DAY 109 of 365 IN 2021
Acts 6:11 Then they secretly instigated some men to say, "We have heard this man speaking blasphemous words against Moses and God."
We live in the days of ‘influencers’ – not just in social media, but also key opinion leaders in the media, industry, government and even academia. Thus, it is important we get a fair grasp of the the word ‘influence’. Combining two definitions presented a suitable summary: ‘influence is the capacity or power of persons or things to be a compelling force on or produce effects on the character, actions, opinions, development, or behaviour of someone or something,’
A seemingly broad subject area, but here is where it is relevant. When we pay close attention to the text, we read about a crowd, and how the men who were losing their debate with Stephen instigated this crowd against him. Such was the level of malice intended that the debate descended into utter chaos and Stephen got dragged away. A similar incitement of the crowd is noticed when Pilate decided to release Jesus to the Jews.
In both instances, those in authority, with influence, literally urged the crowds on to make a specific choice and with Jesus, the voice of this seemingly large and diverse crowd merged into one chorus ‘Crucify him’! That beloved, is what influence does. When one stands in a position of influence, in whatever capacity, they have power to cause anyone within reach of their influence to fall into a specific line. The question then is ‘which line of influence would that be?’
Truth is if you exert influence at the right frequency, you will find yourself resonating with others to join a cause. The real consideration therefore is to think about the extent to which the phrase ‘thy kingdom come’ finds expression in the manner of influence we exert.