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Default Day 315: Acts 10-12 - 10-18-2016, 05:59 PM

Acts 10
Cornelius’ Vision
3 He saw in a vision evidently about the ninth hour of the day an angel of God coming in to him, and saying unto him, Cornelius.
Cornelius, an Italian centurion, was doing his thing. The bible doesn’t say if he was on duty or if enjoying his free time. We don’t know if he was talking to other people or alone. These things aren’t important. What is important is that he suddenly started to hallucinate and the hallucination inspired him to go find Peter.

7 And when the angel which spake unto Cornelius was departed, he called two of his household servants, and a devout soldier of them that waited on him continually;
8 And when he had declared all these things unto them, he sent them to Joppa.

Cornelius’ servants didn’t mind their boss sending them out with remarkably vague instructions to find some guy named Simon whose last name is Peter, staying somewhere along the water simply because their boss had a hallucination. He told them they were on a mission from God and that was that. Perhaps this was just how Cornelius always acted, or maybe it they didn’t want to lose their jobs because unemployment was a real problem. In any case, this is the kind of faith we should all have. No questions, no analyzing, just obedience.

Peter’s Vision
9 On the morrow, as they went on their journey, and drew nigh unto the city, Peter went up upon the housetop to pray about the sixth hour:
10 And he became very hungry, and would have eaten: but while they made ready, he fell into a trance,

There are a lot more God-given hallucinations back then than there are today. People have to be a little more discerning today because believers in false religions, homosexuals, babies, or even the wrong people in the wrong place at the wrong time get killed when people think their own hallucinations or strong thoughts are really from God, but the bible doesn’t say it was a problem back then like it is today. Like any trend over the years, it’s been overplayed, but back then it was legit.

11 And saw heaven opened, and a certain vessel descending upon him, as it had been a great sheet knit at the four corners, and let down to the earth:
12 Wherein were all manner of fourfooted beasts of the earth, and wild beasts, and creeping things, and fowls of the air.
13 And there came a voice to him, Rise, Peter; kill, and eat.
14 But Peter said, Not so, Lord; for I have never eaten any thing that is common or unclean.

Some people interpret this passage to mean from now on there is no need to keep a kosher diet, with the possible exception of future airline foods because it’s always fresher. Others interpret this passage in the context of Peter’s later declaration of calling no MAN unclean (Acts 10:28), which opens the Gospel to the Gentiles but does not revoke the dietary laws (Matthew 5:17). I like to think this vision hearkens back to Jesus’ promise that He would make the disciple fishers of men (Matthew 4:19), and what better way to a man’s heart than a hearty BBQ? God loves the smell of roasting flesh (Leviticus 3:16;17:6; Numbers 28:24; 27; 29:13; Ezekiel 16:19), and we were made in His image after all (Genesis 1:27).

19 While Peter thought on the vision, the Spirit said unto him, Behold, three men seek thee.

While Peter was standing there with his mouth open, trying to figure this all out, there was a knock on the door (Acts 10:17-18) and the Holy Spirit tried to snap him into action saying, “Peter, PETER! There’s someone at the door. They’re on a mission from God. Believe whatever they tell you.” (Acts 10:20)

21 Then Peter went down to the men which were sent unto him from Cornelius; and said, Behold, I am he whom ye seek: what is the cause wherefore ye are come?

Peter welcomes them by saying “I am the guy you’re looking for. What’s it to you?” They want Peter to come back with them because they are on a mission from God (Acts 10:22-23). Peter puts them up for the night and they all leave together in the morning to go preach to Cornelius, who may or may not be still hallucinating conversations with angels.

Peter and Cornelius Meet At Last
24 And the morrow after they entered into Caesarea. And Cornelius waited for them, and he had called together his kinsmen and near friends.

Cornelius has a regular old tent revival welcome set up for Peter (Acts 10:24), and makes Peter uncomfortable by falling to his feet and worshiping him. (Acts 10:25-26)

28 And he said unto them, Ye know how that it is an unlawful thing for a man that is a Jew to keep company, or come unto one of another nation; but God hath shewed me that I should not call any man common or unclean.

Peter also remembered what God said about shunning the unbeliever (Deuteronomy 17:7; 2 Chronicles 15:12-13), but he had just learned that God is inviting people to be Christian, even if they eat all kinds of food and would never skin their wieners like a good little Jew. And that’s a big game changer for the faith. And the world. Hallelujah!

30 And Cornelius said, Four days ago I was fasting until this hour; and at the ninth hour I prayed in my house, and, behold, a man stood before me in bright clothing,”

Cornelius apparently didn’t know this was a vision (Acts 10:3), and he thought the angel was really there. With no bleach in the Middle East and all that dust and silt in the well water, it’s no surprise that bright clothes caught him right off guard.

34 Then Peter opened his mouth, and said, Of a truth I perceive that God is no respecter of persons:

Technically, Peter doesn’t lie because this is just his perception, but he did forget that God respected Abel but not Cain (Genesis 4:3-5), and the children of Israel (Exodus 2:25;2 Kings 13:23-25).

42 And he commanded us to preach unto the people, and to testify that it is he which was ordained of God to be the Judge of quick and dead.
43 To him give all the prophets witness, that through his name whosoever believeth in him shall receive remission of sins.

Christians are commanded to tell everyone Jesus will damn every soul, man, woman, child, who fails to believe on Him for Salvation (John 3:18).

Acts 11
Peter Calms Some Angry Jews
11 And the apostles and brethren that were in Judaea heard that the Gentiles had also received the word of God.

