But he, filled with the Holy Spirit, looked up intently to 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 in a loud voice, covered their ears, and rushed upon him together. They threw him out of the city, and began to stone him. The witnesses laid down their cloaks at the feet of a young man named Saul. As they were stoning Stephen, he called out, “Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.” Then he fell to his knees and cried out in a loud voice, “Lord, do not hold this sin against them”; and when he said this, he fell asleep.
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1 Kings 8:1-66
”GRANDMA! … andma … andma …”
From the back seat, Gage is practicing echoes. Next to him is Maddy. At six, she thinks her big brother is the best thing walking. So she imitates him.
”andma … andma”
”This is your CONSCIENCE-NESS …. onscience-ness … onscience-ness … “ Gage continues.
“Onscience-ness … onscience-ness …” Maddy mimics.
I never did find out what horrible thing my “conscience-ness” was trying to tell me, because Gage remembered a joke.
”Hey! Want to hear a joke?”
If Gage is a joke-teller, then Maddy wants to be a joke-teller too. “I know a joke too!!”
That’s just the way it is when you love, admire and look up to someone. You want to be just like them, and because you watch them so intently, their character and their words rub off on you.
As Stephen was dying at the hands of the religious leaders, he had a courage-imbuing glimpse of his friend and Savior watching him from heaven. The Bible doesn’t tell us this, but I’m convinced that one glimpse gave Stephen the peace to endure his death.
And then, at the last, he asked God to forgive his killers.
Now where do you suppose he learned that?