S. O. A. P.
Here’s Your 90 second AM Devotional!
Meanwhile, the witnesses laid their coats at the feet of a young man named Saul.
In this great chapter from the book of Acts, the deacon named Stephen had been accused of what the Jewish leaders believed were theological blasphemies. They asked this “Follower Of Jesus” to give an account for what he had been accused of. He answered with what many have said is the most historically concise message of the gospel ever. Whereupon they stone him to death. As they stoned him, a young Jewish religious leader named Saul kept watch over the garments of the men who killed Stephen.
Saul of course later became Paul, the Great Apostle. I can’t imagine what Paul must have thought having been at the execution of Stephen and being on the side of those who killed him. After Paul was miraculously changed by Jesus, he became part of the first missionary tandem in history. It began an organic flourishing of the gospel that has now grown to over two billion adherents worldwide. But in the heat of his Christian service, if you read Acts 22:20 you will see that Paul deeply regretted being a part of Stephen’s death. The power of this story is simply this: “Thank God People Change!” If St. Paul can go from being a hater and persecutor and destroyer of Christians to being the key voice of early Christianity after his encounter with Jesus, there’s hope for any and all of our friends and associates who may be outside of the fold today. Whatever you do, don’t give up on your friend. “Thank God People Change.”
As I read this passage this AM, I thought of people who so desperately need to know You as Savior. I will never give up on them and will endeavor to let my light shine until they respond to You. I’m so glad that people can change. Amen