Stephen's Speech

And the high priest said, “Are these things so?” And Stephen said:

(A)“Brothers and fathers, hear me. (B)The God (C)of glory appeared to our father Abraham when he was in Mesopotamia, (D)before he lived in Haran, and said to him, (E)‘Go out from your land and from your kindred and go into the land that I will show you.’ (F)Then he went out from the land of the Chaldeans and lived in Haran. And (G)after his father died, (H)God removed him from there into this land in which you are now living. Yet he gave him no inheritance in it, not even a foot's length, but promised (I)to give it to him as a possession and to his offspring after him, (J)though he had no child. And God spoke to this effect—that (K)his offspring would (L)be sojourners in a land belonging to others, who would enslave them and afflict them (M)four hundred years. ‘But (N)I will judge the nation that they serve,’ said God, ‘and after that they shall come out (O)and worship me in this place.’ And (P)he gave him the covenant of circumcision. And (Q)so Abraham became the father of Isaac, and (R)circumcised him on the eighth day, and (S)Isaac became the father of Jacob, and (T)Jacob of the twelve patriarchs.

“And the patriarchs, (U)jealous of Joseph, (V)sold him into Egypt; but (W)God was with him 10 and rescued him out of all his afflictions and (X)gave him favor and wisdom before Pharaoh, king of Egypt, (Y)who made him ruler over Egypt and over all his household. 11 Now (Z)there came a famine throughout all Egypt and Canaan, and great affliction, and our fathers could find no food. 12 (AA)But when Jacob heard that there was grain in Egypt, he sent out our fathers on their first visit. 13 And (AB)on the second visit (AC)Joseph made himself known to his brothers, and (AD)Joseph's family became known to Pharaoh. 14 And (AE)Joseph sent and summoned Jacob his father and all his kindred, (AF)seventy-five persons in all. 15 And (AG)Jacob went down into Egypt, and (AH)he died, he (AI)and our fathers, 16 and (AJ)they were carried back to Shechem and laid in the tomb that (AK)Abraham had bought for a sum of silver from the sons of Hamor in Shechem.

17 “But (AL)as the time of the promise drew near, which God had granted to Abraham, (AM)the people increased and multiplied in Egypt 18 until there arose over Egypt another king (AN)who did not know Joseph. 19 (AO)He dealt shrewdly with our race and forced our fathers to expose their infants, (AP)so that they would not be kept alive. 20 (AQ)At this time Moses was born; and he was beautiful in God's sight. And he was brought up for three months in his father's house, 21 and (AR)when he was exposed, Pharaoh's daughter adopted him and brought him up as her own son. 22 And Moses (AS)was instructed in (AT)all the wisdom of the Egyptians, and he was (AU)mighty in his words and deeds.

23 “When he was forty years old, it came into his heart (AV)to visit his brothers, the children of Israel. 24 And seeing one of them being wronged, he defended the oppressed man and avenged him by striking down the Egyptian. 25 He supposed that his brothers would understand that God was giving them salvation by his hand, but they did not understand. 26 (AW)And on the following day he appeared to them as they were quarreling and tried to reconcile them, saying, ‘Men, you are brothers. Why do you wrong each other?’ 27 But the man who was wronging his neighbor thrust him aside, saying, (AX)‘Who made you a ruler and a judge over us? 28 Do you want to kill me as you killed the Egyptian yesterday?’ 29 At this retort (AY)Moses fled and became an exile in the land of Midian, (AZ)where he became the father of two sons.

30 “Now when forty years had passed, (BA)an angel appeared to him (BB)in the wilderness of Mount Sinai, in a flame of fire in a bush. 31 When Moses saw it, he was amazed at the sight, and as he drew near to look, there came the voice of the Lord: 32 (BC)‘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. 33 Then the Lord said to him, (BD)‘Take off the sandals from your feet, for the place where you are standing is holy ground. 34 (BE)I have surely seen the affliction of my people who are in Egypt, and (BF)have heard their groaning, and (BG)I have come down to deliver them. (BH)And now come, I will send you to Egypt.’

