HOW TO BE SAVED:
Amen, to what Peter says in this verse! This, he said in response to the Gentiles officially being accepted into God's family through faith in Christ. And the event was confirmed through the giving of, immersion of, the baptism in God's holy Spirit. Cornelius and his household were born again, anew, fathered, begotten from above. Just like the Judeans were on Pentecost, as Jesus promised. According to Bible historians, Cornelius and his household being accepted by God was approximately 10 years after Pentecost. The Gentiles being justified by and through faith in Christ was somewhat shocking to the Judean believers. But they could not deny what had happened to Cornelius and his friends and family. And they could not deny all the Scriptures which foretold of this event. Peter being the important vessel God used to introduce this fact to the Judeans in Jerusalem. PAUL then became God's main ambassador to the gentiles. He was perfect because no one was more offensive and contrary to God than Paul. If God could save Paul, God could save the gentiles and offer all His promises to them through faith in His Christos Son. And indeed, God has done just that. Gentiles have an ADDITIONAL reason to worship, thank, and praise God the Father through Christ.
The two verses that came to mind while writing this were:
1. "Is God the God of Jews only? Is He not the God of Gentiles too? Yes, of Gentiles too," (Romans 3:29)
2. "Take notice, therefore, of the kindness and severity of God: severity to those who fell, but kindness to you, if you continue in His kindness. Otherwise you also will be cut off." (Romans 11:22)
Because, do you think that the knowledge of such an incredible act of God's love and mercy, and His bestowal of His Spirit to us through the death and shed blood of His SON is for nothing? After becoming witnesses of God's reality through the baptism in God's Spirit through faith in Christ, do we pretend nothing happened? Were we not indeed made a new creation? Should not all our thoughts and actions be carefully weighed through prayerful study of God's word? And should we not repent at the reading of His word and allow God's fire to burn away anything other than God's pure teachings? Should we not DO as PAUL teaches us gentiles? Did he not warn them straightly over and over, with tears? Did he suffer everything he suffered for nothing? Isn't this what God's Spirit is pressing upon you when you read His written word? I hope so. Otherwise, our hearts are still like stones. The new heart is needed for God to be able to sow His seed. The perfect soil for planting and growing. That needs to happen FIRST. THEN we can grow into the fullness of the stature of Christ, eventually. We must be born anew. Like the Judeans on Pentecost. And like Cornelius ten years later. And we must strive to do everything PAUL wrote to those who received the Spirit of Christ. As he said, "You, however, are controlled not by the flesh, but by the Spirit, if the Spirit of God lives in you. And if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to Christ." Romans 8:9
So what can we do to receive God's Spirit? We must first BELIEVE. And only through the unmerited, unearned gift from God can we have this faith. And how does one receive faith from God? Answer: “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” How then can they call on the One in whom they have not believed? And how can they believe in the One of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone to preach? And how can they preach unless they are sent? As it is written: “How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!” "So, Faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of Christ." Romans 10:13-15, 17
That's how you become saved, the gift of God opening your hearts to His gospel and His enabling us to endure to the end of our lives. And how does one become condemned? Jesus tells us through the book of John. During His incredible conversation with Nicodemus, He says, "Whoever believes in Him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe has already been condemned, because he has not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son. AND THIS IS THE CONDEMNATION: The Light has come into the world, but men loved the darkness rather than the Light, because their deeds were evil. Everyone who does evil hates the Light, and does not come into the Light for fear that his deeds will be exposed. But whoever practices the truth comes into the Light, so that it may be seen clearly that what he has done has been accomplished in God.” John 3
And there you have it. The direction from God. Go to Him for forgiveness. He will grant you forgiveness through His Son. One will only seek forgiveness if one feels sad about what they have done. And one feels bad because our sins separate us from God and His blessings.
At that time Jesus declared, “I praise You, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because You have HIDDEN these things from the wise and learned, and revealed them to little children [(those small in their own mind)]. Yes, Father, for this was well-pleasing in Your sight. Matthew 11:25-26
It's the lowly sinners who hear the message of God. If you feel sad for your sins, that's a blessing. Turn to God now and trust in Him for eternal life.
Here is a prayer I said when I was born again. Say it to God;
"My Lord and my God, have mercy on me, a sinner. I believe Jesus the Christ died on the cross and shed His precious blood for the forgiveness of all my sins. I believe Jesus raised from the dead and ascended into heaven and is now on the right-hand side of God listening to this prayer. I open up the door of my heart and I invite You in, Lord Jesus. Thank you, God, for saving my soul and I vow to serve you with all my heart which is the first and greatest commandment. Amen."
Written by Tommy Richards, to the glory of God the Father through His Anointed Son Jesus. Amen.