In Acts 6 & 7 Dr. Luke explores the life of a man called Stephen. Chapter 6 is primarily about his life whilst chapter 7 is primarily about his message. There are ten characteristics that made Stephen a truly great man:
1. 6:1 – He was relatable – he was chosen by the disciples to be a deacon because they needed a Greek. Stephen was probably a Greek (or at the very least had a Greek name). He spoke the same language – linguistically & culturally.
2. 6:2 – He was available & willing. “Serve tables? Sure I’ll do that!”
3. 6:3 – He had a good reputation with his peers – this means he was honest and reliable, faithful and friendly. It didn’t mean that everyone liked him but it did mean that he gave no reason for people to dislike him.
4. 6:3 – He was full of the Holy Spirit – an essential quality
5. 6:3 – He was full of wisdom – he knew how to apply Biblical truths
6. 6:8 – He was full of faith – the word full incidentally means to have control over not how much faith you have. faith controlled him.
7. 6:8 – He was full of power – notice the order that they come – faith then power.
8. 6:9 – He was an example – compare Pauls sermons with Stephens and there is a stricking resemblance. Stephen went to synagogues to challenge the leaders – so did Paul.
9. 6:15 – He had the look of heaven. C.H. Spurgeon, addressing his students concerning ministry, said, `Men, when you teach on heaven, let there always be a glow on your face, a gleam in your eye, and a grin on your lips. When you teach on hell, your normal face will do fine.’
10. 7:1-60 – He believed that God controlled history – past, present and future.