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 Saul, Paul And Stephen

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Acts 6

Administrative problems
Now in those days, when the number of the disciples was multiplying, there arose a murmuring amongst the Greek speaking Jews against the Hebrews, because their widows were neglected in the daily distribution. 2 And the twelve summoned the full number of the disciples to them, and said: It is not fitting that we should forsake the teaching of the word of God and instead handle finances. 3 Therefore, brothers, choose from among you seven men of good repute, full of the Spirit and of wisdom, whom we will appoint to this duty. 4 But we will continue earnestly in prayer and in the service of the word. 5 And the decision pleased the whole crowd; and they chose Stephen, a man full of faith and of the Holy Spirit, and Philip, and Prochorus, and Nicanor, and Timon, and Parmenas, and Nicolaus a proselyte of Antioch. 6 They set them before the apostles, and when they had prayed, they laid their hands upon them.
   7 And the word of God increased, and the number of the disciples multiplied greatly in Jerusalem, and a great many of the priests became obedient to the faith.

Stephen is arrested
   8 And Stephen, full of grace and power, did great wonders and signs among the people. 9 Then there arose some from what is called the Synagogue of the Freedmen (Cyrenians, Alexandrians, and those from Cilicia and Asia), disputing with Stephen. 10 And they were not able to withstand the wisdom and the Spirit by which he spoke. 11 Then they secretly induced men to say: We have heard him speak blasphemous words against Moses and God. 12 And they stirred up the people and the elders and the scribes, and came upon him and seized him, and brought him into the council, 13 and set up false witnesses, who said: This man does not cease to speak blasphemous words against this holy place and the law. 14 For we have heard him say, that this Jesus of Nazareth shall destroy this place and shall change the customs which Moses delivered to us. 15 And all that sat in the council, fastening their eyes on him, saw his face as if it had been the face of an angel.


6:2 The word of God- The [teaching of] the word of God (see v. 4). Sometimes we have to read in an ellipsis into the phrases we read in the Bible. People 2000 years ago had a different style than we have today.

6:4 Prayer was of such huge importance in the early church, and it should be with us too.

6:7 The unity achieved between the Jewish and Gentile believers in the church attracted yet more people to join. Jesus predicted that our unity would convert the world (Jn. 17:23). Our disunity will discourage people from joining Christ; because initially, the church of Jesus is all that people see of Jesus.