Powered by 4 - September 9, 2016

Supernatural Under Fire

Today's reading: Acts 7:1-60

Whether it's front and center or behind the scenes, the Holy Spirit's presence and empowering have been evident throughout the first chapters of Acts, and that continues to be the case with the account of Stephen. Luke very specifically points out the fact that Stephen was filled with the Holy Spirit as he served the church, and then when we reach Acts 7, we see Stephen empowered in a supernatural way when he is brought before the Jewish council.

The Holy Spirit's presence was visually evident through his appearance, but Stephen's empowering by the Holy Spirit was also evident in his words and actions right up and through his final breath. The high priest got more than he bargained for when he asked Stephen about the charge of blasphemy brought against him. Supernaturally filled with God’s power, Stephen delivers a powerful and artful defense. Not only is he extremely articulate in his delivery, his sermon of sorts highlights his exceptional knowledge of the scriptures and Jewish laws, he provides with detail and accuracy a complete historical account of the nation of Israel, and his logical and clear argument reveals the wicked and sinful hearts of those who are opposing and persecuting him.

What's one thing you noticed or learned about the Holy Spirit from the first seven chapters of Acts? As a Christ-follower, how does knowing that the Holy Spirit is living within you influence your thinking and give you encouragement? Tami

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