Acts 7
New American Standard Bible►► 

Stephen’s Defense

1Now the high priest said, “Are these things so?”

2And [a]Stephen said, “Listen to me, [b]brothers and fathers! The God of glory appeared to our father Abraham when he was in Mesopotamia, before he lived in [c]Haran, 3and He said to him, ‘GO FROM YOUR COUNTRY AND YOUR RELATIVES, AND COME TO THE LAND WHICH I WILL SHOW YOU.’ 4Then he left the land of the Chaldeans and settled in [d]Haran. And from there, after his father died, God had him move to this country in which you are now living. 5But He gave him no inheritance in it, not even a foot of ground, and yet, He promised that He would give it to him as a possession, and to his descendants after him, even though he had no child. 6But God spoke to this effect, that his DESCENDANTS WOULD BE STRANGERS IN A LAND THAT WAS NOT THEIRS, AND [e]THEY WOULD ENSLAVE AND MISTREAT THEM FOR FOUR HUNDRED YEARS. 7‘AND WHATEVER NATION TO WHICH THEY ARE ENSLAVED I MYSELF WILL JUDGE,’ said God, ‘AND AFTER THAT THEY WILL COME OUT AND [f]SERVE ME IN THIS PLACE.’ 8And He gave him [g]the covenant of circumcision; and so Abraham fathered Isaac, and circumcised him on the eighth day; and Isaac fathered Jacob, and Jacob, the twelve patriarchs.

9“The patriarchs became jealous of Joseph and sold him into Egypt. Yet God was with him, 10and rescued him from all his afflictions, and granted him favor and wisdom in the sight of Pharaoh, king of Egypt, and he made him governor over Egypt and his entire household.

11“Now a famine came over all Egypt and Canaan, and great affliction with it, and our fathers [h]could find no food. 12But when Jacob heard that there was grain in Egypt, he sent our fathers there the first time. 13And on the second visit, Joseph [i]made himself known to his brothers, and Joseph’s family was revealed to Pharaoh. 14Then Joseph sent word and invited his father Jacob and all his relatives to come to him, seventy-five [j]people in all. 15And Jacob went down to Egypt, and he and our fathers died there. 16And they were brought back from there to [k]Shechem and laid in the tomb which Abraham had purchased for a sum of money from the sons of [l]Hamor in [m]Shechem.

17“But as the time of the promise which God had assured to Abraham was approaching, the people increased and multiplied in Egypt, 18until ANOTHER KING AROSE OVER EGYPT WHO DID NOT KNOW JOSEPH. 19It was he who shrewdly took advantage of our nation and mistreated our fathers in order that they would abandon their infants in the Nile, so that they would not survive. 20At this time Moses was born; and he was beautiful to God. He was nurtured for three months in his father’s home. 21And after he had been put outside, Pharaoh’s daughter [n]took him away and nurtured him as her own son. 22Moses was educated in all the wisdom of the Egyptians, and he was proficient in [o]speaking and action. 23But when he was approaching the age of forty, it entered his [p]mind to visit his countrymen, the sons of Israel. 24And when he saw one of them being treated unjustly, he defended and took vengeance for the oppressed man by fatally striking the Egyptian. 25And he thought that his brothers understood that God was granting them [q]deliverance [r]through him; but they did not understand. 26And on the following day he appeared to them as they were fighting each other, and he tried to reconcile them to peace, by saying, ‘Men, you are brothers, why are you injuring each other?’ 27But the one who was injuring his neighbor pushed him away, saying, ‘WHO MADE YOU A RULER AND JUDGE OVER US? 28YOU DO NOT INTEND TO KILL ME AS YOU KILLED THE EGYPTIAN YESTERDAY, DO YOU?’ 29At this remark, MOSES FLED AND BECAME A STRANGER IN THE LAND OF [s]MIDIAN, where he fathered two sons.

30“After forty years had passed, an angel appeared to him in the wilderness of Mount Sinai, in the flame of a burning thorn bush. 31When Moses saw it, he was astonished at the sight; and as he approached to look more closely, the voice of the Lord came: 32‘I AM THE GOD OF YOUR FATHERS, THE GOD OF ABRAHAM, AND ISAAC, AND JACOB.’ Moses shook with fear and did not dare to look closely. 33But the LORD said to him, ‘[t]REMOVE YOUR SANDALS FROM YOUR FEET, FOR THE PLACE ON WHICH YOU ARE STANDING IS HOLY GROUND. 34I HAVE CERTAINLY SEEN THE OPPRESSION OF MY PEOPLE WHO ARE IN EGYPT, AND HAVE HEARD THEIR GROANING, AND I HAVE COME DOWN TO RESCUE THEM; AND NOW COME, I WILL SEND YOU TO EGYPT.’

