Improve your sermon prep with our brand new study tools! Learn all about them here.
Sermons

Summary: It appears that when the church leaders in Jerusalem had heard of Peter’s experience in Joppa at the home of Cornelius, they challenged his action and recalled him to Jerusalem for the purpose of justifying it.

  Study Tools

May 6, 2014

Commentary on the Acts of the Apostles

By: Tom Lowe

Lesson: III.D.7: Peter Defends Himself Before the Jerusalem Church (11:1-18)

Scripture (Acts 11:1-18; KJV)

1 And the apostles and brethren that were in Judaea heard that the Gentiles had also received the word of God.

2 And when Peter was come up to Jerusalem, they that were of the circumcision contended with him,

3 Saying, Thou wentest in to men uncircumcised, and didst eat with them.

4 But Peter rehearsed the matter from the beginning, and expounded it by order unto them, saying,

5 I was in the city of Joppa praying: and in a trance I saw a vision, A certain vessel descend, as it had been a great sheet, let down from heaven by four corners; and it came even to me:

6 Upon the which when I had fastened mine eyes, I considered, and saw fourfooted beasts of the earth, and wild beasts, and creeping things, and fowls of the air.

7 And I heard a voice saying unto me, Arise, Peter; slay and eat.

8 But I said, Not so, Lord: for nothing common or unclean hath at any time entered into my mouth.

9 But the voice answered me again from heaven, What God hath cleansed, that call not thou common.

10 And this was done three times: and all were drawn up again into heaven.

11 And, behold, immediately there were three men already come unto the house where I was, sent from Caesarea unto me.

12 And the Spirit bade me go with them, nothing doubting. Moreover these six brethren accompanied me, and we entered into the man's house:

13 And he shewed us how he had seen an angel in his house, which stood and said unto him, Send men to Joppa, and call for Simon, whose surname is Peter;

14 Who shall tell thee words, whereby thou and all thy house shall be saved.

15 And as I began to speak, the Holy Ghost fell on them, as on us at the beginning.

16 Then remembered I the word of the Lord, how that he said, John indeed baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost.

17 Forasmuch then as God gave them the like gift as he did unto us, who believed on the Lord Jesus Christ; what was I, that I could withstand God?

18 When they heard these things, they held their peace, and glorified God, saying, Then hath God also to the Gentiles granted repentance unto life.

Introduction

Acts 11 describes how the church in Jerusalem reacted to the Gentiles in Caesarea and Antioch who had trusted Jesus Christ as their Savior and Lord. Having fellowship with Gentiles was a new experience for these Jewish Christians, who all their life had looked on the Gentiles as pagans and outsiders. Tradition said that a Gentile had to “become a Jew” in order to be accepted; but now Jews and Gentiles were united in the church through faith in Jesus Christ (Gal 3:26-28{1]).

It is surprising that in a short book Luke would devote so much space to the second recital of the conversion of Cornelius. This indicates that Luke considered this event one of the most important in the life of the early church.

Outline of Chapter 11

Lesson III:D:7: Peter Defends Himself Before the Jerusalem Church (11:1-18)


Talk about it...

Nobody has commented yet. Be the first!

Join the discussion