Acts 6:6-10
Acts 6:6 (KJB)
Whom they set before the apostles: and when they had prayed, they laid their hands on them.
These seven men were not just accepted as is but they had to appear before the Apostles and no doubt they were probably questioned as to their salvation and their commitment to Christ. This is how it should be in the church, when someone is suggested for an office, they need to be scrutinized by those in charge as to their salvation experience and their commitment to Christ, plus there should also be an investigation into the character of the person. Too many times, people are placed in leadership positions in the church not because of their qualifications, but because of who they know and that almost always winds up in a bad situation for the church. I attended a church some years ago and one of the men was not attending church, so to remedy this situation, they wanted to offer him a position as Elder so he would come to church. How ludicrous can one be, if a person is not interested in coming to church, why would you want to make him a ruler in the church because obviously he is totally deficient in all areas spiritual. This is precisely why the seven men were brought before the Apostles and evaluated, then they were found acceptable so they prayed and gave their approbation by laying on of their hands.
Acts 6:7 (KJB)
And the word of God increased; and the number of the disciples multiplied in Jerusalem greatly; and a great company of the priests were obedient to the faith.
Once again the evangelistic fervor was operational. The word of God had increased or grown rapidly which resulted in many more becoming saved and this time the leaders could not keep the influence of the Gospel out of the Temple as a great number of the Priests had become saved. I am sure that this was once again becoming a great dilemma for the leaders, especially with many of the Priests becoming saved. According to Josephus, at this time of Pentecost in Jerusalem, there may have been as much as 20,000 Priests. If a great majority of them became saved and with their understanding of the Hebrew Scriptures, they would have been able to do some great preaching while confirming Christ as Messiah according to the Scriptures. This verse also shows that when the right people are placed in the right positions according to their spiritual gifts, then the word of God progresses and increases and many become saved, even those who we think are beyond salvation. It would not surprise me is some of the Priests that became saved were of the company who called for the crucifixion of Christ.
Acts 6:8 (KJB)
And Stephen, full of faith and power, did great wonders and miracles among the people.
Full - Complete
Now this verse focuses on Stephen. He was chosen as one of the seven who was to wait tables but this shows that just because he was doing that particular ministry does not mean that he was not qualified to do other types of ministry. Stephen had a powerful ministry which was akin to what the Apostles were doing. He was an example of a Christian who was completely sold out to the Lord Jesus Christ. Here was a Christian who was not part of the band of the Apostles yet had a very powerful ministry like them, which shows us that not only those who are church leaders are mightily empowered by God, but other Christians also and Pastors must be very careful that they do not quench their spirit and ability because of jealousy. If a Christian in a congregation has great potential, they need to be nurtured so their gift and talents will be cultivated properly and then placed into the proper ministry according to their spiritual gift.
Acts 6:9 (KJB)
Then there arose certain of the synagogue, which is called the synagogue of the Libertines, and Cyrenians, and Alexandrians, and of them of Cilicia and of Asia, disputing with Stephen.
Than as soon as Stephen was beginning to work mightily among the people, the opposition starts to gather. The Libertines were former slaves that were set free by their Roman Masters. The Cyrenians were from Cyrene which was located west of Egypt on the Mediterranean coast. The Alexandrians came from Alexandria, Egypt which produced the largest school of Gnosticism. It was Alexandria where the pure Bible manuscripts were corrupted and the corruptions are inside every modern version from 1881 on. Cilicia was Paulís home province located in southeastern Asia Minor. Then Asia was the area of western Asia Minor. These men had begun to dispute the biblical teachings of Stephen. It is really amazing as the scriptures teach that Stephen was doing miracles among the people and yet these intellects were actually disputing these things. How do you dispute a man that has been blind or lame and can now see or walk? What could you possibly offer as an argument against such things? It is the same today, a person gets saved who did drugs or alcohol. How can one actually argue against the fact that the Gospel has transformed their lives, when the evidence is standing right there?
Acts 6:10 (KJB)
And they were not able to resist the wisdom and the spirit by which he spake.
Resist - Oppose, withstand, or stand up against
Stephenís defense of the faith and his proclamation of the Gospel was so powerful that his detractors were unable to oppose it with their beliefs. Stephen spoke in the power of the Holy Spirit and in the prescribed manner that the Lord prophesied. (Mat 10:19 KJV) But when they deliver you up, take no thought how or what ye shall speak: for it shall be given you in that same hour what ye shall speak. Stephen was now fulfilling the Scripture of Matthew 10:19. Stephen would have no idea what arguments would be offered and that is why the Lord tells us that the wisdom of defense will be given in that very hour as needed and as a result, they could not match it. (Acts 7:51 KJV) Ye stiffnecked and uncircumcised in heart and ears, ye do always resist the Holy Ghost: as your fathers did, so do ye. In Stephenís sermon in Acts 7, he had made the statement plainly that they always resisted the Holy Spirit and that is why they were unable to see truth just as the group opposing him in this verse.