The Apostle Peter, Cornelius and Their Unity of Purpose
(Acts chapter 10, verses 17–33)
Last week when we left off at verse 16 of Acts chapter 10, the apostle Peter was having a vision while he was in prayer, and I made the point that his vision would not have occurred had he not been in a state of deep and reverent prayer. Using that as part of my closing remarks, I recall challenging all of you to bring your prayer lives up to Peter’s level. I will not hold it against anyone if they are not at that level as of yet, nor against those who have tried and have fallen short. This is common to everyone, so let’s not be discouraged when we miss the mark. We’re only human, so this is bound to happen from time to time. The main thing is to never give up, and to keep on trying no matter what! Because, some day we will all achieve this Spiritual goal together.
Part One of This Week’s Study Verses
This week as we move on to part two of Acts chapter 10, Cornelius of Caesaria is arriving at the home of Simon the tanner where Peter is staying just as Peter has come out of his trance (see verse 10 of chapter 10 from last week’s study). So let’s take up where we left off beginning at verse 17: “While Peter was wondering about the meaning of the vision, the Spirit said to him, ‘Simon, three men are looking for you. So get up and go downstairs. Do not hesitate to go with them, for I have sent them.’ Peter went downstairs and said to the men, ‘I’m the one you are looking for. Why have you come?’ The men replied, ‘We have come from Cornelius the centurion. He is a righteous and God-fearing man, who is respected by all the Jewish people. A holy angel told him to have you come to his house so that he could hear what you have to say.’ Then Peter invited the men into his house to be his guests. The next day Peter started out with them, and some of the brothers from Joppa went along.” (Acts 10, verses 17–23)
Let’s remember once again our lesson from last week, when Peter was told in his vision to “not call anything impure that God has made clean” (see verse 15 from last week’s study). In the context of Peter’s vision, ‘anything’ apparently referred to certain animals that were forbidden to be eaten by Jewish custom…