Acts 10

Act 10:1Now there was a man at Caesarea named Cornelius, a centurion of what was called the Italian cohort,
Act 10:2a devout man and one who feared God with all his household, and gave many alms to the Jewish people and prayed to God continually.
Act 10:3 About the ninth hour of the day he clearly saw in a vision an angel of God who had just come in and said to him, "Cornelius!"
Act 10:4 And fixing his gaze on him and being much alarmed, he said, "What is it, Lord?" And he said to him, "Your prayers and alms have ascended as a memorial before God.
Act 10:5"Now dispatch some men to Joppa and send for a man named Simon, who is also called Peter;
Act 10:6he is staying with a tanner named Simon, whose house is by the sea."

When any man is faithful to seek to please God, He will be faithful to make the Way clear to them. Cornelius did nothing more than any good man is capable of. He had been watching the Jews and he had, likely read the Bible to seek the truth. This is the reason for us to live like we believe what we preach.

Act 10:7When the angel who was speaking to him had left, he summoned two of his servants and a devout soldier of those who were his personal attendants,
Act 10:8and after he had explained everything to them, he sent them to Joppa.

Worthy of note here is the fact that Cornelius did not just send anybody after Peter, no, he was careful to send people of a like mind so that he could trust them.

Act 10:9On the next day, as they were on their way and approaching the city, Peter went up on the housetop about the sixth hour to pray.
Act 10:10But he became hungry and was desiring to eat; but while they were making preparations, he fell into a trance;
Act 10:11and he *saw the sky opened up, and an object like a great sheet coming down, lowered by four corners to the ground,
Act 10:12and there were in it all kinds of four-footed animals and crawling creatures of the earth and birds of the air.
Act 10:13A voice came to him, "Get up, Peter, kill and eat!"
Act 10:14But Peter said, "By no means, Lord, for I have never eaten anything unholy and unclean."

Peter was a devote man and followed and kept the rules he had grown up with. Peter had walked with and was taught, proper, application of the Mosaic Law by none other than the LORD, Himself. But Peter was always brash and here I believe he knew the voice but was not sure that Jesus was not trying to trick him.

Act 10:15Again a voice came to him a second time, "What God has cleansed, no longer consider unholy."
Act 10:16This happened three times, and immediately the object was taken up into the sky.
Act 10:17Now while Peter was greatly perplexed in mind as to what the vision which he had seen might be, behold, the men who had been sent by Cornelius, having asked directions for Simon's house,appeared at the gate;
Act 10:18and calling out, they were asking whether Simon, who was also called Peter, was staying there.
Act 10:19While Peter was reflecting on the vision, the Spirit said to him, "Behold, three men are looking for you.
Act 10:20"But get up, go downstairs and accompany them without misgivings, for I have sent them Myself."

Jesus gave Peter the same vision three times before it sunk in. Peter was more like us than most are ready to admit and in spite of our, naturally, sinful nature, Jesus is faithful!

Act 10:21Peter went down to the men and said, "Behold, I am the one you are looking for; what is the reason for which you have come?"
Act 10:22They said, "Cornelius, a centurion, a righteous and God-fearing man well spoken of by the entire nation of the Jews, was divinely directed by a holy angel to send for you to come to his house and hear a message from you."
Act 10:23So he invited them in and gave them lodging. And on the next day he got up and went away with them, and some of the brethren from Joppa accompanied him.
Act 10:24On the following day he entered Caesarea. Now Cornelius was waiting for them and had called together his relatives and close friends.

Cornelius had so much faith in God that he had gathered his family and all his friends to listen what the man of God had to say to them. He wanted all that he cherished to be with him forever.

