Unstoppable! 'The Spirit Fell on Them!' — Acts 11:15-16

Thursday, June 24, 2021

"As I began to speak [to Cornelius, along with his family and friends]," Peter continued, "the Holy Spirit fell on them, just as he fell on us at the beginning. Then I thought of the Lord's words when he said, 'John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.'"

— Acts 11:15-16 NLT

Key Thought

Jesus promised his disciples that the power of the Holy Spirit would help them become witnesses to people all over the world (Acts 1:8). Luke emphasized that Jesus kept this promise, and made clear his acceptance of new groups of people, through the coming of the Holy Spirit.* At this God-designed intersection of grace and God-seeking Gentiles, once again Jesus poured out the Holy Spirit, this time on Cornelius, his relatives, and friends — all of whom were Gentiles. The Good News message included Jewish people from all over the world on Pentecost (Acts 2:5-12). Now, by showing his favor through sending the Holy Spirit, Jesus was leading his disciples to include non-Jews. One of the great functions of the Holy Spirit is to open new pathways for Jesus' disciples to reach people never reached. But, are we praying and expecting the Spirit to do that today?

* Notice that Luke emphasized the work of the Holy Spirit to show God's inclusion of Jews (Acts 2:1-39), Samaritans (Acts 8:4-17), Gentiles (Acts 10:1-11:18), and disciples of John the Baptizer (Acts 19:1-7) in salvation.

Today's Prayer

Lord Jesus, I ask that you pour out the Holy Spirit with power and guide us to the groups of people whose hearts are yearning to know the hope that is in Jesus. I pledge to you, O Lord, that I am waiting in expectation to do what I can to reach them with your love and grace. But, Lord, I believe that we need your help to awaken us to our opportunities and your promise to use us as witnesses. Amen.

Related Scripture Readings

  • Acts 2:33; Titus 3:3-7
  • Acts 1:1-10; Luke 11:13, 12:12

Comments

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Illustration

Illustration of Acts 11:15-16 NLT — "As I began to speak [to Cornelius, along with his family and friends]," Peter continued, "the Holy Spirit fell on them, just as he fell on us at the beginning. Then I thought of the Lord's words when he said, 'John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.'"

About This Devotional

Unstoppable! is a one-year devotional guide through the book of Acts. Each devotional consists of a scripture passage, a reflection and a prayer. The reflection opens up the day's scripture and shows how it challenges one to live for Jesus.

Unstoppable! is written by Phil Ware.

Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright ©1996, 2004, 2007, 2013, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.