Summary: When we least think that God is on the move, we find that He was there all the time intervening and helping us.Just because we cannot see it, does not mean He is silent.
Divine Encounters with God
Last week we looked at getting ourselves in the presence of God and allowing Him to intervene in our lives.
Worship can put in the presence of God as we enter into His presence.
Those that seem to encounter God have either been intentional or God had something to say and they are obedient.
The constant danger is wither we will respond or recognize God trying to get our attention.
We make choices- good ones pay dividends and poor ones consequences.
Let me set up scripture this morning as we continue to look at God intervening in lives.
Most think God still speaks, just not them.
Most believe that God does miracles, but not for anyone they know.
Acts chapter 10 is about two people that God spoke too and how they responded.
The text is really about three chapters long so let me set it and then we will talk about the takeaways learned.
In Caesarea there is a man named Cornelius.
He is a Centurion soldier with a lot of people working under him.
The Scripture says that he was a God fearing man that was generous to those that were in need.
One day while he was in prayer he had a vision. The vision was an angel of the Lord coming to him and saying “ that his prayers and gifts to the poor have come up as a memorial before God.”
He was instructed to send some men to Joppa and bring back a man named Simon who is called Peter. He is staying with a man named Simon, the tanner by the sea.
Cornelius, being a man of God did as he was instructed.
He send two servants and one of his soldiers to go find this man Peter.
The next day these men went to Joppa to find Peter. Peter was a hard man to find but when they found him, he was up on his roof praying.
Peter up on his roof praying became hungry and was waiting for food to be prepared and as he was praying had a vision.
His vision was heaven opening up and something like a large sheet fell from the sky with all kinds of animals on it.
Then he heard a voice that said… “Get up Peter, kill and eat”.
He was hungry and God was providing food for a man that was praying and hungry.
One problem, Peter saw unclean things being offered to him to eat that any good practicing Jew would not eat or even touch.
Surly notLord! I have never eaten anything impure or unclean.
While Peter was being a good Jew and praying at noon- these men from Cornelius house come and are asking around for Peter. Peter while sorting out all these things. God spoke to Peter and told him men would be coming to him and that he was to go with these men
These men introduction went something like this.
Peter asking them why are you here? The men of Cornelius house saying that God showed him a vision. He is a God fearing man and respected by many and he was told by a holy angel to come to you and you are to go to his house and that you have words to say to him.
Peter goes to his house and they have a conversation.
So forget the conversation they had for a moment-
What can we learn from these two people coming together?
Who had heard from God separately that they were ordained of God to meet.
Cornelius a Roman soldier who knew God but didn’t have a relationship with God was praying seeking God and was instructed to meet up with Peter the apostle and listen to what he has to say to him.
There is a turning point here!
Unsaved Gentile Cornelius and his family seeking God and God sending Jewish Peter to answer his prayer.
Peter praying and God showing him this blanket of animals including animals that Jews don’t eat or touch.
Peter being told by God himself in that vision that he has no right to call unclean anything that God has purified.
Jews were not to socialize with Gentiles.
They were not to go to their houses and for sure they were not to share a meal with them.
Turning point for relationships
Turning point for the church.
There was a book out many years ago called “Tipping point,” written by Malcolm Gladwell- it was a book about why there are some things that take off and others things not- the tipping point of what was successful and what never took off. Why the hula hoop became so popular. Why pet rocks went crazy- who would had thought a rock in a box would sell millions.