JESUS’ RECONCILIATION: Acts 10:1-48

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BIG IDEA

The simplest way to describe the reason for Racism, Classism, and Nationalism is this: We all want to have worth. So in order to get it we compare ourselves to others and find ways to convince ourselves that we have worth because we are better than they are. But the gospel of Jesus Christ destroys any hint of these things. Like Peter in Acts 10, in order to purge any hint of superiority in our hearts, we need to know and believe three major truths. First of all we need to know and believe that Jesus is Lord, not us (vv. 36). He is the high and exalted One. Secondly, we need to know and believe that Jesus saves by grace through faith, not by our works (vv. 38-46). Salvation is a gift bought by the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus. Lastly, we need to know and believe that Jesus makes us family—family with different races, classes, and nationalities. We were all of different bloodlines but now we are of one bloodline (the bloodline!)—the bloodline of the cross of Jesus Christ.

SCRIPTURE

ACTS 10:34-48 34 So Peter opened his mouth and said: “Truly I understand that God shows no partiality, 35 but in every nation anyone who fears him and does what is right is acceptable to him. 36 As for the word that he sent to Israel, preaching good news of peace through Jesus Christ (he is Lord of all), 37 you yourselves know what happened throughout all Judea, beginning from Galilee after the baptism that John proclaimed: 38 how God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power. He went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with him. 39 And we are witnesses of all that he did both in the country of the Jews and in Jerusalem. They put him to death by hanging him on a tree, 40 but God raised him on the third day and made him to appear, 41 not to all the people but to us who had been chosen by God as witnesses, who ate and drank with him after he rose from the dead. 42 And he commanded us to preach to the people and to testify that he is the one appointed by God to be judge of the living and the dead. 43 To him all the prophets bear witness that everyone who believes in him receives forgiveness of sins through his name.” 44 While Peter was still saying these things, the Holy Spirit fell on all who heard the word. 45 And the believers from among the circumcised who had come with Peter were amazed, because the gift of the Holy Spirit was poured out even on the Gentiles. 46 For they were hearing them speaking in tongues and extolling God. Then Peter declared, 47 “Can anyone withhold water for baptizing these people, who have received the Holy Spirit just as we have?” 48 And he commanded them to be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ. Then they asked him to remain for some days.

DISCUSSION 

1. Was there anything from the sermon, the big idea, or Acts 10 that stood out to you, challenged you, or confused you?

The simplest way to describe the reason for Racism, Classism, and Nationalism is this: We all want to have worth. So in order to get it we compare ourselves to others and find ways to convince ourselves that we have worth because we are better than they are.

2. Do you agree with this statement? Why or why not?

In order to defeat racism in our hearts…we need to know and believe that Jesus saves by grace through faith, not by our works (vv. 38-46). Salvation is a gift bought by the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus.

3. How does the gospel destroy any hint of Racism, Classism, and Nationalism?

4. Why does having Racism in your heart reveal that your faith may not be in Jesus’ grace but in your works?

GOOD WORD

You are not better than anyone—you’re so bad Jesus had to die for you. You are not worse than anyone either—you are so loved that Jesus was willing to die for you. The gospel of Jesus destroys all hints of racism.

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