The Preparatory Work of the Lord
As the Lord prepared Ananias for Saul and Saul for Ananias, (Acts 9:10-12) so here in our context He prepares Cornelius and likewise prepares Peter for ministry. So often is it the case that great success in evangelism comes to us not before the Lord does the preparatory work in the heart of the unconverted. He prepares both the one who receives the gospel message along with the messenger.
Key word – “certain” 35 times
The longest account regarding the conversion of one man.
Peter did some preparatory work for Paul – (Lenski)
Who is he?
Centurion’s in Scripture have a good reputation – Matt. 27:54; Mk. 15:39)
His faith –v.2
Was Cornelius a regenerate man? – Isa. 65:1;
C. Cornelius’ seeking heart
He prayed at the ninth hour – v.3 cf. Acts 3:1
He had an extraordinary vision and encounter with an Angel.
He had an Angel speak to him – Acts 4:12
He is instructed by the angel to meet up with Peter – v.22; I Pet. 1:12
Peter’s Vision – v. 9-20
God’s sovereign call – Jer. 1:5; ( Isa. 49:1,2; Gal. 1:1) John15:16
Dietary Regulations – Lev. 20:25-26
Peter’s resistance – v.14,15
What we learn from this:
Negative – This signifies the abolishing of the Old Testament dietary restrictions – (I Tim. 4:1-5; Rom. 14:1-3; Col. 2:16-17(
Positive – It signifies the inclusion of the Gentiles – v.16
Peter’s Meeting with the Messengers – v. 17-23
Submissive Will – v. 19, 20
Hospitality – v.21; I Pet. 4:8,9; Heb. 13:2
Peter’s Journey to Caesarea –v. 24-33
Cornelius waiting with great anticipation
Misguided worship – 25-26
Paul and Barnabas experience with pagans who sought to worship them –Acts 14:8-18
Even angels are not to be worshiped – Rev. 22:1-12 (Calvin comment on the Papacy. Lenski experience visiting St. Peter’s in Rome)
Peter interprets God’s revelation – v.28
Gentiles are no longer to be considered unclean.
Cornelius will follow whatever the commands are from the Lord Gk. Porstasso “military order”
Cornelius’ assembled friends and neighbors represent a model congregation in its attitude to God and God’s minister.
Pastor Nick Iamaio