Acts 7:57 At this they covered their ears and, yelling at the top of their voices, they all rushed at him.
It’s amazing sometimes what people will do when confronted with unwelcome truth. The thing that jumps out at me about this is how they both yelled and covered their ears. They didn’t want to risk hearing another word Stephen said! We make a joke of it, with people putting their hands over their ears and saying, “La la la la I can’t hear you,” but in this case it was deadly serious. We don’t like to be confronted with unpleasant truth, and how we respond speaks volumes about our spiritual and emotional maturity. Al Gore became famous, and even received a Nobel Prize, for producing a movie called An Inconvenient Truth, but the only problem was that it was largely made up of distortions and outright lies. That he himself didn’t believe the things he was proclaiming is proved by the fact that he lived in a huge house that used several times as much energy as the average home, and he had his own private jet in addition to that. Those who have been swept up in that “movement” are always loudest about other people reducing their “carbon footprint.” When you are speaking genuine truth, you don’t have to silence your opposition. The fact that some people are working so hard today to silence opposing viewpoints on various subjects makes it very clear that truth isn’t on their side. When we are dealing in God’s truth, as Stephen was, we tend to get much the same response from some quarters that he did. That’s why we need to be wise, but that doesn’t mean we need to be silent. That’s coming out right now in response to Critical Race Theory. Thankfully, the opposition to children being indoctrinated with CRT, along with totally unscientific concepts of sex and gender, is rising to a high level, with parents standing up for their children in various ways. That such theories exist isn’t the issue, it’s that they push them on the most impressionable and that they insist that all other viewpoints be shut down – just like the people who stoned Stephen!
I’m very thankful to have been raised to value objective truth, and that God was always presented as the ultimate Truth. After all, Jesus said explicitly, “I am the way and the truth and the life.” (John 14:6) Also, I am very grateful for my 7th Grade English teacher, who taught me to expect and recognize bias in what was presented to me as truth. Bias doesn’t mean something is untrue, just that it isn’t the total picture. My occupation is that of Truth Presenter, both as a pastor/missionary and as a school teacher. I have problems with inaccuracy at times in both those roles, and I have had to apologize. I am not to be hesitant in presenting what I know to be true, but I must remember that I personally don’t have the whole truth, (1 Corinthians 13:9-12) and always speak the truth I know in love. (Ephesians 4:15) When I am given information that is unwelcome to me, I am to let the Holy Spirit be my filter first of all, and then examine things objectively. I must not imitate the men who stoned Stephen!
Father, there’s so much junk being proclaimed as truth these days. Help me stand for Your truth without attacking those who are deceived by the lies. May my life be a demonstration of the truth I proclaim, for the blessing of many and for Your glory. Thank You. Praise God!