Cornelius the Centurion - Acts 10

Cornelius the Centurion

Acts 10:1-48

In the earlier chapters of the book of Acts all of the Christians were Jews.  Even though they met in private homes for fellowship, they participated in temple activities.  For example, in Acts 3:1 we find Peter and John going up to the temple to pray.  Later the apostles are preaching and teaching in the temple on a daily basis.  Acts 5:42.  In the previous chapter Saul was planning on arresting believers in the synagogues of Damascus.  Immediately after his conversion Paul preached Christ in the synagogues.  Acts 9:20.

One day the apostle Peter had a vision and visitors in that order.  With the vision a voice spoke, "What God has called cleansed you must not call common."  The visitors introduced themselves, and said, "Cornelius the centurion, a just man, one who fears God and has a good reputation among all the nation of the Jews, was divinely instructed by a holy angel to summon you to his house, and to hear words from you."  They spent the night at Peter's house.

The next day Peter went to Caesarea, and found Cornelius, his relatives, and close friends waiting for him.  When Cornelius met Peter, he fell at his feet and worshiped him.  The apostle lifted him up, saying, "Stand up; I myself am also a man."  He added, "You know how unlawful it is for a Jewish man to keep company with or go to one of another nation."  This statement helps explain the actions of the early Jewish believers, and their separation from Gentiles.  Through the vision that Peter had seen, he understood the message, that is, "that God shows no partiality."  Acts 10:34.

Peter preached the gospel to Cornelius, a Roman centurion, and those who had gathered in his house.  "While he was still speaking these words, the Holy Spirit fell upon all those who heard the word."  Why do you think that happened?  Like Jews who were saved, they believed in Jesus Christ.  Cornelius and company spoke in tongues and magnified God.  Because of this outward manifestation, Peter understood that "the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out on the Gentiles also."  Acts 10:44-46.

The apostle Peter "commanded them to be baptized in the name of the Lord."  Acts 10:48.  They were baptized after they had received the Holy Spirit.

This is a pivotal chapter in the book of Acts.  Peter learned that there isn't any partiality in the preaching of the gospel.  "To Him (the Lord Jesus Christ) all the prophets witness that, through His name, whoever believes in Him will receive remission of sins.Acts 10:43.  From the house of Cornelius the centurion we see the good news of Jesus Christ being spread abroad to Jews and Gentiles alike.  Praise the Lord!

 

Lord of the harvest, we realize that the field is the world.  Use us as laborers in Your service.  Continue to prepare hearts for the preaching of the glorious gospel of Christ.  Thank You for the convicting, life-changing ministry of Your Spirit.  In Jesus' name.  Amen!

 

Barnabas, Son of Encouragement - Acts 11 

 
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