No favoritism and no discrimination

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Peter told them, “You know it is against our laws for a Jewish man to enter a Gentile home like this or to associate with you. But God has shown me that I should no longer think of anyone as impure or unclean. Acts 10:28

Peter is beginning to realize that Jesus coming to earth was the fulcrum of history. That for the entire Old Testament, God was primarily working with his chosen people, the Jews. This was because the savior of the world was coming through them and God had many things He wanted to teach and illustrate through the time recorded as the law and the prophets. But in the fulness of time, what all history was waiting for — the coming of the Messiah — came, and now everything has changed. God is no longer keeping Himself for one line of people and their descendants, He is now turning His attention to all people, all tribes and all nations. His Son is truly the Savior of the world. The new Jewish Christians are going to have to go through a major transformation in their thinking and their actions towards non-Jews, and it’s going to start with Peter.

An angel appears in a dream to a God-fearing Roman army officer named Cornelius, and tells him to send for Peter. Meanwhile Peter is also having a vision in which the Holy Spirit is telling him to arise, kill and eat all sorts of animals forbidden in the Jewish laws and traditions. “Do not call something unclean if God has made it clean,” he is told, and immediately following this vision, servants of Cornelius show up to bring him to Cornelius’s house. Peter gets the point, enters the home, an act formerly forbidden, and preaches to a crowd of Gentiles gathered there and they all believe and receive the Holy Spirit just as the Jews did at Pentecost. The transformation is complete. The gospel message is for all people everywhere. Then Peter replied, “I see very clearly that God shows no favoritism. In every nation he accepts those who fear him and do what is right” (Acts 10:34-35).

No favoritism and no discrimination.

History turned on this moment. Those of us who are Gentiles have been grafted into the family tree. There is hope for all people of all nations. This was huge, and it all started in the home of a Roman army officer. A transformation has occurred for those who know and love God. The Jews largely rejected the Savior so that He could be offered to the world, and Gentiles like me are so grateful, but also respectful of those who brought this gift to me, through whom the gift has come.

For those who wonder what happens to people who grow up in countries where other religions are all they hear about, this statement has meaning: In every nation He accepts those who fear Him and do what is right.

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5 Responses to No favoritism and no discrimination

  1. John Muys says:

    Hi John, If what you say is right then why do we preach that Jesus is the only Way. Moslems fear God and do what they understand to be right are they also ‘SAVED?’

    • Mark D Seguin says:

      Looking forward to reading Pastor John’s reply to that excellent question; although, my answer is please tell me the verse that gives me the right to say who is and who is not saved?

      • John Muys says:

        As recorded by John Jesus said “I am the Way the Truth and the Life no one comes to the Father except through Me” John :14 v 6. Paul writes to the Romans as recorded in Chapter 10 V 9 & 10 “That if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead you will be saved” Paul then goes on to explain this view further. Salvation can only come through being ‘Born Again’ as Jesus said to Nicodemus in John chapter 3. Jesus is very specfic.

    • John A Fagliano says:

      What it means when we say “Jesus is the only way” is this: Forgiveness comes only through His death and resurrection. He is the lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world. Yes, that means the whole world. What I say may sound heretical to some but I actually don’t believe one has to be a Christian to be saved as opposed to being a Muslim, Hindu or anything else. Consider the last verses of Matthew 25. Jesus talked of gathering the gentiles (nations) of the world and rewarding some of them based on how they treated Him. They will ask “When did we see You hungry and feed You”… etc… They won’t know the answer because they have not read Matthew 25. Their lack of knowledge about this will not prevent them from being rewarded. Also Jesus said that if someone gives you a cup of water because you are a disciple that person will not will not lose his or her reward. Notice how the one who gives the water is not being called a disciple as well. So why preach Jesus is the only way? Because it’s true. People are way better off knowing the truth about Jesus and receiving the Holy Spirit than to not be so blessed! Of course those who believe in Jesus are saved and Yes we must be born of the Spirit, but the Spirit blows where it pleases.(John 3:8) So I agree with John Fischer’s take on what Peter said about those who fear Him and do what is right.

  2. “It always pays to look at the world with eyes of mercy.
    See the good in others, even in those who seem so far from God. When we look at others through the lens of mercy, God will look at us in the very same way.”
    ~ Rabbi Yechiel Eckstein

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