1 Kings 8:1-66; Acts 7:51–8:13; Psalm 129:1-8; Proverbs 17:1
That Thine Eyes May Be Open Toward this House Day and Night
But will God indeed dwell on the earth? behold, the heaven and heaven of heavens cannot contain thee; how much less this house that I have builded? Yet have thou respect unto the prayer of thy servant, and to his supplication, O LORD my God, to hearken unto the cry and to the prayer, which thy servant prayeth before thee today: that thine eyes may be open toward this house night and day, even toward the place of which thou hast said, My name shall be there: that thou mayest hearken unto the prayer which thy servant shall make toward this place. And hearken thou to the supplication of thy servant, and of thy people Israel, when they shall pray toward this place: and hear thou in heaven thy dwelling place: and when thou hearest, forgive. – 1 Kings 8:27-30
The Lord Our God Be With Us, as He was With Our Fathers
The LORD our God be with us, as he was with our fathers: let him not leave us, nor forsake us: that he may incline our hearts unto him, to walk in all his ways, and to keep his commandments, and his statutes, and his judgments, which he commanded our fathers. And let these my words, wherewith I have made supplication before the LORD, be nigh unto the LORD our God day and night, that he maintain the cause of his servant, and the cause of his people Israel at all times, as the matter shall require: that all the people of the earth may know that the LORD is God, and that there is none else. Let your heart therefore be perfect with the LORD our God, to walk in his statutes, and to keep his commandments, as at this day. – 1 Kings 8:57-61
Stephen’s Death; Saul’s Consent
Ye stiffnecked and uncircumcised in heart and ears, ye do always resist the Holy Ghost: as your fathers did, so do ye. Which of the prophets have not your fathers persecuted? and they have slain them which shewed before of the coming of the Just One; of whom ye have been now the betrayers and murderers: who have received the law by the disposition of angels, and have not kept it.
When they heard these things, they were cut to the heart, and they gnashed on him with their teeth.
But he, being full of the Holy Ghost, looked up stedfastly into heaven, and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing on the right hand of God, and said, Behold, I see the heavens opened, and the Son of man standing on the right hand of God.
Then they cried out with a loud voice, and stopped their ears, and ran upon him with one accord, and cast him out of the city, and stoned him: and the witnesses laid down their clothes at a young man’s feet, whose name was Saul. And they stoned Stephen, calling upon God, and saying, Lord Jesus, receive my spirit. And he kneeled down, and cried with a loud voice, Lord, lay not this sin to their charge. And when he had said this, he fell asleep.
And Saul was consenting unto his death. – Acts 7:51-8:1a
Therefore They that Were Scattered Abroad
And at that time there was a great persecution against the church which was at Jerusalem; and they were all scattered abroad throughout the regions of Judaea and Samaria, except the apostles. And devout men carried Stephen to his burial, and made great lamentation over him. As for Saul, he made havock of the church, entering into every house, and haling men and women committed them to prison. Therefore they that were scattered abroad went every where preaching the word. – Acts 8:1b-4
Therefore – for that reason; because of that; to that end
The death of Stephen was the start of great persecution against the church. Saul was a ringleader and, according to this text, made havoc on the church. BUT the Bible says, THEREFORE.
Therefore because of Stephen’s witness and therefore because of Stephen’s death, and therefore because of that persecution, the people were scattered, and they went everywhere preaching the Word. THEREFORE we have the Gospel today, and THEREFORE we have salvation and eternal life through our Lord JESUS CHRIST! Amen!!!
Let Them All Be Confounded and Turned Back that Hate Zion
The LORD is righteous: he hath cut asunder the cords of the wicked. Let them all be confounded and turned back that hate Zion. – Psalm 129:4-5
Better a Dry Morsel, and Quiet
Better is a dry morsel, and quietness therewith, than an house full of sacrifices with strife. – Proverbs 17:1