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1 And in those days, when the number of the disciples was multiplied, there arose a murmuring of the Grecians against the Hebrews, because their widows were neglected in the daily ministration.

2 Then the twelve called the multitude of the disciples unto them, and said, It is not reason that we should leave the word of God, and serve tables.

3 Wherefore, brethren, look ye out among you seven men of honest report, full of the Holy Ghost and wisdom, whom we may appoint over this business.

4 But we will give ourselves continually to prayer, and to the ministry of the word.

5 And the saying pleased the whole multitude: and they chose Stephen, a man full of faith and of the Holy Ghost, and Philip, and Prochorus, and Nicanor, and Timon, and Parmenas, and Nicolas a proselyte of Antioch:

6 Whom they set before the apostles: and when they had prayed, they laid their hands on them.

7 And the word of God increased; and the number of the disciples multiplied in Jerusalem greatly; and a great company of the priests were obedient to the faith.

8 And Stephen, full of faith and power, did great wonders and miracles among the people.

9 Then there arose certain of the synagogue, which is called the synagogue of the Libertines, and Cyrenians, and Alexandrians, and of them of Cilicia and of Asia, disputing with Stephen.

10 And they were not able to resist the wisdom and the spirit by which he spake.

11 Then they suborned men, which said, We have heard him speak blasphemous words against Moses, and against God.

12 And they stirred up the people, and the elders, and the scribes, and came upon him, and caught him, and brought him to the council,

13 And set up false witnesses, which said, This man ceaseth not to speak blasphemous words against this holy place, and the law:

14 For we have heard him say, that this Jesus of Nazareth shall destroy this place, and shall change the customs which Moses delivered us.

15 And all that sat in the council, looking stedfastly on him, saw his face as it had been the face of an angel.

Commentary for Acts 6

The appointment of deacons. (1-7) Stephen falsely accused of blasphemy. (8-15)1-7 Hitherto the disciples had been of one accord; this often had been noticed to their honour; but now they were multiplied, they began to murmur. The word of God was enough to take up all the thoughts, cares, and time of the apostles. The persons chosen to serve tables must be duly qualified. They must be filled with gifts and graces of the Holy Ghost, necessary to rightly managing this trust; men of truth, and hating covetousness. All who are employed in the service of the church, ought to be commended to the Divine grace by the prayers of the church. They blessed them in the name of the Lord. The word and grace of God are greatly magnified, when those are wrought upon by it, who were least likely.

8-15 When they could not answer Stephen's arguments as a disputant, they prosecuted him as a criminal, and brought false witnesses against him. And it is next to a miracle of providence, that no greater number of religious persons have been murdered in the world, by the way of perjury and pretence of law, when so many thousands hate them, who make no conscience of false oaths. Wisdom and holiness make a man's face to shine, yet will not secure men from being treated badly. What shall we say of man, a rational being, yet attempting to uphold a religious system by false witness and murder! And this has been done in numberless instances. But the blame rests not so much upon the understanding, as upon the heart of a fallen creature, which is deceitful above all things and desperately wicked. Yet the servant of the Lord, possessing a clear conscience, cheerful hope, and Divine consolations, may smile in the midst of danger and death.

Commentary by Matthew Henry, 1710.

Discussion for Acts 6

  • BSP
    Verse 11~The religious leaders trumped up charges against Stephen and accused him of blasphemy. We see the same false accusations taking place today against innocent ones.
  • BSP
    Verse 15~Stephen's face was like an angels face in that he reflected faith, serenity, calm, and complete confidence in Jehovah God.
  • Douglas Wells
    He was talking about the sin full body that the adam had. But in place to what the devil told him
  • Steve morrow
    ACTS 6:4 but we will give ourselves continually to prayer and to the ministry of the word PSALM 103:21 BLESS YOU THE LORD ALL YOU ---HIS HOSTS--- YOU MINISTERS OF HIS THAT DO HIS PLEASURE 2 CORINTHIANS 3:6 who also hath made us able ministers of the new testament not of the letter but of the spirit for the letter killeth but the spirit giveth life
  • Natukunda medius
  • A disciple
    Correction: The Angel took incense and offered it with the prayers of all Saints upon the Altar. He then took the censer and filled it with fire of the Altar of incense, and threw it into the earth; this signifying that it was for the sake of the martyrs of Jesus and the prayers borne out of His suffering Church, that wrath and the Day of the LORD comes to make an end with the wicked of the earth.
  • A disciple
    Ray; I don't understand what you mean by, "This will delay the second coming of Jesus." In Revelation it is because of the souls of the witnesses under the Altar, who are crying to the LORD for vengeance, that the Day of the LORD comes upon the ungodly! Before the seven Angels sounded their trumpets, the one Angel took hot coals from off the Altar, and offered them with the prayers of all Saints.
  • Ray321
    Acts 6:9 Then there arose certain of the synagogue, which is called the synagogue of the Libertines, and Cyrenians, and Alexandrians, and of them of Cilicia and of Asia, disputing with Stephen. Stephen had enemies which were large. Stephen was headed for persecution for the death of Jesus. This will delay the second coming of Jesus.
  • Maria Morales
    The Grecians were not gentiles, they are Jews who were Greek. The Hebrew Jews were citizens of Jerusalem. Remember, in chapter 1, it said there were Jews from all nations under heaven who were dwelling in Jerusalem.
  • Irene123
    Vs. 1-3; In those days, the Grecians were ALL Gentiles, non Jews. It was just the term the Jews used for the gentiles. The '12' were with Jesus, handled (touched) the word of life. They were the Pastors, evangelists. The disciples were the elders and saints; the elders appointed the saints for the work of supplying the needs of the needy saints. The elders had their work cut out for them. cont.

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Bible Trivia

How did the leaders of the synagogue stir up the people against Stephen?
  • With inspiring speeches
  • With solid evidence
  • With lies
  • With honest witnesses

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