St. Stephen, Pray for Us

Today is the feast of St. Stephen, the first man to ever be murdered for his faith in Jesus. It’s important to celebrate and remember St. Stephen because since then, though countries have come and gone, there are still martyrs. In fact there are more today then there were under the persecution of the Romans, or any tyrant since.

Every Christmas, we can count on this kind of atrocity in the news. Why?

Jesus says about the Church, “A servant is not greater than his master. If they persecuted me, they will persecute you; if they kept my word, they will keep yours also.”

Muslim extremists think this is the best way to get rid of the Christians, but they could not be more wrong. Treat a Christian as Christ himself was treated, and you create the ideal circumstances for him to become a saint. The Church has always thrived, and continues to thrive, under the threat of persecution and death.

ststephen“‘You stiff-necked people, uncircumcised in heart and ears, you always resist the Holy Spirit. As your fathers did, so do you. Which of the prophets did not your fathers persecute? And they killed those who announced beforehand the coming of the Righteous One, whom you have now betrayed and murdered, you who received the law as delivered by angels and did not keep it.’ Now when they heard these things they were enraged, and they ground their teeth against him. But he, full of the Holy Spirit, gazed into heaven and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing at the right hand of God; and he said, ‘Behold, I see the heavens opened, and the Son of man standing at the right hand of God.’ But they cried out with a loud voice and stopped their ears and rushed together upon him. Then they cast him out of the city and stoned him; and the witnesses laid down their garments at the feet of a young man named Saul. And as they were stoning Stephen, he prayed, “Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.” And he knelt down and cried with a loud voice, “Lord, do not hold this sin against them.” And when he had said this, he fell asleep.” (Acts 7:51-60)

Praise God for his brave martyrs.

Ora Pro Nobis.

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About anotherepigone

I'm a 26 year old Catholic, software developer, writer, gamer, and all-around nerd. I write for orthodoxcatholicism.com. Check it out and leave me a comment!

Posted on December 26, 2013, in Catholic and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 33 Comments.

  1. Stephen is dead unfortunately..
    Necromancy is not a biblical practice you know..
    I.e. attempting to pray to saints..
    You really should get yourself a bible…a KJV
    :D

    • Thanks for the advice, however, St. Stephen is alive.

      Speaking of dead men, I don’t put much stock in the ‘authorization’ of ye olde, dead, heretical, English king, but here, let me quote the KJV: “For if the dead rise not, then is not Christ raised: And if Christ be not raised, your faith is vain; ye are yet in your sins.”

      In all seriousness, have a look at some basic Catholic arguments on this topic. At the very least you’ll come out at the end offering better arguments and not sounding like Jack Chick ;)

      http://www.catholic.com/tracts/praying-to-the-saints

      • The ressurection of the dead has not taken place yet..
        and do not post your rubbishy links to my blog thank you.

      • First of all, you’re posting on our blog, not yours.

        I’d gladly debate with you, but you don’t seem to be willing to read and consider an opposing argument.

      • i read a bible mister, not your catechism..
        you have no idea what i am willing to do,,
        believe it or not, I only read a bible, if i do any reading.

        yes my mistake,, i thought you were posting on my blog, i dont think i was looking that closely.. i had a long day..
        sorry about that.
        so expecting me to read your catechism is just going nowhere..it is not scripture.

      • The link I sent is not the Catechism of the Catholic Church, it is an article which defends our beliefs using scripture.

        If you don’t believe me, go ahead and ctrl-f “catechism” on that page. It isn’t even mentioned.

      • I dont care…no offence, but I prefer to stick to what the bible says. as far as I am able..
        unlike your so called pope..

      • If you truly cared about following what the Bible says, you’d honestly study how others have interpreted it. Did you really come up with the whole mess of rapture theology on your own? I’m willing to bet you had it preached to you with a few verses to support it.

        Do you think you’re any different from a cradle Catholic who hears the same kind of preaching about praying to saints? I think you see what you want to see in scripture and you’re afraid to test the foundation of your beliefs against honest opposition. I think you believe in a Christ of your own making, one who is convenient to you, not the real, living God.

        Since you’re afraid to click my link, I will give you some scripture directly. Revelation 5:8. The four beasts and the elders in heaven offer bowls of incense (or “vials of odours” in the KJV) which John says are the prayers of the saints. You say it is absurd and evil for us to ask a saint to pray for us, but John saw them offering our prayer to God in heaven.

        (On a side note… are you aware that the KJV was translated by Anglicans, who believe in praying to saints? Interesting, isn’t it. The only translation you will read was written by a bunch of necromancers.)

      • why would i study how others have interpreted it.
        dont be so patronising as well thank you.

        the kjv was translated not only by the church of england, but by puritan scholars also. so that they could not finish the work unless they were agreed, and you know what the puritans thought of the anglicans as you call them, or church of england..

        there is no doctrine in scripture legitimising the so called prayers to saints.. Jesus never mentioned that necessity, he would have said something about it..
        your so biblical meanderings are far too lightweight to be taken seriously.

      • You deny that our prayers are heard by the saints, despite what John says. Do you not believe the words of scripture?

        Every part of scripture should be taken seriously, don’t you think?

        I gave you one tiny quote from scripture, and you can’t be bothered to reply to it? For what purpose do you even answer me then? Surely you don’t think I’m going to be convinced by more accusations if you won’t back them up. Let me be clear: you’re wrong about all of your accusations. If you want to debate them reasonably, feel free. If not, then we have nothing further to discuss.

      • now your really twisting Scripture…
        I agree that every part of scripture should be taken seriously..

        when Jesus taught his disciples to pray, he never mentioned so called prayers to saints…

      • Revelation 5v8 does not indicate the necessity for so called prayers to the saints.
        As I said, Jesus would have told us in the Luke 11, and the other Gospels, that it was OK to do so, and Paul the Apostle, certainly never mentions it.
        So I think that you need to get a proper bible, instead of sticking your head in that unbiblical catechism.

      • I agree, Revelation 5:8 doesn’t indicate any necessity to pray to saints. That’s not what I said.

        I said that it indicates saints in heaven are aware of the prayers of Christians on earth. That is very clear from the text alone. We know that they offer our prayers. And what are prayers, really? Not literally incense of course; prayers are thoughts and movements of the human will. Therefore to offer them, the saints would have to know them.

        No Catechism involved, there’s no point in continuing to bring it up.

        Of course, once we understand that the saints in heaven hear our prayers and also pray to God on our behalf, it’s very simple to see that when we hear in scripture that we are to pray for one another, the saints in heaven are by no means exempt.

        Paul asks for prayers numerous times. He instructs the early Church to offer prayers for others. Jesus tells us to pray for our enemies. Jesus also blesses people based on the faith of others who come to him on their behalf numerous times in the gospels. Think of the centurion’s servant in Matthew 8. He was healed because his master went to Jesus on his behalf. Think of the paralytic lowered to Jesus by his friends (that appears in each of the synoptic gospels).

      • the only one any christian is supposed to prayers/petitions up to is god, in the name of Jesus christ,, Jesus mentions no-one else that we are to offer prayers to.
        Paul is speaking people who are alive on this earth,, i.e. other christians/saints..not instructing them to pray to saints in heaven..
        I think that you need to get a grip of yourself, and actually get a proper bible.

      • Your KJV tells you that the saints in heaven hear your prayers and offer them to God. Your KJV also says everything else I mentioned.

        God reveals that the prayers of the righteous man are powerful. None are more righteous than those in heaven, who have been perfected and freed from all sin by the grace of God.

      • I think that you need to study prayer properly for once.
        try using a Bible though.

      • No response on Revelation 5:8 eh? I’d love to hear what you believe that passage means.

      • You say in that post that Rev 5:8 doesn’t mention prayers TO saints. You’re correct on that point. Remember how you already said that, and I agreed with you? Scroll up a little and you’ll see it.

        Revelation 5:8 is just a starting point. It shows that the saints in heaven are fully aware of our prayers, despite their lack of divine attributes. Until you accept that point, there is no point even discussing whether prayer to saints is permissible or good. You say it’s impossible because saints would have to be omniscient. Rev 5:8 says otherwise.

        You’re correct in identifying the 24 elders as the patriarchs and apostles, but have you considered that they also symbolize the entirety of God’s people (ie: those who were faithful to Him in the old testament and in the new)?

      • It shows nothing of the kind,, at least in the way that you mean.. they were just carrying vials, they would not know the nature of each individual prayer..Only God in Heaven, can know that,and of course the Holy Spirit,

        Oh dear, your insight is sadly lacking!! :D

      • Do you believe that the saints in heaven were offering literal containers of incense?

        John points out that the vials of odours are a symbol for prayers. Since prayers are not physical items one can offer physically, how do you suppose they offer the prayers?

      • John does not point out anything, He was given the words to Write under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit,
        Revelation is a hard book to understand,I have read it loads of times,,mainly because their is a blessing attached to doing so.

