[Peter continued his message to Cornelius and the others with him:] "And we apostles are witnesses of all [Jesus] did throughout Judea and in Jerusalem. They put him to death by hanging him on a cross, but God raised him to life on the third day. Then God allowed him to appear, not to the general public, but to us whom God had chosen in advance to be his witnesses. We were those who ate and drank with him after he rose from the dead. And he ordered us to preach everywhere and to testify that Jesus is the one appointed by God to be the judge of all — the living and the dead. He is the one all the prophets testified about, saying that everyone who believes in him will have their sins forgiven through his name."
— Acts 10:39-43 NLT
Peter moved from telling about Jesus in the previous verses (Acts 10:36-38) to sharing with Cornelius and the others what he had witnessed. The message Peter shared was beyond mere rational belief, yet he assured Cornelius that he witnessed the events himself. The things Peter shared with Cornelius were not rumors, myths, or exaggerated tales. Peter saw them himself and was staking his whole future on them. The prophets of Israel had foretold Jesus' coming and promised that faith in him would bring forgiveness of sins and a new life. Today, as we may sometimes struggle to believe the words Peter shared, we need to remember three truths:
- Peter gave his life to proclaiming this story of Jesus after having once been afraid and after denying him.
- Cornelius, a great example of the best of what Rome could offer the world, came to full faith in Jesus (Acts 10:44-48).
- Jesus' story has endured despite everything Satan and the world have tried to do to snuff out his message of new life.
One reason the Good News of God in Jesus is unstoppable is that goodhearted people searching for truth keep finding it in Jesus!
Tender Shepherd, thank you for being the God who does not leave one of your sheep behind — you go in search of the lost, wounded, and weary. I count myself as one of those sheep and rejoice in your finding me. Now, dear Shepherd, please use me to find other lost sheep. In Jesus' name, I pray. Amen.