Day 9

Evidence of the Spirit’s Work

from the reading plan

Acts 6:1-15, Genesis 4:3-7, 1 Timothy 3:8-13, Exodus 34:29-30

I naturally think like a dualist. In my mind, I effortlessly partition off the spiritual things from the practical day-to-day busyness of life. The here and now, the schedules, and the tasks can easily overwhelm my day, crowding out my seemingly less urgent but vitally important spiritual life.

Today’s Scripture describes an intensely practical and urgent matter: the Hellenist widows were being neglected. The dualist in me sees this as an administrative task, needing a real nuts and bolts solution. Surely, the next best step is to look over the resumes and pick the most qualified people to deal with the issue.

But the apostles carefully unfold the criteria: they seek men “of good repute, full of the Spirit and of wisdom” (Acts 6:3). The spiritual health of these men was their first concern. The apostles certainly didn’t overlook natural gifting and skill; we see very clearly that they differentiated between their own calling to serve in preaching and the calling of these men to serve with their hands. But there is no dividing line between the practical things and the spiritual things.

One of these men, Stephen, a man of very practical gifting, proved to be one of the most potent witnesses in the early church. His opposers “could not withstand the wisdom and the Spirit with which he was speaking” (Acts 6:10). What was the root of his powerful witness? It was not his earthly talents, his intellect, or his cunning. Indeed, we find in this passage echoes of Acts 4:13, where Peter and John, ordinary and unschooled men, nonetheless spoke with power and conviction. The Jewish rulers, we are told, “took note that these men had been with Jesus.” So also, Stephen’s witness was born of his walk with Christ.

Too often, we neglect the weightier matters. We operate by an earthly wisdom, being sure to tidy our workspaces, balance our checkbooks, and organize our tools, long before we get on our knees, open our Bibles, and sit at the feet of Christ. Is it any wonder that our countenance falls? (Gen. 4:6)

The first and most urgent matters are those of the heart. When our hearts are filled with the Spirit, we are then prepared for even the most practical matters.

The content of our hearts shows up in our hands, on our faces, and in our words. Though for a while men may pretend and even deceive many, what is inside always comes out. When Stephen faced his accusers, he did not wilt at their accusations. Rather, the whole assembly could see that his face shone brightly.

May we walk with Christ and be filled with His Spirit, and may His light shine in us, that we may be faithful serve with “great confidence in the faith that is in Christ Jesus” (1 Tim. 3:13).

Written By Caleb Faires

Post Comments (21)

21 thoughts on "Evidence of the Spirit’s Work"

  1. Marc says:

    The Apostles knew their role in the Kingdom. Their spiritual and earthly job was to preach the Good News. They knew if their job was derailed by the widows they would miss their calling. If we saw the Gospel as they saw the Gospel, we would set apart the time to study, and pray daily.

  2. Marc says:

    We are in His Kjngdom to do s job. Though we may have a job that pays the bills, our primary job is to prepare our hearts and minds so that we can be His disciples first. Our first job in life is to be His servant.

  3. JonSeth sammons says:

    BUT Jesus’s ultimate offering on Calvary was enough.

  4. JonSeth sammons says:

    Like Cain my offering is not enough.

  5. JonSeth sammons says:

    In the Acts passage it taught me that God calls people to certain tasks, that i can’t do it all by myself. God is a God of equipping us with a purpose.

  6. JonSeth sammons says:

    Pray and Dedicate my whole existent to the reading of Gods word.

  7. Matthew Wieters says:

    Pray for God to give me a heart focused more on others and less on myself. For God to help me be a compassionate friend to my friends that are hurting

  8. Matthew Wieters says:

    I will work on my spiritual health and work to have a steady relationship with God by meeting with him regularly

  9. Isaac Jones says:

    God gives gifts of wisdom. He makes us ready to defend the faith, and by His power we can serve the needs of others.

  10. Isaac Jones says:

    Man can find identity and acceptance from God. Man need the redemption of Christ for the righteousness of God.

  11. Isaac Jones says:

    I will respond by looking at my practical life and seeing how I can spiritually honor and worship God while doing work or even relaxing.

  12. Isaac Jones says:

    The gospel is not just spiritual, it is practical too.

  13. Isaac Jones says:

    Heavenly Father,
    Teach me to worship with my whole heart and my whole mind. Show me what it means to find rest in you daily. In your name I pray; amen.

  14. Enoch says:

    Prioritize correctly. Relying on my own skills and education will not replace the need for God. Ever.

  15. Enoch says:

    Lord, do not allow me to take one more breath without acknowledging my need for you at work and at home. May you use me in ordinary things to bring glory to yourself.

  16. Aidan Corona says:

    You cannot truly encounter God and not be affected by Him.

  17. Aidan Corona says:

    We should not have a separate “spiritual life,” but should let the Spirit direct us in every area of our lives.

  18. Aidan Corona says:

    The Gospel is life altering and something you must completely commit to.

  19. Aidan Corona says:

    I need to refocus my priorities and let the spirit fill me and lead me in all that I do instead of letting it lead me sometimes or just at church or whenever I want to feel more spiritual.

  20. Aidan Corona says:

    Holy Spirit, come over me and fill me. Lead me to where I can be of the most service to you and use me in peoples lives to advance the kingdom. Speak through me constantly. Don’t let me try and proportion my life and only give you part of it.

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