August 26, 2012

Busting Barriers

Passage: Acts 10:1-28

Bible Text: Acts 10:1-28 | Preacher: Pastor Steve | Series: The Solid Acts of God
Acts 10:1 In Caesarea there lived a Roman army officer named Cornelius, who was a captain of the Italian Regiment
This Roman army officer was equivalent to a Navy Chief
Acts 10:2 He was a devout man who feared the God of Israel, as did his entire household. He gave generously to charity and was a man who regularly prayed to God.
Four significant character qualities are noted:
Devotion to God – commitment, obedience
God-fearing – Fear of the Lord
Generous giver – time, talent and treasure
Consistent in prayer – reading scripture
Acts 10:3-8 …three o’clock, he had a vision in which he saw an angel of God coming toward him. Cornelius! the angel said. Cornelius stared at him in terror. What is it, sir? …Your prayers and gifts to the poor have not gone unnoticed by God! Now send some men down to Joppa to find a man named Simon Peter. He is staying with Simon, a leatherworker who lives near the shore. Ask him to come and visit you…Cornelius called two of his household servants and a devout soldier, one of his personal attendants. He told them what had happened and sent them off to Joppa.
Acts 10:9-10 The next day as Cornelius’s messengers were nearing the city, Peter went up to the flat roof to pray. It was about noon, and he was hungry. But while lunch was being prepared, he fell into a trance.
Clean Versus Unclean
Leviticus 11…
clean – divided hoofs; chewing cud;
unclean – carnivores and all others not noted as clean
clean – all birds not listed as unclean;
unclean – birds of prey or scavengers
Clean Versus Unclean
Leviticus 11…
clean – none; unclean – all
Marine life:
clean – those with fins and scales; unclean – all others
clean – those of the grasshopper family;
unclean – winged quadrupeds
God is Busting through a Barrier
Acts 10:15-20 The voice spoke again, If God says something is acceptable, don’t say it isn’t. The same vision was repeated three times. Then the sheet was pulled up again to heaven. Peter was very perplexed. What could the vision mean? Just then the men sent by Cornelius found the house and stood outside at the gate. They asked if this was the place where Simon Peter was staying. Meanwhile, as Peter was puzzling over the vision, the Holy Spirit said to him, three men have come looking for you. Go down and go with them without hesitation. All is well, for I have sent them.
Acts 10:25-29 As Peter entered his home, Cornelius fell to the floor before him in worship. But Peter pulled him up and said, Stand up! I’m a human being like you! So Cornelius got up, and they talked together and went inside where the others were assembled. Peter told them, You know it is against the Jewish laws for me to come into a Gentile home like this. But God has shown me that I should never think of anyone as impure. So I came as soon as I was sent for. Now tell me why you sent for me.
Acts 10:34-43 …I’m sure you have heard about the Good News for the people of Israel — that there is peace with God through Jesus Christ, who is Lord of all…And no doubt you know that God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power…They put him to death by crucifying him, but God raised him to life three days later.
Then God allowed him to appear…and he ordered us to preach everywhere and to testify that Jesus is ordained of God to be the judge of all — the living and the dead… …saying that everyone who believes in him will have their sins forgiven through his name.
Interrupted by the Holy Spirit
Acts 10:44-46 Even as Peter was saying these things, the Holy Spirit fell upon all who had heard the message. The Jewish believers who came with Peter were amazed that the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out upon the Gentiles, too. And there could be no doubt about it, for they heard them speaking in tongues and praising God.
Busting the Barrier
Acts 10:46-48 Then Peter asked, Can anyone object to their being baptized, now that they have received the Holy Spirit just as we did? So he gave orders for them to be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ. Afterward Cornelius asked him to stay with them for several days.
What is the responsibility of the priesthood?
Exodus 19:5-6 Now if you will obey me and keep my covenant, you will be my own special treasure from among all the nations of the earth; for all the earth belongs to me. And you will be to me a kingdom of priests, my holy nation. Give this message to the Israelites. Genesis 12:1-3
1 Peter 2:9 Proclaiming to the world the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His wonderful light
A key mission of Holy Spirit is to bust down barriers that were SEPARATING and PREVENTING people from receiving the WORDS of SALVATION.
Peter’s heart and attitude change
Jewish leaders and their attitudes change
The Gospel is to be proclaimed, explained to ALL people
The message of Jesus is to go to the nations, it is to go out to EVERYONE

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