44 While Peter was still saying these things, the Holy Spirit fell on all who heard the word. 45 And the believers from among the circumcised who had come with Peter were amazed, because the gift of the Holy Spirit was poured out even on the Gentiles. 46 For they were hearing them speaking in tongues and extolling God. Then Peter declared, 47 “Can anyone withhold water for baptizing these people, who have received the Holy Spirit just as we have?” 48 And he commanded them to be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ. Then they asked him to remain for some days.
11:1 Now the apostles and the brothers who were throughout Judea heard that the Gentiles also had received the word of God.
Get happy Gentiles, this is your Pentecost. That was why this event was such a big deal. Until this very moment, there had only been scattered little rumors of this or that Gentile being fully accepted by Jesus Christ. Sure, He accepted them and talked to them all while He was walking around, but the Holy Spirit!
The Holy Spirit now came upon actual pork-eating, unclean Gentiles just like on Pentecost. There is no mention of fire but the tongues thing happened and Peter and the others with him were convinced that it was the Holy Spirit.
As we pray for lost causes, Cornelius’ household is here for our encouragement. Peter would have NEVER believed that he would have gone into this house, much less preached the Gospel of Jesus Christ to them…much less watch them believe and receive the Holy Spirit. This is unbelievable.
It’s so unbelievable, in fact, that word spreads fast and the news beats Peter back to Jerusalem. He didn’t rush back, though. He stayed among these Gentiles and continued to teach them.
So many encouraging points in here!
- Even when they had the Holy Spirit visibly in their lives, they still could grow and learn more from Peter’s teaching
- God wasn’t limited at all by who Peter thought could and couldn’t be saved.
- By obeying God and seeking out Peter, Cornelius and his people grew in a new direction in their faith and got saved
- By obeying God and putting aside his life-long prejudice, Peter got to carry the Gospel to completely new groups of people
Anybody can carry the Gospel to anybody. Anybody can get saved. Whoever has sinned needs it, and whoever has the capability to believe something can grab it.
You can get the Daily Bible Readings to your inbox via email every day by subscribing on our home page. Join the discussion on Facebook or Twitter.