You stiff-necked people, uncircumcised in heart and ears, you always resist the Holy Spirit. As your fathers did, so do you. — Acts 7:51
So the Sanhedrin had their list of indictments against Stephen, who was preaching the good news of Jesus Christ. But as Stephen closes off his defense against these indictments, we listen as he brings a list of indictments against them. He clarifies that he has not committed blasphemy at all, but they have, the "so-called" religious leaders of the day. Thus he turns the tables on their claims of blasphemy against them, stating that they have committed blasphemy. The ultimate blasphemy. They have rejected God, killed his Son, and are resistant to the Holy Spirit. Thus Stephen moves from being on the defense to the offense. And he closes his talk by stating that they have been stubborn, insensitive, and resistant to the Holy Spirit. And he throws in one more final jab — This has always been your pattern. It is for you and was for every one of your fathers.
If you know an obstinate person, you may know a little of what this moment is like. You may also know that you could present the truth most eloquently, and a truly obstinate person will continue to reject it. And there are all kinds of factors that contribute to their resistance.
But rather than consider someone else's obstinate nature, I think it is better always to evaluate our own. We can all be stubborn, insensitive, and resistant to other people. But sometimes, these people may be guided by the Holy Spirit. And if we too quickly resist the person, we might discover we are resisting a truth coming from God.
So instead of being obstinate to the truth today, try this. In those moments, you become instantly resistant, prepare your heart, listen more carefully, and invite God to reveal his will. And then carefully discern what truth God is trying to communicate. For I know this, in a battle of wills with God, there is always a loser. And that loser is not God. So why not lose sooner than later and live this life with a lot less regret.
ASK THIS: Is your heart obstinate to someone today? Who?
DO THIS: When you become resistant, prepare your heart, listen more carefully, and invite God to reveal his will.
PRAY THIS: God, may I not resist your will as you make it known through others.
PLAY THIS: Whatever Your Plan Is — Josie Buchanan.
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