DAILY DEVOTIONAL, THURSDAY, APRIL 4, 2019

ACTS 11:16

Then I remembered the word of the Lord, how He said, ‘John indeed baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit.’

 

PETER, HAVING BEEN ACCUSED OF FRATERNIZING WITH GENTILES, FOUND HIMSELF NEEDING TO DEFEND AND EXPLAIN HIS POSITION TO HIS JEWISH COUNTERPARTS.  

HE SHARED HIS VISION ABOUT THE CLEAN/UNCLEAN ANIMALS, WHICH GOD HAD SHOWN HIM, IN ORDER TO REVEAL HIS ACCEPTANCE OF ALL HUMANKIND INTO THE KINGDOM OF GOD, IF THEY BELIEVE IN THE SON OF GOD, AND CHOOSE TO FOLLOW HIM.

HE EXPLAINED TO THEM ABOUT HOW THE HOLY SPIRIT CAME UPON ALL THESE GENTILES  SPONTANEOUSLY, AFTER HAVING SHARED THE GOSPEL OF CHRIST WITH THEM. WHEN THEY REALIZED THAT GOD WAS IN FACT CONFIRMING THAT GENTILES, TOO, COULD RECEIVE SALVATION, AND RECEIVE THE HOLY SPIRIT, THEY ALL REJOICED. PETER ESPECIALLY REJOICED AS HE RECALLED THAT JESUS/YESHUA HAD SAID THIS VERY THING WOULD OCCUR – i.e., THAT PEOPLE WOULD BE BAPTIZED WITH THE HOLY SPIRIT, SPEAKING IN OTHER TONGUES JUST AS THE DISCIPLES THEMSELVES HAD.

THERE IS A LESSON FOR US HERE ABOUT NOT MAKING ASSUMPTIONS, PREJUDGING, AND THEREBY DISCOUNTING PARTICULAR ETHNIC, RELIGIOUS, OR OTHER PEOPLE GROUPS AND EXCLUDING THEM FROM HEARING THE GOOD NEWS. GOD WANTS ALL PEOPLE TO COME TO HIM. HE CARES NOT WHAT COLOUR, RELIGION, OR ETHNIC GROUP THEY BELONG TO. WE DO NOT HAVE THE RIGHT TO EXCLUDE, PREDETERMINE, OR JUDGE ANYONE ON THE BASIS OF OUR FLESHLY PREJUDICES.

© 2019 by Verna Crowther. All rights reserved.