Jan 28, 2018
Today, we’re covering a longer-than-normal section of Scripture: Acts 1017-43. It involves the sequence of events that followed Peter’s rather bizarre vision of the sheet filled with unclean animals. Now, God is going to provide Peter with a real-life application of what that vision had meant. Peter is invited to the home of Cornelius in Caesarea, where he will be given an opportunity to treat that which he had long held in disdain: Gentiles, with respect, and extend to them the gospel of Jesus Christ. God was opening the doors to the unclean and the unworthy. But those descriptions were not to be reserved for just Gentiles. The truth of the matter was that all men and women stand before God as unclean and unworthy. All our best deeds done with the best of intentions are nothing but filthy rags in God’s eyes. A right standing with God is not based on human effort or any form of earned merit. God had extended His grace to Peter and the rest of the apostles. Now He was going to extend it to Cornelius and his household. The gospel was good news to all people, not just to the Jews. Jesus was the Savior of all mankind, not just the people of Israel. Salvation was a free gift, offered by God to any who would accept it, not to those who had somehow earned or inherited it. Peter’s dream had initially been a nightmare to him, but now he was going to see that God’s vision for the redemption of mankind was all-encompassing and non-discriminatory.