The Jewish believers heard about all the commotion about roping in the non-Jews and wanted to know why the heck Peter invited them (Acts 11:1-2). The writer of Acts wants to make sure that just in case you weren’t paying attention to the last chapter, all the information you need is repeated (Acts 11:4-25).

16 Then remembered I the word of the Lord, how that he said, John indeed baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost.

A couple things to keep in mind here. First is that Peter is reiterating the fact that God has invented Salvation through Christ, not through the Law of Moses the Jews were so obsessed with. The second is that Salvation requires being baptized with the Holy Ghost. Water isn’t enough to do it. If your baptism didn’t take and you were not genuinely Born Again (John 3:3), you’d best make arrangements to do it again, and pray it takes for real this time.

17 Forasmuch then as God gave them the like gift as he did unto us, who believed on the Lord Jesus Christ; what was I, that I could withstand God?

The Jews were triggered by the Gentiles being invited, but Peter was said, “Who’s going to tell God He is either being inconsistent, or He screwed over the Jews for the last 400 years? You? Not me! This is the way it is from not on, boys. Get with the program.” And many did.

The Church in Antioch
21 And the hand of the Lord was with them: and a great number believed, and turned unto the Lord.
The same baptism of the Holy Ghost happened with others, and many Greeks gave up their homosexual ways to follow Jesus (Acts 11:19-20)
22 Then tidings of these things came unto the ears of the church which was in Jerusalem: and they sent forth Barnabas, that he should go as far as Antioch.

These stories spread, and now Banabas is off to convert even more people (Acts 11:23-24)

25 Then departed Barnabas to Tarsus, for to seek Saul:
26 And when he had found him, he brought him unto Antioch. And it came to pass, that a whole year they assembled themselves with the church, and taught much people. And the disciples were called Christians first in Antioch.

Barnabus finds Saul and the two of them plant churches. The first time the word “Christian” is used is in Antioch.

Acts 12
Peter Runs Away

3 And because he saw it pleased the Jews, he proceeded further to take Peter also. (Then were the days of unleavened bread.)

Jews have always delighted in the persecution of innocent, vulnerable, peaceful, loving, perfect Christians.

7 And, behold, the angel of the Lord came upon him, and a light shined in the prison: and he smote Peter on the side, and raised him up, saying, Arise up quickly. And his chains fell off from his hands.

An angel miraculously popped into the prison, presumably in response to the the prayers of the Christians at home, but we’ve seen God does things or doesn’t do things as it pleases Him so it’s inconclusive.

9 And he went out, and followed him; and wist not that it was true which was done by the angel; but thought he saw a vision.

Peter thought he was hallucinating, because who would expect an angel to literally appear when you need him most, but since the door was open and his shackles were off, he left anyway.

10 When they were past the first and the second ward, they came unto the iron gate that leadeth unto the city; which opened to them of his own accord: and they went out, and passed on through one street; and forthwith the angel departed from him.

No one else noticed the lighted angel, or if they did, they didn’t say or do anything about it. Peter got away.

13 And as Peter knocked at the door of the gate, a damsel came to hearken, named Rhoda.

Rhoda and other Christians had been holed up in John Mark’s house, praying for Peter. When Rhoda heard a knocking at the gate, she went to see who it was. Peter was saying something, probably whispering very loudly, “Hey! Guys! Let me in! Hurry! I broke out of prison and if they catch me they’ll chop my head off like they did James! Hurry! For the love of God! Open the door!” But Rhoda was so startled to hear Peter’s voice that she ran back into the house and told everyone Peter was outside (Acts 12:14).

15 And they said unto her, Thou art mad. But she constantly affirmed that it was even so. Then said they, It is his angel.

It’s his angel. They thought it was his angel. Perhaps angels were assigned to the Apostles back in those days and it was no surprise when an angel came knocking on the door from time to time, the bible doesn’t say. We just know Peter stood out there looking around frantically hoping the police don’t find him at the home of his friends. Not the best place to hideout after a prison break, but it is what it is.

17 But he, beckoning unto them with the hand to hold their peace, declared unto them how the Lord had brought him out of the prison. And he said, Go shew these things unto James, and to the brethren. And he departed, and went into another place.

They finally let Peter in, he explained what happened, and told them to tell James (not the dead one), and other Christians. Then he ran away.

God kills Herod
20 And Herod was highly displeased with them of Tyre and Sidon: but they came with one accord to him, and, having made Blastus the king's chamberlain their friend, desired peace; because their country was nourished by the king's country.

The Lord told Ezekiel that Tyre would be destroyed and exist no more (Ezekiel 26:14), but we can see that it was not destroyed. This means either He miraculously changed His mind, or He created an alternative reality, or both are true by divine logic even if it doesn’t jive with human logic (Isaiah 55:8-9). It doesn’t really matter in the long run.

21 And upon a set day Herod, arrayed in royal apparel, sat upon his throne, and made an oration unto them.
22 And the people gave a shout, saying, It is the voice of a god, and not of a man.

We don't know what the speech was, but we know it was powerful, and moving, and the crowd loved it so much they thought it was divine (literally).

23 And immediately the angel of the Lord smote him, because he gave not God the glory: and he was eaten of worms, and gave up the ghost.

God was not similarly inspired, and felt He should have gotten some credit. He killed Herod.
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Default Re: Day 315: Acts 10-12 - 10-18-2016, 06:58 PM

That is powerful testimony, Brother.

God judgeth the righteous, And God is angry with the wicked every day- Psalm 7:11
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