At times God’s plan and agenda doesn’t jive with ours. This study sets forth how we naturally respond and how the Lord leads us to embrace His agenda and plan.
Here are several lessons we learn from this important chapter in the life of the early church.
- God saves sinners (insiders and outsiders) by His gracious initiative alone. These sinners have their sins forgiven. They receive the Holy Spirit. They are baptized and welcomed into God’s family on equal terms. “The case of Cornelius is so manifestly one of grace reigning in every stage of his story, that we can hardly doubt that this was just the feature of it which they meant here to express. And this is the grace that reigns in every conversion.” – The People’s New Testament
- Since God doesn’t make distinctions in his new society the church, we have no liberty to make them either. The gospel of Jesus Christ is not only for “insiders” but also for “outsiders.” On one level, we can easily affirm this truth. And yet, practicing it may not come as easily as believing it. For example, Peter had a bad relapse in Antioch that is recorded for us in Galatians 2:11ff. The sin of discrimination has kept reappearing in the church throughout her history. This is blasphemy to God and is offensive to Him because He accepts without discrimination all who repent and believe the gospel. So should we!
- Let us not undervalue or overlook the role of the Holy Spirit and His work today.
- The importance and necessity of conversion… Devout, God-fearing, generous, praying, and religious people must hear the gospel, repent, and believe on the Lord Jesus.