Saul was one of the witnesses, and he agreed completely with the killing of Stephen.
A great wave of persecution began that day, sweeping over the church in Jerusalem; and all the believers except the apostles were scattered through the regions of Judea and Samaria. (Some devout men came and buried Stephen with great mourning.) But Saul was going everywhere to destroy the church. He went from house to house, dragging out both men and women to throw them into prison.
But the believers who were scattered preached the Good News about Jesus wherever they went.
— Acts 8:1-4 NLT
These early believers humble me with their love, solidarity, and commitment. As I read about our persecuted brothers and sisters today, I fear that those of us in more economically and religiously privileged countries have forgotten our suffering brothers and sisters in other places. Take some time to learn about ways to help our persecuted brothers and sisters throughout the world
. Consider helping support a child to grow up knowing Jesus, having food, and receiving an education through Compassion International
or Rwanda Children
. In the face of the savagery in the world, we are still called to be salt and light in a world of decay and darkness (Matthew 5:13-16). If we stay together, the world can come to know Jesus because of our love for each other! (John 13:34-35)
Father, thank you for the example these early disciples are for us today. Thank you for their solidarity with one another and their commitment to the cause of Christ. During our day, we want to stand together and share the love of Jesus with a broken world. We ask for your power to be poured out on us mightily in our day so we will be your servants to the world. In Jesus' name, I pray. Amen.