Bible reading plan Bible reading plan

Was Peter racist?

26 June 2020

“…God has shown me that I should not call anyone impure or unclean.” Acts 10:28

 

Every one of us has prejudice resulting from our cultural upbringing and life experiences.

 

In Bible times, the Jews had racist laws requiring segregation from other cultures. Peter, being a good Jew, followed those laws all his life. By today’s Western standards, Peter would certainly be a racist.

 

However, God through divine revelation broke through Peter’s life-long racist thinking and showed him that God loves and accepts everyone equally, and he should do the same. For the first time in his life, revelation from God showed him he is no better than a non-Jewish person.

 

34 …“I now realize how true it is that God does not show favoritism 35 but accepts from every nation the one who fears him and does what is right.”

 

This doesn’t mean Peter was perfect in applying this new counter-culture revelation. For shortly after this, Paul calls Peter out publicly for being hypocritically prejudice – acting one way when he was with Gentiles; and then differently when Jews came from Jerusalem. Paul then says, even Barnabas, was led astray by these same pressures (Galatians 2:11-13).

 

Lessons we can learn from this week’s reading:

 

1) Separate from a revelation of God’s love for all, everyone has deep rooted cultural prejudice that cannot be ignored. To ignore them, will reduce our ability to reach people who are culturally different from us.

 

2) God’s ministers and His church are not automatically exempt from being prejudice.

 

3) Revelation of God’s love for all, and In Christ realities, displaces cultural prejudice.

 

4) Even after being born-again, filled with the Holy Spirit, and having revelation from God’s Word (like Peter), we still need to continually renew our minds with
God’s Word so we don’t succumb to prejudice behavior when faced with cultural pressures.

 

5) Like Paul, God may lead us to call out those whose prejudice behavior is contrary to the revelation they have of God’s love for all.

 

6) God can still use us in spite of our prejudice (like Peter). However, the more God’s revelation for all is big in us, the more He can use us (like Paul).

 

Personalize these lessons: How are you prejudice? What revelation from God’s Word has helped you overcome prejudice? Are your actions in alignment with God’s love for all people? Is there anyone culturally different you can reach out to today?

 

 

QUESTIONS:

 

 

Day 181 – (June 29)

Reading: Acts 9:1-22

 

Verse 17: “…the Lord-Jesus…has sent me so that you may…be filled with the Holy Spirit.” Post emoji’s that symbolize your experience if you have received the Baptism of the Holy Spirit like Paul did.

 

 

Day 182 – (June 30)

Acts 9:23-43

 

Throughout this reading several people are listed… Paul, Peter, Barnabas, Aeneas, & Tabitha. Also, several more are referred to even if not named – for example the Jews, the Church, the sick and poor, etc. Who in our reading do you most identify with and why?

 

 

Day 183 – (July 1)

Acts 10:1-23

 

Cornelius (and his entire family) were devoutly religious. I’m sure everyone who knew he and his family thought he was perfectly right with God and heaven bound. Although, God wanted more from him than religious observance. What did He want and why?

 

 

Day 184 – (July 2)

Acts 10:24-48

 

Verse 34-35 – “God shows no favoritism…but accepts people from every nation…” Peter and the Jews who came with him needed special revelation to overcome cultural prejudice and share the Gospel with this unreached family. Share Truth from God’s Word that inspires us to share The Gospel with others who are culturally different. [Read this week’s blog: “Was Peter Racist?”]

 

 

Day 185 – (July 3)

Acts 11:1-30

 

Peter’s actions in chapter 10 broke Jewish customs. He was a ‘law breaker’ and called to give account of his actions by the leadership. What lessons can we learn from Peter’s response?

 

 

Day 186 – (July 4)

Acts 12:1-25

 

(Happy Independence Day to my American GC Family & ‘Sorry’ to my UK church family ) Speaking of freedom … Peter, and the early church believers, lived under constant threat of persecution. The church prayed, and Peter was delivered supernaturally. Persecution comes in all forms. What type of persecution do you face today, and how can we pray for you?

 

 

Day 187 – (July 5)

Acts 13:1-23

 

Notice in verse 2, the Holy Spirit spoke revealing God’s ministry calling for Paul and Barnabas. There are many lessons to be learned from this passage. Please encourage us by sharing a lesson that speaks to you and then help us understand how we can apply that lesson to our lives in a practical way.


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Matt Beemer

Director
GoChurch Global