Stephen and the New Deal

Article by Staff

Over the centuries, God has been disappointed by mankind over and over again. One man who did not disappoint was the deacon Stephen. Find out why he was so special.


Faithful Stephen

Sermon by Martin G. Collins

Martin Collins, reflecting on an administrative decision about care of the widows in the early Church (mentioned in Acts 6:1), suggests that dual languages and dual cultures (Greek and Hebrew) led to at a perceived "double standard" in the way welfare was distributed to Jewish and Hellenistic widows. The solution was …


Acts (Part 7)

Sermon/Bible Study by John W. Ritenbaugh

John Ritenbaugh initially focuses upon the execution of Ananias and Sapphira for their deceit and hypocrisy (an event parallel to Aachan's deceit and execution), pretending to have sacrificed more than they actually had. In this same account, Luke records the volatile confrontation of the Apostles (who had been instructed by an …


Acts (Part 10)

Sermon/Bible Study by John W. Ritenbaugh

John Ritenbaugh reiterates that the martyrdom of Stephen, largely instigated by Hellenistic Jews, actually had the paradoxical dramatic effect of spreading the Gospel into Gentile venues, enabling individuals like Cornelius and the Ethiopian Eunuch, upon repentance, belief, and baptism to be added to the fellowship. Even more …


God's Special Presence and Direct Intervention

Sermon by Martin G. Collins

Martin Collins, reflecting on the martyrdom of Stephen, affirms that his martyrdom indicated that this wholesale persecution on Christianity, from the leaders to the rank and file, indicated that Christianity was a revolutionary idea whose time had come. The institution feeling the greatest threat was Judaism, with the Pharisee …


Don't Give Up (2015)!

Sermon by Martin G. Collins

Martin Collins, asking us if we have ever wanted to give up from our deluge of trials, reminds us that our predecessors have had similar sentiments. The conversion of the apostle Paul, his subsequent training, and lengthy service was not a walk in the park. His education prior to his conversion was extensive, even including …


Acts (Part 9)

Sermon/Bible Study by John W. Ritenbaugh

John Ritenbaugh continues to reflect on Stephen's incendiary message to fellow Hellenistic Jews (ostensibly given in hopes of their repentance), chastising them for their perennial rejection of prophets and deliverers, including the greatest Deliverer ever sent (namely Jesus Christ), clinging instead superstitiously to the land, …


Why Hebrews Was Written (Part Three)

'Personal' from John W. Ritenbaugh

Hebrews was written to fulfill several needs of the first-century church. One of the most critical was to explain God's opening of eternal life to the Gentiles.


Acts (Part 8)

Sermon/Bible Study by John W. Ritenbaugh

John Ritenbaugh explains that Stephen ignited the ire of the Hellenistic Jews, a group passionately devoted to the temple, law and land as a defensive reaction to their historical scattering. Stephen rebukes them for their reactionary (almost superstitious) devotion to the past or reverence to a specific temple location, …


Our End Time

CGG Weekly by David C. Grabbe

We scour the prophecies for any overlooked clue that might guide us through these times of turmoil. Yet, the details we seek remain hidden—for good reason.


Hebrews: Its Background (Part Four)

Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

The frightful conditions during the 1st century are typical of the times ahead. To weather these circumstances, we need the encouragement of Hebrews.


Philip the Witness

Sermonette by Ted E. Bowling

Ted Bowling, recollecting a conversation with his late mother about the identity of Philip, the individual who ministered to the Ethiopian eunuch, affirmed that this same Philip was one of the first seven deacons chosen to serve the neglected Grecian widows, providing sorely needed administrative relief. These men were chosen …


The Book of Joel (Part Two)

Sermon by Martin G. Collins

Martin Collins, continuing the exposition of the Book of Joel, reiterates that the locust plague serves as a vivid precursor to the impending Day of the Lord. Joel assures the victims of the devastating plague that, if they would repent of their sins, returning to the covenant, the land would become refreshed, prosperity would …


Spiritual Renewal

Sermon by Martin G. Collins

Paul admonishes the Corinthians to resist contentions, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambition, backbiting, whispering, slander, conceit, and agitation.


Promised: Protection and Healing

Sermon by Richard T. Ritenbaugh

In this message on God's promises of protection and healing, Richard Ritenbaugh identifies several conditions for receiving them, including God's sovereignty, God's purpose, and one's level of growth. A way to see things "God's way" involves replacing our carnal, egocentric viewpoint with outgoing concern. We must …


God's Love and Teachings for His Children

Sermon by Kim Myers

God lovingly teaches His children, just as a perfect parent. As children cry out to their parents, so human nature drives God's people to complain to Him.


Ground Hog Day - Again?

Sermonette by Bill Onisick

Bill Onisick, reflecting on a theme in the 1993 movie Groundhog Day, in which a weatherman (played by Bill Murray, who gets caught in a blizzard he failed to predict, doomed to relive the same day over again until he gets it right) sees a spiritual parallel in our process of overcoming well-entrenched perennial sins. …


Remembering Our Veterans

CGG Weekly by John Reiss

Christians are not called to fight in this world's wars, but we are called to spiritual battle. Hebrews 11 speaks of some heroes of faith—spiritual veterans.


The Joy of the Lord Is Our Strength!

Feast of Tabernacles Sermon by Martin G. Collins

Martin Collins marvels that despite the continuous dramatic increase of material wealth in Modern Israel, this affluence or prosperity has not remotely led to joy. Clinical depression, requiring professional help (usually consisting of a host of powerful anti-depressant drugs) is almost pandemic in North America, with one in …