March 30, 2020
“Now Stephen, a man full of God’s grace and power, performed great wonders and signs among the people. Opposition arose, …But they could not stand up against the wisdom the Spirit gave him as he spoke.” – Acts 6:8-10
It’s been said that most warriors are just normal people doing the right thing day in and day out, especially when a crisis arises. Other times, it’s specific events that lead people to step-up and respond in a way that reveals tremendous resilience, courage and bravery. Sometimes it’s a combination of it all. From the classroom to the battlefield, warriors are willing to risk it all, especially in the face of opposition.
The early church was no different. The Word is filled with stories of heroic individuals willing to risk it all for their faith – Stephen was one of them. What made Stephen a warrior? Take a look at his character.
GRACE. (Acts 6:8) Grace is what God demonstrated by forgiving our sins even though we are guilty and deserve judgment. Grace is Christ taking OUR sins and dying in OUR place on the cross. Stephen was full of gratitude and humility, never forgetting for what Christ did for him on the cross.
HUMILITY. (Acts 6:10) The Bible speaks of Stephen’s great power as Christ performed incredible miracles through him. Rather than letting this boost his ego, Stephen remained humble and grateful, always pointing to the source of his power – the One True God.
WISDOM. (Acts 6:9) Stephen was smart. As a speaker, he was intelligent and knowledgeable, always relying on the Holy Spirit to guide his words even when attacked with manipulative “half-truths.”
FAITH. Stephen truly believed that because Jesus rose from the dead. Because of his faith in Christ he knew would overcome, as well. For him, death held no fear. Christ had conquered it.
How about you? Would people describe your character as full of grace, humility, wisdom, and faith? Today, ask God for a heroic character, the character of a Warrior, like Stephen by being faithful to the Lord and walking in His strength each day.