Now when they heard these things they were enraged, and they ground their teeth at him. But he, full of the Holy Spirit, gazed into heaven and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing at the right hand of God. And he said, “Behold, I see the heavens opened, and the Son of Man standing at the right hand of God.” But they cried out with a loud voice and stopped their ears and rushed together at him. Then they cast him out of the city and stoned him. And the witnesses laid down their garments at the feet of a young man named Saul. And as they were stoning Stephen, he called out, “Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.” And falling to his knees he cried out with a loud voice, “Lord, do not hold this sin against them.” And when he had said this, he fell asleep.
Comment: If you close your eyes and get someone to slowly read the passage to you, you can in your imagination follow on.
- You see the crowd enraged, so enraged that instead of talking they are just grinding their jaws as if ready to attack Stephan
- Keep your eyes shut, but Stephen opens his and describes what he sees – the Glory of God, with the Jesus, whom his judges have recently murdered, standing at God’s Right Hand.
- A murderous attack starts, abusive words and stones, large and small, flying at Stephen. Speaking once more, committing himself into Jesus hands, and pleading forgiveness for his murderers, Stephen dies – released from agony into the hands of Jesus!
- One of the watching angry crowd is named – Saul. Who is he?
Prayer: May I be faithful until the end, whatever it be!