Stephen's message was NOT received well at all. I guess the people did not fall asleep on him. What was it that provoked the violent reaction? He accused them of being like their fathers who killed the prophets and rejected the law. They perceived themselves to be on the other side, the good side, of the fence with Father Abraham. He skillfully moved from Abraham to rebellion. That's what gave it a punch. It didn't help that he told them he saw the exalted Jesus. They hated Jesus telling them he'd be there, too.
This is a very sad chapter. And, the ending is even more forboding and ominous introducing Saul. . .