On trial in God’s courtroom

“They put forward false witnesses who said, ‘This man incessantly speaks against this holy place and the Law; for we have heard him say that this Nazarene, Jesus, will destroy this place and alter the customs which Moses handed down to us'” (Acts 6:13-14).

These accusations against Stephen are the key that unlocks the book of Acts! These same accusations will be leveled against Paul again and again throughout the book (Acts 21:21, 28; 25:8, 16; 26:3; 28:17), and Acts ends with Paul waiting to stand trial for these alleged offenses (Acts 28:17, 19). The book of Acts, among other things, was written to prove these accusations are completely false! One of the pillars of the apostolic faith is that Jesus came to fulfill, not to abolish, the law (Matt 5:17-19), and almost all of the sermons in Acts bear witness to the fact that the early believers in Yeshua really believed this. In practically all of their sermons, they are preaching Moses (Acts 3:22; 7:20, 22, 29; 13:38; 26:22; 28:23). Perhaps the book ends with Paul still waiting for his trial because till this very day we still stand in Paul's shoes: this accusation has never been put to rest. Like Jesus, Stephen, and Paul, we are also accused of speaking against Moses. But like Jesus, Stephen, and Paul, we must insist: when it comes to faith in Jesus, Moses is our greatest defense!

“I stand to this day testifying both to small and great, stating nothing but what the Prophets and Moses said was going to take place; that the Christ was to suffer, and that by reason of His resurrection from the dead He would be the first to proclaim light both to the Jewish people and to the Gentiles” (Acts 26:22-23).

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