Reading: Stephan’s martyrdom
Reference: Acts 7:52–60; 8:1–3
Acts 7:52: Which of the prophets have not your fathers persecuted? and they have slain them which shewed before of the coming of the Just One; of whom ye have been now the betrayers and murderers:
Acts 7:53: Who have received the law by the disposition of angels, and have not kept it.
Acts 7:54: When they heard these things, they were cut to the heart, and they gnashed on him with their teeth.
Acts 7:55: But he, being full of the Holy Ghost, looked up stedfastly into heaven, and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing on the right hand of God,
Acts 7:56: And said, Behold, I see the heavens opened, and the Son of man standing on the right hand of God.
Acts 7:57: Then they cried out with a loud voice, and stopped their ears, and ran upon him with one accord,
Acts 7:58: And cast him out of the city, and stoned him: and the witnesses laid down their clothes at a young man’s feet, whose name was Saul.
Acts 7:59: And they stoned Stephen, calling upon God, and saying, Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.
Acts 7:60: And he kneeled down, and cried with a loud voice, Lord, lay not this sin to their charge. And when he had said this, he fell asleep.
Acts 8:1: And Saul was consenting unto his death. And at that time there was a great persecution against the church which was at Jerusalem; and they were all scattered abroad throughout the regions of Judæa and Samaria, except the apostles.
Acts 8:2: And devout men carried Stephen to his burial, and made great lamentation over him.
Acts 8:3: As for Saul, he made havock of the church, entering into every house, and haling men and women committed them to prison.
Reading: When they forsook God’s way
Reference: 2 Chron. 24:15–22
II Chronicles 24:15: But Jehoiada waxed old, and was full of days when he died; an hundred and thirty years old was he when he died.
II Chronicles 24:16: And they buried him in the city of David among the kings, because he had done good in Israel, both toward God, and toward his house.
II Chronicles 24:17: Now after the death of Jehoiada came the princes of Judah, and made obeisance to the king. Then the king hearkened unto them.
II Chronicles 24:18: And they left the house of the Lord God of their fathers, and served groves and idols: and wrath came upon Judah and Jerusalem for this their trespass.
II Chronicles 24:19: Yet he sent prophets to them, to bring them again unto the Lord; and they testified against them: but they would not give ear.
II Chronicles 24:20: And the Spirit of God came upon Zechariah the son of Jehoiada the priest, which stood above the people, and said unto them, Thus saith God, Why transgress ye the commandments of the Lord, that ye cannot prosper? because ye have forsaken the Lord, he hath also forsaken you.
II Chronicles 24:21: And they conspired against him, and stoned him with stones at the commandment of the king in the court of the house of the Lord.
II Chronicles 24:22: Thus Joash the king remembered not the kindness which Jehoiada his father had done to him, but slew his son. And when he died, he said, The Lord look upon it, and require it.
Reading: Clean through His Word
Reference: John 15:1–8
John 15:1: I am the true vine, and my Father is the husbandman.
John 15:2: Every branch in me that beareth not fruit he taketh away: and every branch that beareth fruit, he purgeth it, that it may bring forth more fruit.
John 15:3: Now ye are clean through the word which I have spoken unto you.
John 15:4: Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me.
John 15:5: I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing.
John 15:6: If a man abide not in me, he is cast forth as a branch, and is withered; and men gather them, and cast them into the fire, and they are burned.
John 15:7: If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you.
John 15:8: Herein is my Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit; so shall ye be my disciples.