God Shows no Partiality
Peter began to speak to (Cornelius and his household): “I truly understand that God shows no partiality, but in every nation anyone who fears him and does what is right is acceptable to him. You know the message he sent to the people of Israel, preaching peace by Jesus Christ—he is Lord of all. That message spread throughout Judea, beginning in Galilee after the baptism that John announced: how God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power; how he went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with him. We are witnesses to all that he did both in Judea and in Jerusalem. They put him to death by hanging him on a tree; but God raised him on the third day and allowed him to appear, not to all the people but to us who were chosen by God as witnesses, and who ate and drank with him after he rose from the dead. He commanded us to preach to the people and to testify that he is the one ordained by God as judge of the living and the dead. All the prophets testify about him that everyone who believes in him receives forgiveness of sins through his name.” ~ Acts 10:34-43
God shows no partiality.
How many times do we need to hear that before it sinks in?
Who is it that you wish God wasn't so partial to?
Who is it that you are being called to show partiality to?
There were plenty of reasons for Peter to think God wouldn't have any interest in Cornelius and his family.
Cornelius was a Gentile. And a Roman Centurion no less.
Peter thought that only Jewish people could become Christian. Peter's race was the chosen one.
It's something even us modern day Christians fall into the trap of: you aren't a proper Christian if you aren't Lutheran. Or Baptist. Or Catholic. Or Orthodox. Or Mormon. Or Methodist.
You aren't a proper Christian if you aren't baptized as an adult. Or if you don't practice Holy Communion in the right way. Or if you don't "accept Jesus as your personal savior."
Or any number of things we Christians have used to alienate ourselves from each other with.
Not to mention how we can alienate ourselves from those of other faith traditions (or no faith tradition).
But God knows no partiality. And I don't know about you, but that sure makes me feel very fortunate.
Lord, help me to be as magnanimous as you are with all of your children. Amen