I.  A Division of Labor (vs. 1-7)

a. What was the nature of the first conflict in the early church?

b. What was the solution?

c. What were the qualifications for this role?

d. What do the phrases “it is not desirable that we should leave the word of God and serve tables” and “but we will give ourselves continually to prayer and the ministry of the word” say about the primacy of teaching / preaching for those called to it?

e. What was the effect of these additional men faithfully serving the church?

II. Stephen Set Upon (vs. 8-15)

a. How was Stephen’s ministry characterized in verse 8?

b. Who disputed with Stephen and what do you think was really at the heart of their dissention?

c. How effective was Stephen in answering them?

d. When they could not refute his wisdom and the Spirit by which he spoke what was their next course of action?

e. When one cannot refute the wisdom of the word of God or the Holy Spirit what SHOULD be the next course of action?

f. Were these men honorable before God or was this a case of evil opposing good?

g. This marks a rising of the persecution against the church.  How does the goodness of God and His sovereignty use even the evil intentions of the lost to carry out His perfect plan and execute His will…without the lost even knowing their actions further the cause of the Gospel?

III. Application:  As Christians the roles we are called to may vary but the need that each of us have a good reputation, be full of the Holy Spirit, and be men of faith is vital.  What happens when we are each obedient in our calling and work together cooperatively?

  August 2018  
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