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The Real Hero

Daily Reading: Acts 7

Scripture Focus: And Stephen said: “Brothers and fathers, hear me..." (Acts 7.2)

Devotional Thought: Stephen, the first Christian Martyr, was a hero. He preached the longest sermon that Luke recorded in Acts. That makes him my hero!

There is so much contained in Stephen's heroic sermon, made under threat of death. Stephen argued his points for Christianity from Israel’s history as recorded in the Old Testament:

  • First, the activity of God is not confined to the geographical land of Israel. God spoke to Abraham in Mesopotamia and Haran. God blessed Joseph in Egypt. God spoke to Moses in the desert near Sinai during the incident with the burning bush. God performed wonders and signs in Egypt, the Red Sea, and the desert, and God gave His people the law at Mount Sinai.

  • Second, worship that is acceptable to God is not confined to the Jerusalem Temple. The burning bush was holy ground, and Moses had to remove his sandals there. Moses encountered God on Mount Sinai and was given the living word. Stephen states that God was independent of any temple.

  • Third, the Jews had constantly rejected God’s representatives. Joseph was rejected by the patriarchs. Moses was rejected when he tried to intervene in a quarrel with two Jews. Yet God in his grace sent Moses to be Israel’s deliverer.

All of this points to Jesus: 1) Jesus showed us that our God is not confined to one area or one person. He can reach us anywhere, and he can hear us from anywhere as well; 2) Jesus also taught that real worship that pleases God is from the heart. 3) Jesus is living (and dying and living again!) proof that our God never leaves us nor does He forsake us.

Jesus is the real hero!

Pastor Steve Sears

Prayer: Lord, help us to know you are always present in our lives even though sometimes we may not see what you are doing behind the scenes. Help us to know we can worship you anywhere at any time and that you will never leave us nor forsake us. Amen.

Psalm of the Day: 6 Let not those who hope in you be put to shame through me, O Lord GOD of hosts; let not those who seek you be brought to dishonor through me, O God of Israel. 7 For it is for your sake that I have borne reproach, that dishonor has covered my face. 8 I have become a stranger to my brothers, an alien to my mother's sons. 9 For zeal for your house has consumed me, and the reproaches of those who reproach you have fallen on me. 10 When I wept and humbled my soul with fasting, it became my reproach. 11 When I made sackcloth my clothing, I became a byword to them. 12 I am the talk of those who sit in the gate, and the drunkards make songs about me. (Psalms 69:6-12)

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