35 “This Moses, whom they rejected, (BI)saying, ‘Who made you a ruler and a judge?’—this man God sent as both ruler and redeemer (BJ)by the hand of the angel who appeared to him in the bush. 36 (BK)This man led them out, performing (BL)wonders and signs (BM)in Egypt and (BN)at the Red Sea and (BO)in the wilderness for (BP)forty years. 37 This is the Moses who said to the Israelites, ‘God will raise up for you (BQ)a prophet like me from your brothers.’ 38 This is the one (BR)who was in the congregation in the wilderness with (BS)the angel who spoke to him at Mount Sinai, and with our fathers. (BT)He received (BU)living (BV)oracles to give to us. 39 Our fathers refused to obey him, but thrust him aside, and (BW)in their hearts they turned to Egypt, 40 saying to Aaron, (BX)‘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.’ 41 And (BY)they made a calf in those days, and offered a sacrifice to the idol and (BZ)were rejoicing in (CA)the works of their hands. 42 But (CB)God turned away and (CC)gave them over to worship (CD)the host of heaven, as it is written in the book of the prophets:

(CE)“‘Did you bring to me slain beasts and sacrifices,
    (CF)during the forty years in the wilderness, O house of Israel?
43 You took up the tent of (CG)Moloch
    and the star of your god Rephan,
    the images that you made to worship;
and I will send you into exile beyond Babylon.’

44 “Our fathers had (CH)the tent of witness in the wilderness, just as he who spoke to Moses (CI)directed him to make it, according to the pattern that he had seen. 45 Our fathers in turn (CJ)brought it in with Joshua when they (CK)dispossessed the nations (CL)that God drove out before our fathers. So it was (CM)until the days of David, 46 (CN)who found favor in the sight of God and (CO)asked to find a dwelling place for (CP)the God of Jacob.[a] 47 But it was (CQ)Solomon who built a house for him. 48 (CR)Yet the Most High does not dwell (CS)in houses made by hands, as the prophet says,

49 (CT)“‘Heaven is my throne,
    (CU)and the earth is my footstool.
What kind of house will you build for me, says the Lord,
    or what is the place of my rest?
50 Did not my hand make all these things?’

51 (CV)“You stiff-necked people, (CW)uncircumcised in heart and ears, you always resist the Holy Spirit. (CX)As your fathers did, so do you. 52 (CY)Which of the prophets did your fathers not persecute? And they killed those who announced beforehand the coming of (CZ)the Righteous One, (DA)whom you have now betrayed and murdered, 53 you who received the law (DB)as delivered by angels and (DC)did not keep it.”

The Stoning of Stephen

54 Now when they heard these things (DD)they were enraged, and they (DE)ground their teeth at him. 55 But he, (DF)full of the Holy Spirit, gazed into heaven and saw (DG)the glory of God, and Jesus standing (DH)at the right hand of God. 56 And he said, “Behold, I see (DI)the heavens opened, and (DJ)the Son of Man standing (DK)at the right hand of God.” 57 But they cried out with a loud voice and stopped their ears and rushed together[b] at him. 58 Then (DL)they cast him out of the city and (DM)stoned him. And (DN)the witnesses laid down their garments (DO)at the feet of a young man named Saul. 59 And as they were stoning Stephen, (DP)he called out, “Lord Jesus, (DQ)receive my spirit.” 60 And (DR)falling to his knees he cried out with a loud voice, (DS)“Lord, do not hold this sin against them.” And when he had said this, (DT)he fell asleep.

Saul Ravages the Church

And (DU)Saul (DV)approved of his execution.

And there arose on that day a great persecution against the church in Jerusalem, and (DW)they were all scattered throughout the regions of Judea and Samaria, except the apostles. Devout men buried Stephen and made great lamentation over him. But (DX)Saul was ravaging the church, and entering house after house, he (DY)dragged off men and women and committed them to prison.

Philip Proclaims Christ in Samaria

Now (DZ)those who were scattered went about preaching the word. (EA)Philip went down to the city[c] of Samaria and proclaimed to them the Christ. (EB)And the crowds with one accord paid attention to what was being said by Philip, when they heard him (EC)and saw the signs that he did. For (ED)unclean spirits, crying out with a loud voice, came out of many who had them, and many who were paralyzed or lame were healed. So (EE)there was much joy in that city.

