Daily Devotional 11-22-19

Changed Lives 
By Julie White

He was a devout, God-fearing man, as was everyone in his household. He gave generously to the poor and gave regularly to God. Acts 10:2

The early days of Christianity are exciting to me as I read about how God’s Spirit moved and how people’s lives were changed because of Him. Converts were pouring in from surprising backgrounds. Even non-Jews were responding to the Good News about Jesus. Among the first of these was a Roman captain, Cornelius. Because of all the violence, Roman soldiers had to be stationed throughout Israel to keep the peace. But most Romans, hated as conquerors, did not get along well in the nation. As an army officer, Cornelius was in a difficult position. He represented Rome but his home was Caesarea. During his years in Israel, he himself, had been conquered by the God of Israel. He had a reputation as a Godly man who put his faith into action, and he was respected by the Jews because he actively sought God, he revered God, he was generous in meeting other people’s needs, and he prayed.

When he prayed, God told him to send for Peter because Peter would give him more knowledge about the God he was already seeking to please. When Peter entered Cornelius’ home, he broke a whole list of Jewish rules! Peter confessed that he wasn’t comfortable, but here was an eager audience and he couldn’t hold back. He had no sooner started sharing the Gospel when God gave overwhelming approval by filling that Roman family with his Holy Spirit. Peter saw that he had no choice but to baptize them and welcome them as equals in the Christian church. Another step had been taken in carrying the Gospel to the whole world.

God speaks to us in remarkably different ways – through written scriptures, through the words of others, through circumstances and events. It is up to us to listen, to be perceptive, to be alert, and to take action.

What is God trying to say to you today through the examples of Peter and Cornelius?

Prayer: Thank you for not playing favorites God, and for sending Your Son because You love the whole world.