35“This Moses whom they disowned, saying, ‘WHO MADE YOU A RULER AND A JUDGE?’ is the one whom God [u]sent to be both a ruler and a deliverer with the [v]help of the angel who appeared to him in the thorn bush. 36This man led them out, performing wonders and [w]signs in the land of Egypt and in the Red Sea, and in the wilderness for forty years. 37This is the Moses who said to the sons of Israel, ‘GOD WILL RAISE UP FOR YOU A PROPHET [x]LIKE ME FROM YOUR COUNTRYMEN.’ 38This is the one who was in the [y]assembly in the wilderness together with the angel who spoke to him at length on Mount Sinai, and who was with our fathers; and he received living words to pass on to you. 39Our fathers were unwilling to be obedient to him; on the contrary they rejected him and turned back to Egypt in their hearts, 40saying to Aaron, ‘MAKE US [z]A GOD WHO WILL GO BEFORE US; FOR THIS MOSES WHO LED US OUT OF THE LAND OF EGYPT—WE DO NOT KNOW WHAT HAPPENED TO HIM.’ 41[aa]At that time they made a [ab]calf and brought a sacrifice to the idol, and were rejoicing in the works of their hands. 42But God turned away and gave them over to [ac]serve the heavenly [ad]lights; as it is written in the book of the prophets: ‘YOU DID NOT OFFER ME VICTIMS AND SACRIFICES FOR FORTY YEARS IN THE WILDERNESS, DID YOU, HOUSE OF ISRAEL? 43YOU ALSO TOOK ALONG THE TABERNACLE OF MOLOCH AND THE STAR OF YOUR GOD [ae]ROMPHA, THE IMAGES WHICH YOU MADE TO WORSHIP. I ALSO WILL DEPORT YOU BEYOND BABYLON.’

44“Our fathers had the tabernacle of testimony in the wilderness, just as He who spoke to Moses directed him to make it according to the pattern which he had seen. 45Our fathers in turn received it, and they also brought it in with Joshua upon dispossessing the [af]nations that God drove out from our fathers, until the time of David. 46[ag]David found favor in God’s sight, and asked that he might [ah]find a dwelling place for the [ai]house of Jacob. 47But it was Solomon who built a house for Him. 48However, the Most High does not dwell in houses made by human hands; as the prophet says:






51“You men who are stiff-necked and uncircumcised in heart and ears are always resisting the Holy Spirit; you are doing just as your fathers did. 52Which one of the prophets did your fathers not persecute? They killed those who had previously announced the coming of the Righteous One, and you have now become betrayers and murderers of Him; 53you who received the Law as ordained by angels, and yet did not keep it.”

Stephen Put to Death

54Now when they heard this, they were infuriated, and they began gnashing their teeth at him. 55But he, being full of the Holy Spirit, looked intently into heaven and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing at the right hand of God; 56and he said, “Behold, I see the heavens opened and the Son of Man standing at the right hand of God.” 57But they shouted with loud voices, and covered their ears and rushed at him with one [aj]mind. 58When they had driven him out of the city, they began stoning him; and the witnesses laid aside their cloaks at the feet of a young man named Saul. 59They went on stoning Stephen as he called on the Lord and said, “Lord Jesus, receive my spirit!” 60Then he fell on his knees and cried out with a loud voice, “Lord, do not hold this sin against them!” Having said this, he [ak]fell asleep.

[a] 2 Lit he
[b] 2 Lit men, brothers
[c] 2 Gr Charran
[d] 4 Gr Charran
[e] 6 I.e., the people of the land (Egypt)
[f] 7 Or worship
[g] 8 Or a
[h] 11 Lit were not finding
[i] 13 Or was made known
[j] 14 Lit souls
[k] 16 Gr Sychem
[l] 16 Gr Emmor
[m] 16 Gr Sychem
[n] 21 Or adopted him
[o] 22 Lit his words and actions
[p] 23 Lit heart
[q] 25 Or salvation
[r] 25 Lit through his hand
[s] 29 Gr Madiam
[t] 33 Lit Untie the sandal of your
[u] 35 Lit has sent
[v] 35 Lit hand
[w] 36 I.e., confirming miracles
[x] 37 Or as He raised up me
[y] 38 Gr ekklesia
[z] 40 Lit gods, plural, but prob. refers to a singular deity
[aa] 41 Lit in those days
[ab] 41 Or young bull
[ac] 42 Or worship
[ad] 42 Lit host
[ae] 43 Other mss spell it: Romphan, Rempham, Raiphan; or Rephan
[af] 45 Or Gentiles
[ag] 46 Lit He who
[ah] 46 I.e., build the temple
[ai] 46 I.e., the people of Israel
[aj] 57 Or purpose
[ak] 60 I.e., died

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