E-Book, Study Aids for Open Bible Stories, Story 45, Stephen and Philip, A Bible Story from the Book of Acts

Stephen was one of the earliest Christian evangelists passionate about spreading the gospel of Christ. He inspired many people in Jerusalem and provoked anger among the religious leaders because of his teachings. His faith and perseverance were tested when he was brought before the Sanhedrin, a high council of Jewish leaders, for blasphemy.

Stephen stood firm in his belief, providing a spirited defense in which he reminded the council of the great works that God had done for their ancestors. However, his words fell on deaf ears, and he was dragged out of the city and stoned to death.

Like Stephen, Philip was an evangelist who performed miracles and preached the gospel. As the persecution intensified in Jerusalem, Philip decided to leave the city and travel to Samaria to preach the good news.  One of the most remarkable events of Philip's evangelism was his encounter with an Ethiopian eunuch. While traveling in a chariot, the man was reading the book of Isaiah but could not understand it. The Spirit directed Philip to approach the man and help him understand the scriptures. As a result, the eunuch accepted Jesus and was baptized.

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