We read about conflicts every day. Hatred between groups results in senseless killing. What kinds of issues raise feelings to such a level that killing others seems like a reasonable alternative? Jesus told his followers that if they wanted to come with him, “he must forget himself, take up his cross every day, and follow me. For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever wants to love his life will save it.”
- Synagogue – building where Jews met for worship and religious education
- Moses – greatest leader of the Jewish people in the Old Testament
- Council – the group of Jewish leaders who tried Jesus and condemned him to death
- Temple – center of Jewish religious ritual and worship in Jerusalem
- Stoned – being killed by rocks thrown at you
- What were the characters of Stephen’s life?
- Who opposed Stephen? How? Why did they lose their arguments?
- When they failed in their arguments, what did they do? What did they accuse him of?
- What threat do you think these men felt from the believers of Jesus?
- How had God worked through Moses? What did the people following Moses have a history of doing? Who did Moses say God would send in the future?
- Can the worship of God be confined to a building? Why or why not? Where is God?
- What does Stephen say about his accusers and listeners? How have their ancestors opposed God’s will?
- Who is the righteous servant that Stephen says they betrayed?
- How does the council react to Stephen’s accusations? Why are they angry?
- How does Stephen resist their hatred? Why don’t you think he responded with more hatred? Whose example is he following?