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Acts 10 v 34 - 48

We only have the bare bones of what Peter would have said to Cornelius here. However, as with much of the sermon summaries in the book of Acts, it is clear that Christians today have moved a fair way away from the teachings of the Apostles. With our 'modern hats' on, it is a simple and understandable error for young believers to interpret the Bible as angry God pacified by a loving Jesus. Peter is emphatic that God sent Jesus: He is God's gift to humankind! The coming of Jesus to this world was due to the love of God and we cannot worship Jesus as Lord and Saviour without accepting the Father as full of love, doing everything out of the Spirit of love.

We also learn that Jesus desired to banish pain and sorrow from the world. He would have known that it was impossible, but just with us, He sought to do what He could...Mother Teresa: ''We ourselves feel that what we are doing is just a drop in the ocean. But if that drop was not in the ocean, I think the ocean would be less because of that missing drop.''

Thirdly, Peter emphasises that Jesus was crucified, rose again-conquering the worst that people could do to Him-and Christians are witnesses of the resurrection. Jesus is alive to those who believe, He is not simply a historical figure that we are attempting to give Him His rightful due, but is present with us.

The result of all this is forgiveness of sins and a new relationship with God. God reached out through Jesus Christ to restore the relationship of human and divine.

As Peter speaks, the truth of what He speaks about becomes clear through what is going on: The Holy Spirit comes upon Cornelius and his friends and they begin to speak in tongues, proof to the Jews present that God had given His Spirit to the Gentiles also. Those who believed were baptised immediately-no prior catechism teaching-and so were brought into the Church. Peter reported back to the Church in Jerusalem after all this had taken place.

These new believers pleaded with Peter to stay longer, so they could learn more about Jesus and God's good purposes. One of the marks of someone beginning to live in the Kingdom of God is a hunger to know more about Him.

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