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Stephen’s Forgiveness

While they were stoning him, Stephen prayed, “Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.” Then he fell on his knees and cried out, “Lord, do not hold this sin against them.” When he had said this, he fell asleep (Acts 7:59-60, NIV).

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Passing the Baton

At first glance, verses 1-3 are a disaster.

It isn’t until later that we learn that Saul’s persecution of the church will eventually lead him into leadership in the church.

Stephen is buried, Saul will become Paul.

Forgiveness

In verses 59-60, as Stephen is dying, he prays for his attackers.

Can’t say I’d be feeling so generous under these circumstances.

His response is very similar to Jesus’ “Forgive them, for they don’t know what they’re doing” request from the cross.

The Crowd Strikes Back

In verses 54-58, the crowd attacks Stephen.  Saul stands by and does cloak duty during the proceedings.

Stephen’s Attack

In verses 51-53, Stephen rips apart his listeners.

History Review: Part III

Then, in verses 20-44, Stephen summarizes Moses’ life.

History Review: Part II

Next, Stephen describes the accomplishments of Joseph and introduces Moses (vv. 9-20).

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