The Gift New Testament

A free online Bible study resource


6:1In those days when the number of disciples was multiplying, the Greeks began to complain to the Hebrews that their widows were being discriminated against in the daily food distribution.6:2So The Twelve called everyone together for a meeting and said, “We do not want to neglect the Word of God in order to wait tables.6:3So, brothers and sisters, pick out seven respected men from among you, who are full of the Spirit and wisdom, for us to put in charge of this problem.6:4Then we can concentrate on prayer and dispensing the Word.”1

6:5This solution pleased the whole crowd, so they chose Stephen (a man full of faith and the Holy Spirit), Philip, Prochoros, Nicanor, Timon, Parmenas, and Nicholas (a proselyte from Antioch).6:6They presented themselves to the Ambassadors, who prayed and dedicated them.6:7So the Word of God spread out, and the number of disciples in Jerusalem multiplied tremendously, including a sizable number of priests who heeded the faith.

6:8Now Stephen, full of favor and power, performed great miracles and signs among the people.6:9And then came some members of the Freed Collective, with residents of Cyrene, Alexandria, Cilicia and the province of Asia, debating with Stephen.6:10But they could not refute the wisdom and spirit with which he spoke.6:11So they planted some men in the crowd to say, “We have heard him speaking irreverent things against Moses and God!”

6:12They stirred up the people, along with the elders and scripture scholars who were standing nearby, and they seized him and took him to the Sanhedrin.6:13They also had false witnesses testify, “This person never stops speaking out against this holy place and the law.6:14For we have heard him say that this Jesus of Nazareth will destroy this place and change the customs Moses handed down to us.”6:15And those seated in the Sanhedrin kept staring at him, because they saw that his face looked like the face of a Messenger.

  1. 1In English we may miss the parallel being drawn between “waiting tables” and “dispensing the Word,” since “waiting” and “dispensing” are the same Greek word. “Waiting tables” is something English readers readily understand, while “waiting the Word” would be very unclear. The Twelve are basically saying, “This isn’t our table.”