Conflict and Courage


To All the World, November 25

Acts 10

Peter began: “I now see how true it is that God has no favourites, but that in every nation the man who is godfearing and does what is right is acceptable to him.” Acts 10:34, 35, N.E.B. CC 335.1

Peter ... was called by God to take the gospel to Cornelius.... CC 335.2

As yet none of the disciples had preached the gospel to the Gentiles. In their minds the middle wall of partition, broken down by the death of Christ, still existed, and their labors had been confined to the Jews, for they had looked upon the Gentiles as excluded from the blessings of the gospel. Now the Lord was seeking to teach Peter the world-wide extent of the divine plan.... CC 335.3

How carefully the Lord worked to overcome the prejudice against the Gentiles that had been so firmly fixed in Peter's mind by his Jewish training! By the vision of the sheet and its contents He sought to divest the apostle's mind of this prejudice and to teach the important truth that in heaven there is no respect of persons; that Jew and Gentile are alike precious in God's sight; that through Christ the heathen may be made partakers of the blessings and privileges of the gospel.... CC 335.4

It was with reluctance at every step that he [Peter] undertook the duty laid upon him but he dared not disobey.... As Peter pointed those present [Cornelius and his kinsmen and friends] to Jesus as the sinner's only hope, he himself understood more fully the meaning of the vision he had seen, and his heart glowed with the spirit of the truth that he was presenting.... CC 335.5

When the brethren in Judea heard that Peter had gone to the house of a Gentile and preached to those assembled, they were surprised and offended. They feared that such a course, which looked to them presumptuous, would have the effect of counteracting his own teaching.... CC 335.6

Peter laid the whole matter before them.... Convinced that Peter's course was in direct fulfillment of the plan of God, and that their prejudices and exclusiveness were utterly contrary to the spirit of the gospel, they glorified God, saying, “Then hath God also to the Gentiles granted repentance unto life.” 58The Acts of the Apostles, 132-142. CC 335.7