Acts 11 – To the Ends of the Earth

Read Acts 11

In the opening of Acts, Jesus tells His followers they would be His witnesses.  He spoke of a series of expanding concentric circles which they would be ministering in.  It only takes us 10 chapters to move out from the center to “the ends of the earth.”  And it only takes us 11 chapters to see resistance from within when it comes to ministering to those on the “outside.”

Yet Peter has no hesitations about his explanation, speaking clearly about the vision God showed him.  Those who heard him were quick to believe too.  I often wonder if we would be so quick to believe Peter if this happened today.

To me, it is interesting how closely this mirrors some contemporary issues that my denomination has and is facing.  While Peter received this message from the Lord, and those who heard him believed this message, it was slow to be implemented throughout the Church at that time.  This has been the case for us as well.  As we have struggled with different issues (women severing in leadership, children at the Lord’s Table, etc.), leaders have seen a clear message from God in Scripture that reveals to us an inclusion and an openness that welcomes God’s people and their gifts.  However, the churches of the denomination have been slow to respond.  Acts 11 shows us that we aren’t the only ones to struggle with this though, to support something verbally while reject it in practice.

This chapter, however, also gives us hope that as the Holy Spirit continues to move through the Church, building her up and molding her into the true bride of Christ, we will see more of this lived out in our actions; a testimony of God’s love and the anointing of the Holy Spirit on all who believe.


Leave a Reply