Now about that time Herod the king stretched forth his hands to vex certain of the church.
Read: Acts 6:8-15
8 And Stephen, full of faith and power, did great wonders and miracles among the people.
9 Then there arose certain of the synagogue, which is called the synagogue of the Libertines, and Cyrenians, and Alexandrians, and of them of Cilicia and of Asia, disputing with Stephen.
10 And they were not able to resist the wisdom and the spirit by which he spake.
11 Then they suborned men, which said, We have heard him speak blasphemous words against Moses, and against God.
12 And they stirred up the people, and the elders, and the scribes, and came upon him, and caught him, and brought him to the council,
13 And set up false witnesses, which said, This man ceaseth not to speak blasphemous words against this holy place, and the law:
14 For we have heard him say, that this Jesus of Nazareth shall destroy this place, and shall change the customs which Moses delivered us.
15 And all that sat in the council, looking stedfastly on him, saw his face as it had been the face of an angel.
Holiness is very necessary for anyone who wants to fulfil destiny and make it to Heaven. Holiness also makes God to hide you in His bosom (Psalm 91:4). In other words, holiness provides a cover for the holy, whereas sin exposes the sinner. Sin exposes the one who commits it to shame, disgrace and pain, and it makes the sinner vulnerable to the attacks of the enemy. When you combine holiness with being a vessel of honour, you become doubly precious to God. You become like a delicate egg in His hands. This is why Psalm 103:13-14 says God will treat such a vessel with lots of care, remembering how weak and fragile he or she is. From today, the Lord will treat you with special care. You will be special to God and He will hide you in His love in Jesus’ Name.
Moreover, as an instrument of honour, never rest on your oars. Whatever level you may be on presently, you have only started; you have not yet attained the heights that God is taking you to. If you think that you have already arrived with respect to Kingdom tasks, you may attract unwanted things to yourself. Note however that the more God uses you, the more you will be of interest to the kingdom of Satan. Satan never wants any believer in Christ to end up in Heaven; so he will do all he can to stop you. Take Peter for instance: he loved Jesus so much that he vowed never to deny Him. This he said in spite of what Jesus had foretold would happen (Matthew 26:34-35). Satan saw Peter as a vessel of honour in God’s hands and immediately marked him out as a target. He did everything possible to bring him down, but Jesus prayed for him and he overcame.
Similarly, Satan picked on another vessel of honour – Stephen. Stephen was holy, full of faith and full of the Holy Spirit. He was also full of wisdom and was used to perform mighty signs and wonders in the early Church. Satan therefore stirred up serious opposition against Stephen, but he overcame them. When this failed, the enemies connived and brought false witnesses to lie against him. Satan never keeps to any rule of decency when he fights. He fights dirty. He kept working at it until he got Stephen killed (Acts 7:56-60). But unknown to him, when he thought he had won that battle, his chief vessel of persecution, Saul, was arrested by God and did even far greater works for God than Stephen did. In the end, the devil regretted his action. He wished he had left Stephen alone to have been spared the immense irrecoverable losses he got from his ex-loyal fanatic – Paul.
Pray that every target of Satan in your local church be protected from falling.
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