Changing the Hearts of Two Apostles – Acts 9-10

A lot happens in Acts chapter 9, but clearly the most important thing is that the man (Saul of Tarsus) who had ravaged the church and approved of the deaths of Christians (including that of Stephen) is converted. In fact, he is found  preaching in the synagogue and declaring that Jesus is the Son of God. This naturally amazed and bewildered a great many people. Such a turnaround in such a short time made a lot of people skeptical. It is the most significant conversion of the New Testament because Paul, as he came to be called, ended up writing the epistles that became most of what we call the New Testament.

English: Peter's vision of a sheet with animal...

English: Peter’s vision of a sheet with animals, from Acts 10; illustration from Henry Davenport Northrop, “Treasures of the Bible,” published 1894 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

In chapter 10, Peter has a vision that changes his life once again. The vision shows him that no animal is unclean, and Mosaic Law had demanded and that Gentiles, by extension, required a revision of his views. After he arrived at his house, Peter had told Cornelius of how the Spirit had pointed him toward their meeting. So then Cornelius told him of his vision, and that all present were commanded to hear what Peter has to say.  So then, Peter preached to them about the gospel of Jesus Christ.

There will be much more discussion about Gentiles in the kingdom of the Lord before the “Jerusalem Conference” of chapter 15, but Peter’s mind on the subject is made up already, it appears. In verses 34-35, he says “Truly I understand that God shows no partiality, but in every nation anyone who fears him and does what is right is acceptable to him.” And he finishes preaching with these words “all the prophets bear witness that everyone who believes in him receives forgiveness of sins through his name.”

 /Bob’s boy

Bible Reading Schedule for this month
Click links below to read or listen to audio of one of this week’s chapters in Colossians and Luke

Acts 8, Acts 9, Acts 10, Acts 11, Acts 12

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some images © V. Gilbert & Arlisle F. Beers

Please visit this site’s menu item “The Author’s Books” for info on the author’s books, website, and Facebook page.

All of my comments in this blog are solely my responsibility. When reading any commentary, you should always refer first to the scripture, which is God’s unchanging and unfailing word.

 

 

 

 

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Cornelius the Centurion – Acts 10

Historical re-enactor wearing replica equipmen...

Historical re-enactor wearing replica equipment of a late 1st-century centurion (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Note: Beginning 09/02/14, this blog will be published on Tuesdays and Fridays

Chapter 10 opens with a bit about Cornelius of Caesarea.  He was a Gentile soldier in an Italian cohort — a centurion. A cohort could be as large as from 600 – 1000 men, with 6 centurions in charge. A centurion was paid anywhere from 5 to as much as 20 times as much as the average Roman soldier, so Cornelius was likely considered wealthy. Identified in several verses as a God-fearer, he would have been attached to a synagogue and a believer in God, but not circumcised.

In verse three, an angel came to him in a vision, telling him to send people to Joppa to have Peter brought to him. Peter had stopped in Joppa where he had raised Tabitha from the dead. Afterward, he had stayed with a man named Simon who was a Tanner that lived by the sea. Cornelius sent two of his servants and one of the soldiers who attended him personally. Verse 7 says that the soldier was “devout.” Undoubtedly, this was due to some extent, to the influence of Cornelius.

(This year’s reading plan for Luke, Acts, and 1 and 2 Chronicles averages just 15 verses per day – 5 days per week!)
Schedule for this week

Read or listen to audio of today’s selection from Acts here
Read or listen to audio of today’s selection from 2 Chronicles here

/Bob’s boy
___________________

some images © V. Gilbert & Arlisle F. Beers

Please visit this site’s menu item “The Author’s Books” for info on the author’s books, website, and Facebook page.

All of my comments in this blog are solely my responsibility. When reading any commentary, you should always refer first to the scripture, which is God’s unchanging and unfailing word.