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Thursday, March 14, 2013

Persecution Arises


Acts 7:57-58 NIV

57At this they covered their ears and, yelling at the top of their voices, they all rushed at him, 58dragged him out of the city and began to stone him. Meanwhile, the witnesses laid their coats at the feet of a young man named Saul.

Acts 8:1-3 NIV

1And Saul approved of their killing him.

The Church Persecuted and Scattered

On that day a great persecution broke out against the church in Jerusalem, and all except the apostles were scattered throughout Judea and Samaria. 2Godly men buried Stephen and mourned deeply for him. 3But Saul began to destroy the church. Going from house to house, he dragged off both men and women and put them in prison.

Philip in Samaria

4Those who had been scattered preached the word wherever they went. 5Philip went down to a city in Samaria and proclaimed the Messiah there. 6When the crowds heard Philip and saw the signs he performed, they all paid close attention to what he said. 7For with shrieks, impure spirits came out of many, and many who were paralyzed or lame were healed. 8So there was great joy in that city.


Who was this Saul?

This Saul who was in charge of the persecutors when stoning Stephen was none other than Paul the Apostle.

Acts 20:20 NIV

"And when the blood of your martyr Stephen was shed, I stood there giving my approval and guarding the clothes of those who were killing him."


Acts 8:1-3

Immediately following the death of Stephen, the persecution arose on account of Stephen.


“Now those who had been scattered by the persecution that broke out when Stephen was killed traveled as far as Phoenicia, Cyprus and Antioch, spreading the word only among Jews.

The tumult did not subside when Stephen was killed. The anger of his persecutors continued to be excited against all Christians. They had become so embittered by the zeal and success of the apostles, and by their frequent charges of murder in putting the Son of God to death.

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