoughts and their acts. A belief is one thing, but our actions to know Your will and to follow you is another thing. And one thing that is lacking in the world we live in is the gift of the Holy Spirit. People trust in people, rather than allow themselves to be led by You. The church they go to has them locked in so that anything else seems foreign and to be shunned. Yes, God, people of many cults and false religions teach their members to not heed the teachings of any other person outside their church leaders, lest they go astray. How said is this? If more people were simply searching for truth, then they would find it in the words contained in the Bible. And yes, there are people that can help them know the truth, but their ears need to be opened to You first. Surely, You are sending out Your vessels of hope and only people who have eyes to see will know who they are. For they will see the light round about Your people as they teach, preach, and witness Your truths to the lost. We live in a dying generation where most people are going to hell because of their wickedness and false beliefs. But I still have hope that some of them will be rescued and be saved before their time is up. That is why I go forth and share the gospel with whoever will hear. I love You, Lord. I trust in You. In Your Name, Jesus, I pray this. Amen.