“But he,” Stephen, “full of the Holy Spirit gazed into Heaven and saw the glory of God and Jesus standing at the right hand of God.”
– Acts 7:55
What an amazing scene. We see all over Scripture Jesus pictured as seated at the right hand of God, but here we see Him standing at the right hand of God. In this moment where Stephen is about to be stoned, he’s about to lose his life for being a faithful witness to Christ, full of the Holy Spirit just like we saw in Acts chapter 6, full of the Holy Spirit, He looks up into Heaven and gets this glimpse of the glory of God, and Jesus standing there at the right hand of God, his intercessor.
Acts 7:55 Relates to Romans 8
I just think about this passage being an illustration of Romans 8 when we are taught that Jesus Himself is interceding for us at God’s right hand. “Who will bring any charge against those whom God has chosen? It’s God who justifies. Who is he that condemns?” Christ Jesus who died, more than that, who was raised to life and is at the right hand of God interceding for us. And the verses that follow after that, “Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble, or hardship, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword?”
That’s exactly what’s going on here in Acts 7:55. Shall trouble, persecution, separate us from the love of Christ? What does Romans 8 say? “No. No. We are considered as sheep to be slaughtered, but in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us.” Because nothing, “Neither life nor death, neither angels nor demons, neither the present or the future, neither any powers, neither heights nor depths nor anything else in all creation is able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
Christ’s intercession gives us boldness and peace in every circumstance.
Jesus Intercedes on Our Behalf
Oh, Acts 7:55, it is just a perfect illustration of Romans chapter 8, at the end of that chapter. Jesus interceding for us. Standing at the right hand of God on our behalf when we walk through suffering, when we experience persecution even specifically here for proclaiming the gospel that Jesus is standing on our behalf as our Intercessor.
I can only imagine just the emboldening effect of that as Stephen says, “I see Heaven open. The Son of Man standing on the right hand of God.” Which actually made it a lot worse. They started yelling and cried out with a loud voice, and rushed together at him, and they started stoning him, but there’s a single-minded, resolute focus here that Stephen’s just saying, “I am living for Him. He’s my intercessor. I have nothing to fear, not even death itself. I have nothing to fear when Jesus is my Redeemer and Intercessor at the right hand of God.”
So, may we live emboldened today by that reality in our lives, that nothing can come against us to separate us from the love of Christ, so let’s be bold as witnesses. Let’s proclaim the gospel. Let’s live with zeal for the glory of God knowing that we have an Intercessor at the right hand of God who ever lives and pleads for us, who stands on our behalf.
A Prayer of Thanks and Provision
Let’s pray. Oh, God, thank you, thank you, thank you for sending Jesus to die on the cross, to rise from the dead, to ascend to your right hand where right now He is interceding for us. Oh, God, I think about just every facet of my life in which I need you, and others who are listening to this, in every facet of their lives they need you. Lord, thank you. Jesus, thank you for being at the Father’s right hand right now and promising to give us everything we need.
So, we look to you as our Intercessor. We pray for your provision in our lives. Grant us everything we need: wisdom, strength, peace, boldness. Lord, everything we need to live for your glory and to not fear anything in this world because nothing can separate us from your love. What a glorious truth. Help us to live in it today and help us to live with this kind of single-minded, resolute focus in our lives today. Help us to live with our eyes fixed, our gaze fixed on you. We pray in Jesus name. Amen.
So, may we live emboldened today that nothing can come against us to separate us from the love of Christ. So, let’s be bold as witnesses. Let’s proclaim the gospel. Let’s live with zeal for the glory of God knowing that we have an Intercessor at the right hand of God whoever lives and pleads for us, who stands on our behalf.