Chapter 10 is one of the most important chapters
in the entire Book of Acts. It records the opening of
the door of faith to the Gentiles. Peter had used the
keys of the Kingdom given to him in Matthew 16:19 to
open the door of faith to the Jews (Acts 2), and the
Samaritans (Acts 8:14). He would now complete his
special ministry during this period of transition by
opening the door to the Gentiles (see Acts 15:6-11).
In this chapter we learn of the relationship
between the believers at Jerusalem and the Gentile
believers. We must note that this is not a race
prejudice, but rather a misunderstanding of the purposes
of God. The Old Testament had pictured an earthly
kingdom, with Israel blessing the Gentiles through the
reign of the Messiah, but the nation had rejected
Christ, and now the Gospel was being presented to the
Gentile nation for the first time. Both Jew and Gentile
stand condemned and can be saved only through faith in
Jesus Christ. Jesus told Nicodemus in John 3 that we
must have a personal relationship with Him and be born-
again in order to see or enter the Kingdom of heaven.
In the first part of our reading for today we
see the church at Jerusalem accepting the Gentiles. In
the middle part of chapter 11 we find the church at
Jerusalem encouraging the Gentiles; and then, in the
latter verses, we even find the church at Jerusalem
accepting aid from them. This can be a great lesson to
churches throughout our country today. Many of our
churches are involved in majoring on the minors who
forget that Christ wants His children to work together.
When an individual or church loses sight of the calling
to reproduce and preach the Gospel, and gets caught up
in jealousies, backbiting, and criticizing everyone
else’s work, there is something drastically wrong with
that individual or church. God has given us the Great
Commission, to go into all the world and preach the
Gospel to every creature. We can do this individually
and collectively, and we who are truly born-again
Christians should work together toward this end.
Fundamental Baptist Church has been called a soul-
winning church and this is what we believe it to be; but
we never want to be guilty of being too large or too
busy to help a brother in need, or to help another
church that is in distress. Fundamental Baptist Church
is what she is today because of the financial and
spiritual help of God’s people. I believe this lesson is
clearly given to us in chapter 11. We should, as
brothers in Christ, be a definite support and help to
our fellow Christians.
Also in today’s reading we find that the
disciples were called Christians first in Antioch. The
word “Christian” is a world-wide word today, and is
grossly misunderstood by many people. Church members are
called Christians, and good moral people are called
Christians; but God’s definition of a Christian is one
who has been born-again by the blood of Christ, and has
trusted completely in the death, burial, and
resurrection of Christ, and is now living a Christ-like
life. A Bible Christian is one who is Christ-like, and
one who has given his heart and life to serving Christ.
Are you that type Christian? Am I that type Christian?
This question would bear being asked to every person who
proclaims the name of Christ.