Simon the Magician Believes

But there was a man named Simon, (EF)who had previously practiced magic in the city and amazed the people of Samaria, (EG)saying that he himself was somebody great. 10 They all paid attention to him, from the least to the greatest, saying, (EH)“This man is the power of God that is called (EI)Great.” 11 And they paid attention to him because for a long time he had (EJ)amazed them with his magic. 12 But when (EK)they believed Philip as he preached good news (EL)about the kingdom of God and the name of Jesus Christ, (EM)they were baptized, both men and women. 13 Even Simon himself believed, and after being baptized he continued with Philip. And (EN)seeing signs and (EO)great miracles[d] performed, (EP)he was amazed.

14 Now when (EQ)the apostles at Jerusalem heard that (ER)Samaria had received the word of God, they sent to them Peter and John, 15 who came down and prayed for them (ES)that they might receive the Holy Spirit, 16 for (ET)he had not yet (EU)fallen on any of them, but (EV)they had only been baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. 17 Then (EW)they laid their hands on them and (EX)they received the Holy Spirit. 18 Now when Simon saw that the Spirit was given through the laying on of the apostles' hands, he offered them money, 19 saying, “Give me this power also, so that anyone on whom I lay my hands may receive the Holy Spirit.” 20 But Peter said to him, (EY)“May your silver perish with you, because you thought you could obtain the gift of God (EZ)with money! 21 You have neither part nor lot in this matter, for (FA)your heart is not right before God. 22 Repent, therefore, of this wickedness of yours, and pray to the Lord that, (FB)if possible, the intent of your heart may be forgiven you. 23 For I see that you are in (FC)the gall[e] of bitterness and in (FD)the bond of iniquity.” 24 And Simon answered, (FE)“Pray for me to the Lord, that nothing of what you have said may come upon me.”

25 Now when they had testified and spoken the word of the Lord, they returned to Jerusalem, (FF)preaching the gospel to many villages of the Samaritans.

Philip and the Ethiopian Eunuch

26 Now (FG)an angel of the Lord said to Philip, “Rise and go toward the south[f] to the road that goes down from Jerusalem to Gaza.” This is a desert place. 27 And he rose and went. And there was an (FH)Ethiopian, a (FI)eunuch, a court official of Candace, queen of the Ethiopians, (FJ)who was in charge of all her treasure. (FK)He had come to Jerusalem to worship 28 and was returning, seated in his chariot, and he was reading the prophet Isaiah. 29 And the Spirit said to Philip, “Go over and join this chariot.” 30 So Philip ran to him and heard him reading Isaiah the prophet and asked, “Do you understand what you are reading?” 31 And he said, (FL)“How can I, unless someone (FM)guides me?” And (FN)he invited Philip to come up and sit with him. 32 Now the passage of the Scripture that he was reading was this:

(FO)“Like a sheep he was led to the slaughter
    and like a lamb before its shearer is silent,
    so he opens not his mouth.
33 In his (FP)humiliation justice was denied him.
    Who can describe his generation?
For his life is taken away from the earth.”

34 And the eunuch said to Philip, “About whom, I ask you, does the prophet say this, about himself or about someone else?” 35 Then Philip opened his mouth, and (FQ)beginning with this Scripture (FR)he told him the good news about Jesus. 36 And as they were going along the road they came to some water, and the eunuch said, “See, here is water! (FS)What prevents me from being baptized?”[g] 38 And he commanded the chariot to stop, and they both went down into the water, Philip and the eunuch, and he baptized him. 39 And when they came up out of the water, (FT)the Spirit of the Lord (FU)carried Philip away, and the eunuch saw him no more, and went on his way rejoicing. 40 But Philip found himself at Azotus, and as he passed through he preached the gospel to all the towns until he came to Caesarea.

Footnotes

  1. Acts 7:46 Some manuscripts for the house of Jacob
  2. Acts 7:57 Or rushed with one mind
  3. Acts 8:5 Some manuscripts a city
  4. Acts 8:13 Greek works of power
  5. Acts 8:23 That is, a bitter fluid secreted by the liver; bile
  6. Acts 8:26 Or go at about noon
  7. Acts 8:36 Some manuscripts add all or most of verse 37: And Philip said, “If you believe with all your heart, you may.” And he replied, “I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.”

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