Sunday, November 4: Lord of All
The Judeans were rascals who claimed that their God was the only true god and that the Roman pantheon was nothing but idols made by human hands. And because these people believed that the only true God was on their side, they were prone to revolt. Cornelius’ job was to discourage that by any means necessary.
But a funny thing happened to Cornelius in Judea. As he rubbed shoulders with the Jewish people, he learned about their God and he was intrigued. He found the teachings of Moses to be more compelling than Greek philosophy, and the Jewish God was certainly more ethical than those of the Romans. Sometime during his post in Judea, he decided that the Jewish God was the true God.
And so, he took up prayer. He gave alms to the poor. He did his best to live the life that God wanted him to live. But he had one problem: he wasn’t Jewish. And because he wasn’t Jewish, he was unclean. And he learned that a holy God cannot dwell with the unclean. So Cornelius was left on the outside.
Then one day, he was praying, and an angel appeared to him and said, “Cornelius. God has heard your prayers. There is this guy named Simon Peter hanging out in Joppa. Go get him.”
And through this man Cornelius, the church was changed forever.