Acts 7:30-43 (ESV)
“Now when forty years had passed, an angel appeared to him in the wilderness of Mount Sinai, in a flame of fire in a bush. When Moses saw it, he was amazed at the sight, and as he drew near to look, there came the voice of the Lord: ‘I am the God of your fathers, the God of Abraham and of Isaac and of Jacob.’ And Moses trembled and did not dare to look. Then the Lord said to him, ‘Take off the sandals from your feet, for the place where you are standing is holy ground. I have surely seen the affliction of my people who are in Egypt, and have heard their groaning, and I have come down to deliver them. And now come, I will send you to Egypt.’
“This Moses, whom they rejected, saying, ‘Who made you a ruler and a judge?’—this man God sent as both ruler and redeemer by the hand of the angel who appeared to him in the bush. This man led them out, performing wonders and signs in Egypt and at the Red Sea and in the wilderness for forty years. This is the Moses who said to the Israelites, ‘God will raise up for you a prophet like me from your brothers.’ This is the one who was in the congregation in the wilderness with the angel who spoke to him at Mount Sinai, and with our fathers. He received living oracles to give to us. Our fathers refused to obey him, but thrust him aside, and in their hearts they turned to Egypt, saying to Aaron, ‘Make for us gods who will go before us. As for this Moses who led us out from the land of Egypt, we do not know what has become of him.’ And they made a calf in those days, and offered a sacrifice to the idol and were rejoicing in the works of their hands. But God turned away and gave them over to worship the host of heaven, as it is written in the book of the prophets:
“‘Did you bring to me slain beasts and sacrifices, during the forty years in the wilderness, O house of Israel? You took up the tent of Moloch and the star of your god Rephan, the images that you made to worship; and I will send you into exile beyond Babylon.’”
Stephen emphasizes that Moses was chosen by God, not by the Israelites. He then led them out, performing wonders and signs in Egypt and at the Red Sea and in the wilderness for forty years.
Steven then hits the council with the main clue-bat of the whole sermon. “This is the Moses who said to the Israelites, ‘God will raise up for you a prophet like me from your brothers.’”
Remember, part of the charge against Stephen was that he claimed Jesus will change the customs that Moses delivered to us. Stephen shows that this is exactly what Moses prophesied. (Note: for a prophet to be “like” Moses, he would have to be a law giver, not just a law obeyer like all the other prophets.)
This proves, from scripture, that they’re actually accusing Jesus of being the messiah.
Let’s lift up the law givers in our government. Politics has gotten pretty rough lately and they could use a little divine intervention. Pray for all our leaders, local and national, liberal and conservative. Ask the Lord to bless them and their families.
Ask Him to inspire them to listen to one another and show some comity.
The weekly study guides, which include discussion questions, are available for download here: