I'm about to head to work but I haven't been able to read the Bible all day so I just read a little bit of Acts while I'm working through it. I'm at the part where Stephen is introduced. He is only in two chapters but his impact is so much greater. I love who he is and what he stands for. He is one of the men picked to be responsible and in prayer for the Grecian Jews and through that, he was persecuted: "These men began to argue with Stephen, but they could not stand up against his wisdom or the Spirit by whom he spoke." (6:9-10) In chapter seven, Stephen makes a speech that basically explains the things that God has done, mostly acting through Moses. When he is finished, he calls the people out on resisting God: "You stiff-necked people, with uncircumcised hearts and ears! You are just like your fathers. You always resist the Holy Spirit! Was there ever a prophet your fathers did not persecute? They even killed those who predicted the coming of the Righteous One. And now you have betrayed and murdered him-- you who have received the law that was put into effect through angels but have not obeyed it." (7:51-53)
And then they stoned him to death while he openly begged God not to hold it against them. Wow.
Stephen is just the image of uncompromising boldness and God's glory in my eyes.