Today’s scripture: Acts 6:8-15 (NRSV) (The Message)

As you read, consider: What might God be saying to me? Summarize your thoughts in a sentence or two.

My thoughts (Steve Adams):

What a man of faith Stephen was! He was not only one of the leaders who coordinated the daily distribution of food; he was also ministering to people by doing signs and wonders among them. It seems that, when it came to serving God, he made time for everything!

But then came the accusations (vs.12-14). Now, when you’re accused of something you really didn’t do, it’s a very hard place to be in, isn’t it? How could one human being betray another by maligning them in such a way?

Revelation 12 speaks of a day when there will be no more false charges “…for the accuser of our comrades has been thrown down, who accuses them day and night . . . they have conquered him by the blood of the Lamb . . .” This section of scripture goes on to reveal that it is the devil who is this malicious accuser.

Our Parent God and our Lord Jesus Christ would NEVER be the author of slander, because they love us so much — and they always tell the truth, don’t they? Instead, it’s evil spiritual forces spoken of in Ephesians 6:12 that initiate bogus accusations, by persuading people to believe a lie. And, as Jesus said in John 8:44, it is the devil who is the father of lies.

But, thank God we can continue on the path God wants us to walk on, even if we are accused of something that’s not true. Oh, that we can be like Stephen! After hearing false charges by false witnesses before the council that was to decide his fate, Stephen’s face appeared like that of an angel! Imagine being able to have that kind of faith and peace in the middle of such an apparently helpless situation. Stephen realized he never had to be helpless and hopeless as long as his Lord Jesus Christ was with him!

Prayer for the day: Lord, help me focus on you when I’m wrongly accused, knowing that your love trumps every false accusation!

We encourage you to include a time of prayer with this reading. If you need a place to get started, consider the guidelines on the How to Pray page.