“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.’ And fixing their gaze on him, all who were sitting in the Council saw his face like the face of an angel” (Acts 6:13-15).

At the very moment Stephen was being accused of speaking against Moses (see Acts 6:11), he looked incredibly like Moses, both of whom are the only people in the Bible whose faces shined with the glory of God (see Exod 34:29-35). More irony surfaces when we realize Luke’s description of Stephen doing “great wonders and signs” makes him incredibly like Moses (see Exod 4:21; 7:3, 9; 11:9-10; Deut 34:10-12; Acts 7:36). Luke also draws a direct parallel between Stephen’s “wisdom” before the hostile assembly and Moses’ wisdom before a defiant Pharaoh (Acts 6:10; 7:22). Stephen, contrary to the accusations against him, emulated the beauty of a Jewish man who, by meditating on the Torah day and night (Josh 1:8; Psa 1:2), had not only come to reflect Moses’ persona, but had also come to truly believe in Moses’ testimony (Deut 18:15; see Acts 26:22; 28:23! Stephen is pictured here as a person who had spent a lifetime reading Moses, and was now seeing Jesus!

“But being full of the Holy Spirit, he gazed intently into heaven and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing at the right hand of God” (Acts 7:55).

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