Acts 12.1. Some versions translate the phrase tinas ton apo tes ekklesias as “some members of the church,” or something similar (PEB, CEV, GW, GNT, Moffatt). Even a good brother’s translation goes this route. All the editions I consulted by Catholic publishers in Brazil have “members of the church.” NLT misses completely the sense of the phrase with “some believers in the church.” Continue reading “There are no members of the church”
In the beginning, he had spoken the truth that the gospel was for all. It seems, however, that the implications of this truth had not yet become clear to him. He was slow to understand what he ought to do.
Now may I ask why you sent for me?
Acts 10:29 NET
Now that the moment had arrived to put into practice the gospel for all nations, the Lord has to send him a vision, speak to him by means of a voice from heaven, and make him hear from his host how the Lord had given instructions to bring him here. Finally, he gets it: Continue reading “He finally gets it”
Stephen’s discourse is framed by the repeated use of a single term. Before his sermon to the Sanhedrin, Luke informs us that the Jews “looked intently” at Stephen, that his face was like that of an angel (see yesterday’s devotional). And after the sermon, it’s the preacher’s turn: Continue reading “The last thing he ever saw”
None of us has ever seen an angel. The stories about angels today are nothing like those of the Bible. Nor do the supposed angels have anything to do with the true ones. Scripture contains no sweet, little angels.
All who were sitting in the council looked intently at Stephen and saw his face was like the face of an angel.
Acts 6.15 NET
We immediately think that Steven must have shown a sweet, meek, beautiful, illuminated face. How wrong that thought would be! Continue reading “The face of an angel”
“Let your words be few,” wrote the Preacher (Ecclesiastes 5.2), and how right he was to give this counsel! How much better the world would be if people talked less, if they stopped throwing words to the wind. With one exception:
With many other words he testified and exhorted them saying, “Save yourselves from this perverse generation!”
Acts 2.41 NET
When it comes to the gospel, we ought to talk a lot. Peter preached about Jesus, and people were touched with their need to obey God’s will. Continue reading “Let your words be many”
Charts and graphs explain a lot in little space. Here’s one for you: