This is the first indication of dissention in the early Christian movement. The complaint has to do with the distribution of food. Apparently, the Greek speaking members of the community believe that their widows are being slighted in the food distribution in preference to the Hebrew speaking widows. The Apostles are asked to arbitrate and their solution is a great example of leadership. They respond by saying: we were set aside to be witnesses to the life, death and resurrection of Jesus not to keep accounts or to wait on tables. However, since the problem cannot be allowed to continue, choose 7 from among yourselves men of good standing, full of the Spirit and wisdom and we will appoint them to this task.
Notice: the Apostles did not name the team but had the community select the team. All I can see is the Apostles dropping their work of prayer and teaching to put out this “fire” in the early church. Notice also that they did arrange for fire fighters to come and fix the problem. They acknowledge the problem and invite the community to make a solution.
Look at the names of the 7 – Most of them have Greek names. Isn’t that just like the Christian church? If you have a complaint show up with a solution and be willing to be a part of the solution. The last thing the church needs is a “complainer” committee. Instead of point out problems, figure out solutions and help fix the problem. Too many of us only want to serve God in an advisory capacity.
One of the 7, Stephan, preaches with great power and authority and is arrested. The parallel between the arrest and stoning of Stephen and Jesus arrest and crucifixion is intentional as we shall see in chapter 7.