Daily Devotional: Day 150
“Then Peter opened his mouth and said: “In truth I perceive that God shows no partiality. But in every nation whoever fears Him and works righteousness is accepted by Him” (Acts 10:34-35, NKJV).
Peter made a life changing discovery when he visited the house of Cornelius to preach to him the message of salvation. Up to this point, the Gospel had been preached to only Jews and Samaritans. But in God’s plan, the Gentiles, too, were destined to become part of God’s Israel. Initially reluctant to go to Cornelius’ house, Peter finally changed his mind upon the prompting of the Holy Spirit. After listening to Cornelius’ account of the vision of the angel, Peter became convinced of the character of God regarding His election of people for salvation. Amazed, he declared, “In truth I perceive that God shows no partiality. But in every nation whoever fears Him and works righteousness is accepted by Him.” What can we learn from this passage?
First, God is no respecter of persons. For centuries, most Jews believed that salvation was their exclusive right based on their ethnic identity. But God reveals that He is interested in anyone who sincerely seeks the true God through repentance and righteousness (cf. John 16:7-11). That is what Cornelius did, and God accepted Him. God is not moved by our looks, our race, our ethnicity, our socio-economic standing, our education, etc. Peter least expected that God would appoint the Gentiles for salvation, let alone pour His Holy Spirit upon them. But that day, he discovered that God’s heart is big enough to welcome people of all nations who heed His voice.
Second, regardless of people’s prior religious background, if they seek the truth, God will reveal it to them and lead them to salvation in Christ. Cornelius was a Roman soldier, and not a Jew. But he sought the truth, and little by little, he realized that the true God was not to be found in idols, demonic ceremonies and rituals. God gave him all the help he needed and eventually opened to him the door of salvation. This is an important point for us Christians.
Consider the Bible passage in John 16:7-11. Through the Holy Spirit, God is reaching people of all nations and religions, convicting them of sin, righteousness and judgment. If anyone heeds His voice, God will lead him to Christ. We should, therefore, not rule anyone out (regardless of their current religion or lack of religion). God is actively at work among unbelievers to draw them to faith in Christ. Let’s pray that they will not resist the convicting voice of the Holy Spirit. Additionally, let’s reach out to as many unbelievers as we can, trusting that the Holy Spirit has gone before us to prepare the ground for the Word of God.
Have a blessed day, and may the Lord reveal His true nature to you! Amen.
For further study: Acts 11:1-18