December 26, 2007

Feast of Stephen and John

When you sing the song ... and I'm trying to remember the tune and words, but it's about Good King Wenceslaus and there's the line - "... on the feast of Stephen".

Rembrant's "Stoning of Stephen" - Rembrant's own face is the man facing us with the rock



This is the church calendar day that Stephen's story is remembered. And like King Wenceslaus, Stephen was killed because of his convictions about the revelation of Christ in the world. Stephen was stoned to death, with the future Apostle Paul standing by holding everyone's outer garments. We read about it in the book of Acts.

Stephen was the very first martyr of the Christian faith. Remember him for his boldness, courage, and faithfulness. He was given the church job of caring for the orphans and widows.

So, as I posted about Boxing Day, this day can be a day (though in loving God, we should always want this characteristic every day of the year) for selfless care of the poor, the despised, the rejected, and the unloved.



John the Evangelist
John the Divine, the Beloved Apostle, is acknowledged this day as well. Remember the books of the Bible he wrote. He lived long, ending on the island of Patmos where he wrote the Revelation of Christ, a superb conclusion to Holy Scripture. The book of Genesis begins the account of man's spiritual odyssey by describing our expulsion from the Garden of Eden. The book of Revelation is a vision of our restoration to Paradise. John wrote of Jesus' divinity, the Word made flesh. Jesus entrusted his mother to John. It is John that wrote Jesus words, "Let him who is thirsty come and take the waters of life".
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