Week 42   Day 1


In the early church astonishing things

     were being done every day

but none more beautiful than

     what happened in this story

             about disciple Peter  

                     the Jew who obeyed God
                     rather than the local authorities 

            and Cornelius the God-fearing Gentile

                     a Roman military officer
                     possibly charged with keeping the peace


Peter took a journey out of his comfort zone

Cornelius invited this radical Jew into his home

           both were following some internal directives

each with a clear, fresh vision from God 
           which they acted upon in faith


Peter had never lodged nor gone to eat

     in the home of a Gentile 

Cornelius knew that the Jews don't



            or think like the people of Rome

neither one had any idea what to expect


When they talked 

     they discovered that God

     had spoken to both

     about their meeting   

They embraced

     in the love of Jesus 

God gave the Holy Spirit

     to all the Gentiles

     who were in the home

and the joy of the experience had no equal


The hardest part was for Peter

     to go back to Jerusalem

and try to explain what had happened

     to people who had not been there 

     who had never experienced

            anything like this

            ever in their lives.




                                 TWO OPPOSING WORLDS

A Galilean Jew and a Roman Gentile embrace with joy, in Jesus.

                                                   Acts 10


    1There was a man in Caesarea called Cornelius, a centurion

of what was called the Italian Regiment, 2a devout man and

one who feared God with all his household, who gave alms

generously to the people, and prayed to God always.  3He saw

clearly in a vision an angel of God saying to him, "Cornelius!"

    4He was afraid, and said, "What is it, lord?"  So the angel said
him, 5"Send men to Joppa for Simon whose surname is Peter. 

6He is lodging with Simon, a tanner, whose house is by the sea. 

He will tell you what you must do."  When the angel departed,

Cornelius called two of his servants and a devout soldier.  8He

explained all these things to them, and sent them to Joppa.

    9The next day, as they drew near the city, Peter went up on

the housetop to pray.  10He became very hungry and wanted to

eat; but while they made ready, he fell into a trance 11and saw

heaven opened and a great sheet bound at the four corners,

descending to him.  12 In it were four-footed animals, creeping

things, and birds.  13A voice said, "Rise, Peter, kill and eat."

    14But Peter said, "Not so, Lord!  For I have never eaten

anything common or unclean."  15A voice spoke the second

time, "What God has cleansed you must not call common." 

16This was done three times.  17While Peter wondered what

this vision meant, the men who had been sent from Cornelius

made inquiry and stood before the gate.  19The Spirit said to

Peter, "Behold, three men are seeking you.  20Arise and go

with them, doubting nothing; for I have sent them."

    24Cornelius had called together his relatives and close

friends.  25As Peter was coming in, 27he found many who

had come together.  28He said to them, "You know how

unlawful it is for a Jewish man to keep company with one

of another nation.  But God has shown me that I should not

call any man common or unclean.  29Therefore I came without

objection.  34 In truth I perceive God shows no partiality. 

35 In every nation whoever fears Him is accepted by Him."

    44While Peter was still speaking, the Holy Spirit fell upon

all those who heard the word.  45Those of the circumcision

were astonished, because the gift of the Holy Spirit had been

poured out on the Gentiles. 

    Then Peter answered, 47"Can anyone forbid water, that

these should not be baptized just as we?"  And he commanded

them to be baptized in the name of the Lord.
               This Bible passage was condensed from the NKJV

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