Grace Under Fire | Edgewater Lutheran Church

August 03, 2022 Joshua LeBorious

Grace Under Fire

Grace Under Fire

Acts 6-7

Two elements of Stephen’s brief ministry recorded in these chapters stand out to me – the message he shares and the way he dies. In the message he proclaims, Stephen walks through key stories of Israel’s history from Abraham to Solomon. This gives a clear testimony to the Christocentric (centered on Christ) nature of the Old Testament. Today, we sometimes avoid the Old Testament. Some find it too legalistic; some find it boring; some find it troubling – but what Stephen saw in the Old Testament was history told in such a way that it pointed to Jesus. So, we should regularly engage with the Old Testament, looking at it as a path that points us to Christ. The message he speaks also connects with his largely Jewish audience; he speaks to their shared history in hopes of pointing them to Christ. In the same way, when we speak to our neighbors or friends or family, we speak their language to best connect them to Jesus in a way they will understand. Finally, the way Stephen dies gives credence to his words. His last words echo Christ’s from the cross (Luke 23:34) as he prays in Acts 7:60 “Lord, do not hold this sin against them.” He spoke of Jesus redeeming work and reflected that grace in an incredible way. So too, our message to the people around us must reflect in how we live our lives – with grace and love.

Today’s B.I.B.L.E. Takeaways:

Blessings from God

Stephen illustrates the radical grace the God gives to us.

Instructions for Us

Acts 7 gives us a window into what witness can look like.

Biblical Connections

Stephen connects the dots through Israel’s history. He starts with Abraham’s story, moving to Joseph and Moses, and concluding with Joshua, David, and Solomon.

Laborious Understandings

Nothing in these verses strikes me as particularly difficult to deal with.

Enjoyable Passages

I think Acts 7:60 is a powerful verse, but it’s also a little dark.

Topics to Pray About:

  • Thank God for working throughout history to bring about Christ’s victory
  • Confess to God the times when your life doesn’t reflect your Lord
  • Ask for God bless you with the bravery to speak about Christ with the people around you

In His Service,

J. LeBorious