English Standard Version ESV
The Message Bible MSG
1 Now in these days when the disciples were increasing in number, a complaint by the Hellenists arose against the Hebrews because their widows were being neglected in the daily distribution.
During this time, as the disciples were increasing in numbers by leaps and bounds, hard feelings developed among the Greek-speaking believers - "Hellenists" - toward the Hebrew-speaking believers because their widows were being discriminated against in the daily food lines.
2 And the twelve summoned the full number of the disciples and said, "It is not right that we should give up preaching the word of God to serve tables.
So the Twelve called a meeting of the disciples. They said, "It wouldn't be right for us to abandon our responsibilities for preaching and teaching the Word of God to help with the care of the poor.
3 Therefore, brothers, pick out from among you seven men of good repute, full of the Spirit and of wisdom, whom we will appoint to this duty.
So, friends, choose seven men from among you whom everyone trusts, men full of the Holy Spirit and good sense, and we'll assign them this task.
4 But we will devote ourselves to prayer and to the ministry of the word."
Meanwhile, we'll stick to our assigned tasks of prayer and speaking God's Word."
5 And what they said pleased the whole gathering, and they chose Stephen, a man full of faith and of the Holy Spirit, and Philip, and Prochorus, and Nicanor, and Timon, and Parmenas, and Nicolaus, a proselyte of Antioch.
The congregation thought this was a great idea. They went ahead and chose - Stephen, a man full of faith and the Holy Spirit, Philip, Procorus, Nicanor, Timon, Parmenas, Nicolas, a convert from Antioch.
6 These they set before the apostles, and they prayed and laid their hands on them.
Then they presented them to the apostles. Praying, the apostles laid on hands and commissioned them for their task.
7 And the word of God continued to increase, and the number of the disciples multiplied greatly in Jerusalem, and a great many of the priests became obedient to the faith.
The Word of God prospered. The number of disciples in Jerusalem increased dramatically. Not least, a great many priests submitted themselves to the faith.
The English Standard Version is published with the permission of Good News Publishers.
Published by permission. Originally published by NavPress in English as THE MESSAGE: The Bible in Contemporary Language copyright 2002 by Eugene Peterson. All rights reserved.