Studying a Passage in Context
1) How does it start?
2) What is its context?
What were the allegations?
3) Analyze how he responded to the question.
“Are these things so?” (Acts 7:1)
“We heard him speak blasphemous words against Moses and against God” (Acts 6:11).
“We have heard him say that this Nazarene, Jesus, will destroy this place and alter the customs which Moses handed down to us” (Acts 6:14).
Making Observations in this passage
What people are actually mentioned?
What is said of persecution and opposition?
What is said about the Law and the God’s house?
When God specially reveals Himself to His people, they often find difficulties and opposition.
The Law is one great revealing of God’s glory, but the people rejected the Lawgiver and the Law.
Making Conclusions for this passage
Stephen was accused of speaking against “this holy place and the Law,” but find that the Old Testament already spoke about them. The Old Testament revealed that a greater one was coming that would reveal truth and righteousness and that no place on earth could suit His majesty.
- • Became jealous of Joseph (Acts 7:9)
• There arose another king (7:18)
• Mistreated our fathers (7:19)
• Did not understand (7:25)
• Moses fled (7:29)
Shall raise up for you a prophet like me from your brethren (Acts 7:37).
Jesus was this prophet who was rejected by His people. In as much as the Jewish leaders rejected Christ, they rejected the God. Those who persecute the righteous ones that God sends are ones who keep not the Law (not Stephen). It is at this point the Jewish leaders stoned Stephen (illegal) and proved their hardened hearts. They prove by Stephen’s stoning that they have rejected God and His Law.