Life for the Gentiles

And the apostles and brethren that were in Judaea heard that the Gentiles had also received the word of God.  And when Peter was come up to Jerusalem, they that were of the circumcision contended with him, Saying, Thou wentest in to men uncircumcised, and didst eat with them.  But Peter rehearsed the matter from the beginning, and expounded it by order unto them, saying…

When they heard these things, they held their peace, and glorified God, saying, Then hath God also to the Gentiles granted repentance unto life.

Acts 11:1-4, 18

When Peter came back to Jerusalem, the Jewish Christians there immediately questioned him about associating with and eating with Gentiles.  Peter was ready for this questioning and immediately responded by telling them in verses 5-17 what the Lord had told him and showed him and how the Lord had offered salvation to the Gentiles as well.  Their response is important for us to observe: “When they heard these things, they held their peace, and glorified God, saying, Then hath God also to the Gentiles granted repentance unto life.”

They were angry, but they heard Peter out, payed attention to what he was saying, and thought about it before responding.  And when they did respond, they were able to respond in the proper manner.  It is important for us to do these things.  Sometimes we get angry with someone and we refuse to listen to their side of the story.  Sometimes we have our minds made up and we refuse to allow them to be changed.  Think of what these men would have missed had they rejected Peter for eating with Gentiles.  They would have missed a huge blessing and a huge part of God’s plan.  But instead, they heard him out and let the Lord speak to them on the matter.  That is something we could stand to do a little more of ourselves!

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