Acts 11:1-18; John 10:1-10
We are all impacted by the giving or receiving of a Gift. A gift is defined as something given voluntarily without payment in return, as to show favor toward someone, honor an occasion, or make a gesture of assistance; present. It brings a good feeling to know that someone is thinking of your well-being. No matter how big or small, expensive or inexpensive the gift may be, none compares to the greatest gift given by God, and that is Salvation.
In Acts 11:1-18, we find Peter feeling the need to explain or expound to the church leaders why he invited and shared the Gospel with Cornelius and his friends, who were Gentiles, into the church. Peter began to share a vision given to him which resembled a large sheet coming down from the sky by its four corners. In the sheet, Peter observed four-legged animals of the earth, the wild beasts, the reptiles, and the birds of the sky. Then he heard a voice say ‘Get up, Peter. Slaughter and eat’, but Peter responded by saying, ‘Certainly not, sir, because nothing profane or unclean shall enter my mouth.’ God’s response to this was, ‘What God has made clean, you are not to call profane.’ The vision also showed Peter three men who were uncircumcised, that showed up at the place of worship. The spirit told Peter to invite them into the worship without any discrimination or reservation. This was a joyous moment because it gave the Unbelievers the same opportunity of receiving the Gift as those that already believed.
Psalms 42 expresses the great desires of David to show his true love towards God. It is when he was debarred from his outward opportunities of waiting on God, when he was banished to the land of Jordan, a great way off from the courts of God’s house. Note, Sometimes God teaches us effectually to know the worth of mercies by the want of them, and whets our appetite for the means of grace by cutting us short in those means. When we have plenty, we sometimes forget what it means to be in need. We must enjoy his Gift while we can.
In John 10, the parable shows the evidence of a thief and robber that comes to do mischief to the flock and damage to the owner. He enters not by the door, as having no lawful cause of entry, but climbs up some other way, at a window, or some breach in the wall. How industrious are wicked people to do mischief! What plots will they lay, what pains will they take, what hazards will they run, in their wicked pursuits! This should shame us out of our slothfulness and cowardice in the service of God. God is our Shepherd, and those that believe are his sheep, and they know his voice.
God has given us a gift for a purpose, and that is that we all come into the right relationship with him. Our thirst for his righteousness should be so strong, that our walk and talk should be evidence of our true Love for God, and people from all walks of Life will come running and asking what must we do to receive this wonderful Gift of Salvation.
By Robert Berry