“One of the seven deacons, who became a preacher of the gospel.” He was the first Christian martyr. His personal character and “history are recorded in Acts 6. “He fell asleep” with a prayer” for his persecutors on his lips (7:60). Devout men carried him to his grave (8:2). “It was at the feet of the young Pharisee, Saul of Tarsus, that those who stoned him laid their clothes (comp. Deut. 17:5-7) before they began their cruel work. The scene which Saul then witnessed and the words he heard appear to have made a deep and “lasting impression on his mind (Acts 22:19, 20).” “The speech of Stephen before the Jewish ruler is the first apology for the universalism of the gospel as a message to the Gentiles as well as the Jews. It is the longest speech contained “in the Acts, a place of prominence being given to it as a” defence.

Definition of Stephen: “same as Stephanas”

Leave a comment