Monday, March 25, 2013

a whole new way of suffering

Yesterday's sermon notes come from Pastor Gregg Matte's message.
He spoke about the similarities between Christ and Stephen.
Here's a little background on Stephen:
He was a jew and was chosen by the disciples to be one of the seven deacons.
He was very faithful and was one of the first martyrs of the Christian faith.
Acts 7:54-60 tells us of the martyrdom/stoning of Stephen.
54 Now when they heard this, they were cut to the quick, and they began gnashing their teeth at him. 55 But being full of the Holy Spirit, he gazed intently into heaven and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing at the right hand of God; 56 and he said, “Behold, I see the heavens opened up and the Son of Man standing at the right hand of God.” 57 But they cried out with a loud voice, and covered their ears and rushed at him with one impulse. 58 When they had driven him out of the city, they began stoning him; and the witnesses laid aside their robes at the feet of a young man named Saul. 59 They went on stoning Stephen as he called on the Lord and said, “Lord Jesus, receive my spirit!” 60 Then falling on his knees, he cried out with a loud voice, “Lord, do not hold this sin against them!” Having said this, he fell asleep.
If you know about the death of Jesus Christ, does anything sound familiar?
-As Jesus hung on the cross, He looked up into Heaven.
-Jesus was full of the Holy Spirit.
-Jesus called on God, giving Him his life.
-Jesus forgave the ones who crucified right before he died. 
So what can we learn from this? Why was Stephen's death so much like Jesus'?
Maybe it is to show us that we can be Christ-like during suffering. That's what God wants from us and here's how...
"Trust the truth when others lie."
"Be Christ like in times of sacrifice."
"Look to heaven in prayer." verse 55
"The crowd usually gets it wrong." verse 57
"Place eternity in God's hands." verse 59
"Forgive." verse 60
"Your trials bring others to trust." Influenced Saul/Paul's transformation and conversion because of Stephen's Christ-like death.
"Godly sacrifice brings heavenly celebration."
When we are Christ-like in our suffering, people notice and are affected in a positive way.
Bible reading plan:
Today - Deuteronomy 5-7
Tuesday - Deut 8-10
Wednesday - Deut 11-13
Thursday- Deut 14-16
Friday - Deut 17-20
Saturday - Deut 21-23
Don't forget to pray for the unreached people groups today!
Learn more here
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  1. Hi Chelsea, just came across your blog. What an excellent post. I particularly focused on this:

    "When we are Christ-like in our suffering, people notice and are affected in a positive way."

    This sentence is like a light at the end of the tunnel. Nobody likes nor wants to suffer, but it's a part of life. If we remember to stay focused on Christ and to stay positive & Christ-like when we do suffer, it not only is inspiring to those watching us, but I think it will help us walk through those times ourselves.

    Thank you for the reminder and the encouragement along the way. I really love your blog title, too!


    1. Aw thanks Pam! I'm so glad you stopped by! You are so right- life isn't supposed to be easy, but God can use our hardships for His glory!

      Thanks again for your sweet comments :)
      Many blessings!


I'm so glad you stopped by! I can't wait to hear your thoughts. Be blessed :)