Minister of Education Reports
The tenth chapter of Acts goes to the heart of a problem that afflicts some people in Christendom today. In Peter’s day there was a problem of Jewish prejudice against Gentiles and in our modern day there is a problem of Gentile prejudice against Jews.
Peter, the unlettered fisherman who had more recorded trouble with prejudice against Gentiles than any other disciple, was chosen to receive a particular revelation. During his prayer time while visiting at the house of Simon the tanner, he fell into a trance. During that time he saw a great sheet let down from heaven filled with all manner of animals. A voice he recognized as the Lord’s told him to “kill and eat.” But Peter refused avowing that he had never violated the Law of Moses by eating things that were common or unclean. The vision was repeated three times.
Afterwards Peter wondered about the meaning of what God had revealed to him. He did not know at the time that God had already spoken to a gentile centurion named Cornelius and he had sent his servants to Joppa to seek out Peter. But when Peter was taken to meet Cornelius he understood that God is no respecter of persons; But in every nation he that feareth Him, and worketh righteousness is accepted of him. (34-35)
Sometimes we seem to forget that the Gospel was to the Jew first and then to the gentiles. It has been for the sake of non-Jews the hearts of the Jews were hardened, and the nation of Israel required to suffer for a time. This is precisely what the word of God teaches. Unfortunately today some gentile believers seem to act as if Jews have no hope and no part in salvation during this age. That idea is totally false.
Christian gentiles should take the matter of Jewish evangelism seriously. As a matter of we should see the need to carry the Gospel of Jesus back to the Jewish people as a matter of a debt we owe to them. The Apostle Paul saw himself as a debtor and unabashedly said so, and so should we. There are those who are critical of attempts to reach the Jewish people or any other people for that matter. But let us consider this. There is someone who has a strong interest in people not hearing the Gospel. His names are Satan, Lucifer, that Old Serpent, etc. When people are opposed to evangelism, be it to the Jews or another, they are serving the devil, no matter who they are.
We should resist the historic repetition of resistance to bringing the Gospel to Jews or any other peoples.
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