Here we have the lesson of Cornelius, a Roman soldier … ”a righteous and God-fearing man well spoken of by the entire nation of the Jews”. Apparently he was a good man, a family man, moral and upright not unlike many “good” people today. You know the type…a fine law-abiding citizen, leads an admirable and respected life in the community, acknowledges there is a God and perhaps even goes to church on Sunday. You might say this person “checks all the boxes” when it comes to being a good “religious” person. Cornelius may have been that kind of guy, but an angel unexpectedly intervened in his life indicating he needed to heed an additional message beyond religion and social comportment. This was a message that would impact his eternity.
Peter and Cornelius were miraculously brought together through the leading of the Holy Spirit. Peter was that messenger to Cornelius and to those gathered with him. Peter repeated the Gospel Story … how Jesus was baptized, went about doing good and performing acts of miraculous healing. He was innocent of wrongful charges, hung on a cruel cross and died because of our sin. But He triumphantly arose conquering death on the third day, just as He had said He would. He was the One who was appointed Judge of the living and the dead. Then Peter cuts to the difference in believing “of” Jesus and believing “in” Jesus. For those that place their true believing faith “in” this Jesus, “receives forgiveness of sins” (v43). There is a difference. Many today have an intellectual knowledge of the person of Jesus and conduct their lives in admirable fashion. But to receive the saving grace of the forgiveness of our sins and to ensure our eternity will be spent with the True Judge of the living and the dead, our belief must be full, complete and solely in Him. Even if we can’t fully understand or grasp it. That is when our relationship with Christ moves from our head to our heart. And as with Cornelius, the Holy Spirit then takes up permanent residence within our hearts and lives providing strength, guidance and assurance.
The awesomeness of this message is that it is for all mankind…Cornelius the Roman, Peter the Jew … every ethnicity … they are all precious in the sight of Jesus. YOU are precious in the eyes and heart of Jesus. As Right From The Heart seeks to encourage folks to know the difference in acknowledging Jesus as a good man to being accepted as a personal Savior, make sure you have made that distinction in your own life. It just makes all things right!
Thank you for your support of Right From The Heart. I look forward to a productive year in 2020 in continuing to proclaim this best of all good news … a genuine saving relationship with King Jesus!
Founder, Right From The Heart Ministries
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