This week we got back to where we had left off with the “peroratio” (i.e., conclusion) of Stephen’s speech in Acts 7. It’s at this point the reason for his rehashing the history of Israel becomes crystal clear: Stephen has been building a case not merely to proclaim his innocence, but also to prove the guilt of those who crucified Jesus!
With great passion, Stephen flips the trial on its head when he leverages striking, specific, and harsh indictments against his audience using phrases such as “stiff-necked” and “uncircumcised in heart and ears” and “always refusing the Holy Spirit.”
The response of the hearers was visceral resulting in gnashing of teeth. When he shared his vision, they refused to listen any longer and took the law into their own hands. (More on this next week!)
Scroll down for some extra resources to help you do your own research.
>> Click to read this week’s passages in KJV, CSB, ESV, NIV: Acts 7:45-50 <<
Acts 7:51-56 ~ Who’s Really on Trial Here?
Stephen concludes his “defense” speech in front of the Sanhedrin
* Recorded: LIVE. This audio has been edited for class member privacy, time, and content.
There was no PowerPoint this week.
- “Bronze Bull Found in Israelite ‘High Place’ from the Time of the Judges” by Amihai Mazar (Biblical Archaeology Review 9:5, September/October 1983)
* Please note: Links to these articles do not equate to endorsement of the author’s theology or point of view. These links are provided as supplemental resources and should be read in conjunction with the Scripture as well as published commentaries on Acts.