Act 10:25When Peter entered, Cornelius met him, and fell at his feet and worshiped him.
Act 10:26But Peter raised him up, saying, "Stand up; I too am just a man."
Act 10:27As he talked with him, he entered and found many people assembled.
Act 10:28And he said to them, "You yourselves know how unlawful it is for a man who is a Jew to associate with a foreigner or to visit him; and yet God has shown me that I should not call any man unholy or unclean.
Act 10:29"That is why I came without even raising any objection when I was sent for. So I ask for what reason you have sent for me."
Act 10:30Cornelius said, "Four days ago to this hour, I was praying in my house during the ninth hour; and behold, a man stood before me in shining garments,
Act 10:31and he said, 'Cornelius, your prayer has been heard and your alms have been remembered before God.
Act 10:32'Therefore send to Joppa and invite Simon, who is alsocalled Peter, to come to you; he is staying at the house of Simon the tanner by the sea.'
Act 10:33"So I sent for you immediately, and you have been kind enough to come. Now then, we are all here present before God to hear all that you have been commanded by the Lord."

Cornelius understood the natural order of things because he had lived in that realm, likely, all of his life. Although the Lost Man and most of those of us that claim the name of the Christ object, the Kingdom of God is not a democratic society. The Kingdom, rather, is much more like the military with a ruler that has absolute power over life and death, more so in the Kingdom than the Army ever thought to have. I feel that it is imperative that we learn this before we can, truly, understand worship.

Act 10:34Opening his mouth, Peter said: "I most certainly understand now that God is not one to show partiality,
Act 10:35but in every nation the man who fears Him and does what is right is welcome to Him.
Act 10:36"The word which He sent to the sons of Israel, preaching peace through Jesus Christ (He is Lord of all)--

Lord Lord, n. [OE. lord, laverd, loverd, AS. hl[=a]ford, for hl[=a]fweard, i. e., bread keeper; hl[=a]f bread, loaf + weardian to look after, to take care of, to ward. See Loaf, and Ward to guard, and cf. Laird, Lady.]
  1. One who has power and authority; a master; a ruler; a governor; a prince; a proprietor, as of a manor. [1913 Webster]

As Christians we must learn what Lord means. We can never show reverence by calling Jesus J.C., J.C. Is my brother-in-law and he cannot save himself, let alone me.

Act 10:37you yourselves know the thing which took place throughout all Judea, starting from Galilee, after the baptism which John proclaimed.
Act 10:38"You know of Jesus of Nazareth, how God anointed Him with the Holy Spirit and with power, and how He went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with Him.
Act 10:39"We are witnesses of all the things He did both in the land of the Jews and in Jerusalem. They also put Him to death by hanging Him on a cross.
Act 10:40"God raised Him up on the third day and granted that He become visible,
Act 10:41not to all the people, but to witnesses who were chosen beforehand by God, that is, to us who ate and drank with Him after He arose from the dead.
Act 10:42"And He ordered us to preach to the people, and solemnly to testify that this is the One who has been appointed by God as Judge of the living and the dead.
Act 10:43"Of Him all the prophets bear witness that through His name everyone who believes in Him receives forgiveness of sins."

Peter did not give some elaborate, well thought out sermon, he presented just the truth about the gospel. That is all of us have een called to do. Today it is popular for preachers to do elaborate outlines and virtually pre program what they are going to say. When a teacher/preacher does that they close the door on (quench) the Holy Spirit from speaking through them. If any lay person will surrender themselves to Jesus and seek to follow the leading of the Holy Spirit they can preach, perhaps not as eloquently, but just as effectively as D. L. Moody.

Act 10:44While Peter was still speaking these words, the Holy Spirit fell upon all those who were listening to the message.
Act 10:45All the circumcised believers who came with Peter were amazed, because the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out on the Gentiles also.
Act 10:46For they were hearing them speaking with tongues andexalting God. Then Peter answered,
Act 10:47 "Surely no one can refuse the water for these to be baptized who have received the Holy Spirit just as we did, can he?"
Act 10:48 And he ordered them to be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ. Then they asked him to stay on for a few days.

We do not see as much of this type of scriptural baptism today but it actually doesn't require a preacher to baptize a person. It does require a Minister of the Gospel and that will be any man following the Great Commission. (Matt. 28:18b-29)