        I praise god, that I do not know everything, and that I have to keep studying…to show myself approved of God…

        What the bible says, is what God says,,
        I know there is a lot of symbolic imagery in Revelation, and the key I think is in understanding the OT Tabernacle,, etc,,,

        Have you and sbyvl come to an understanding then,, as he wants you to post to his blog or something…
        always good to talk to someone who disagrees with you, ,,, :D

      • Of course, John points this out under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. It’s worth noting though that it’s written not as something John saw, but something the Spirit allowed him to understand. He saw the elders offering incense, and he understood that the incense represented the prayers of the saints.

        So, applying logic to the fact that the saints in heaven offer prayers, and the nature of prayer (a movement of the human will), we can safely say they must offer the prayers with their wills.

      • but nothing to indicate that their is necessity to pray to saints!!
        Jesus never mentioned it, neither did the Apostle’s..
        therefore so called prayers to saints etc is antibiblical..heresy.
        #heresy

      • Not in this passage, of course.

        I should point out that “praying to saints” is a bit of a misleading term. It makes it sound like the saint takes the place of God, which is of course what a lot of protestants immediately think. Of course that would be blasphemous. The saints have no power of their own, of course, and no ability to do anything except to intercede with God. But, like us, through God they have the power to do anything.

        You replied to my comment on Reddit, and said you would pray for me. Did you find my request to be unbiblical? Of course not, we are instructed many times in scripture to pray for one another. Requesting prayers from each other is completely natural.

        We know from Rev 5:8 that saints hear us, and from Rev 8:3-4 that the angels and saints add their prayers to ours, and God answers them. Why then do you find the idea of requesting prayers from the saints and angels unnatural? It flows from all that we know in scripture, and it has been practiced unceasingly by Christians from the very first century on. Before early Christians even knew the books and letters of the new testament, they knew that the prayers of the martyrs were with them.

      • we do not know that the saints in Revelation 5v8 hear our prayers at all..they are not omnipresent, as god is, or The Holy Spirit is..
        there is no indication of interaction between the saints in heaven and the ones on earth..
        and why don’t you catholics do so called prayers to the other elders of the old testament. then,
        like offering up so called prayer to Abraham, or Isaac or Jacob??

        Stick to what the Bible says,,
        Only the Holy Spirit intercedes… for the Christian…
        No other Intercessor,,,but Jesus Christ…

        Stick to what the Bible teaches..

      • anotherepigone

        I agree, saints are not omnipresent.

        How do you think they offer prayers to God without knowing them?

        Of course, Christ is the mediator between God and man, as 1 Timothy 2:5 says. No one can take the place of Christ.

        This is not saying you cannot pray for others. In fact we are commanded to pray for others, and protestants have no issue with that. Why do you act as if praying for someone is trying to take the place of Christ, only when it suits you? It is not an honest argument.

      • I dont mind someone being prayed for, a long a they are living..

        Stop putting words into my mouth..

        NOW FUCK OFF !!

      • “Let no evil talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for edifying, as fits the occasion, that it may impart grace to those who hear.” – Ephesians 6:12

        Please, if we Christians can’t speak with love to one another, how can we be an example to anyone?

        “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.” – Matthew 5:16

        Curious, do you believe it would be wrong for someone in heaven to pray for someone on earth?

      • WELL STOP TRYING TO PUT WORDS IN MY MOUTH THEN!!

        YOU RE-INTERPRET WHAT I SAY TO YOU, THEN FIRE IT BACK AT ME AS THOUGH i SAID IT..
        MESSAGE SOMEONE ELSE.!!

        Jesus is the ONLY Mediator between men and God..

      • I agree that \i should have been more polite,
        but i do not accept you as a christian..

        As far as i am concerned,you are no christian, and not a brother..
        I am not perfect,, so do get a tad irate sometimes,,

        especially with catholics that think that they are christian, and are not, and do lie,
        and are adherents of demonic doctrines, and dogmas, of man’s invention.

      • for someone to be able to pray to a saint, that saint would surely have to be omnipresent, omniscient.. and this is not the case.
        none of the Apostles said anything about praying to Stephen, after he was murdered,,,and so therefore, there is no biblical mandate to do so,,
        Also, there is only one way of access to the Father, and that is in the name of Jesus christ, in the name of Jesus Christ, in the Spirit, and in truth.

        you need to repent mister..
        and also i might add, that i do not need that any man should teach me, not you, or any super duper so called pastor on this earth, I do learn from them, but check everything in scripture, before I swallow it.
        you catholics are forever engaged in demonic practices, of idolatry, and mariolatry, with your statures and rosaries.. its nauseating.

        And do not take me for a fool Mister.. thank you. :D

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