Reading for July 9, 2017: Acts 10:1-48
– For the disciples and the early church, it was pretty clear WHO WAS IN (the Jews – God’s chosen people – also known as Hebrews or as “the circumcised”) and WHO WAS OUT (Greeks, pagans, Romans/Italians, the uncircumcised — and everyone else! This group was collectively called Gentiles, meaning “not Jews.”)
– There were both unclean people (Gentiles) and unclean foods (camel, rabbit, pig, lobster, eagle, bat, and snake, to name just a few from Leviticus 11).
– “God Fearers” like Cornelius existed in the middle of “in” and “out.” They were non-Jews who went to synagogue but didn’t follow all the Jewish laws (specifically circumcision).
– And then… Peter’s vision changed all that!
– What happened next? See Acts 11 and 15.
– Notice that Peter needs the vision three times, just like when Jesus asked him three times “Do you love me?” in John 21:15-17.
– Centurions like Cornelius were Roman officers who led a group of 100 soldiers (like “century”). Jesus also met one in Luke 7:1-10.
Listen to the improv sermon based on this story & the congregation’s questions: