For the Whole World
It’s very easy to rail against someone caught up in a certain sin until we personally know one of these people. It might be a close friend, or it might be a family member. Maybe we know someone who has a child who has gone astray. Maybe our own child has gone astray. And now all of a sudden when it is on our front porch, it isn’t the same. Now there is a face attached to the sin. And it is much more difficult to be so disconnected, austere, and sharp.
I am not suggesting the sin is any less a sin. But I am saying that when it is connected to someone we know, we suddenly see it a little bit differently. There is a little more compassion for that person, and we want to help instead of simply condemn him or her.
God called Peter and the rest of the apostles to take the gospel to the whole world—not just to the Jewish world. But after six years had passed, this new group of believers was pretty much staying within the confines of Judaism.
This was not God’s plan, because Judaism was pointing to the fulfillment of Jesus as the Messiah. Everything found in the Old Testament, including the animal sacrifices, was pointing to something yet to be fulfilled—and that something was Someone. Jesus did not come to do away with the law but to fulfill it. He did that at the cross and His resurrection.
May God help us to go where He wants us to go, to whom He wants us to go, with the message He wants us to bring. So many have not yet heard the gospel. May we be the instruments He would use to bring the gospel to them.