Today is Monday, October 9th, and I am so glad that you are on this journey through Acts with us. We will be reading about Peter reporting to the church what the Lord is continuing to teach him. I hope that you and I can both learn something new today in our study of Scripture. - Mallory
(Take time to write down responses to these questions or discuss in your group)
- Have you ever felt like an outsider? Whether that be at work or school, because of beliefs or for no reason in particular?
- How is the Lord impacting someone you are walking with (to help grow in or discover Jesus)?
Lord, we ask that you would be present with us today as we study Your Word. We want to hear from You, we want to better know You, and we want to know how to love You better. Lord, guide us and give us understanding as we read. Help us to be open to what You have to say.
DISCOVER [Acts 11:1-18]
+ WHAT is this passage saying and what do we learn? (Use these questions below each portion of text to clarify the main point)
Now the apostles and the brothers who were throughout Judea heard that the Gentiles also had received the word of God. 2 So when Peter went up to Jerusalem, the circumcision party criticized him, saying, 3 “You went to uncircumcised men and ate with them.” 4 But Peter began and explained it to them in order: 5 “I was in the city of Joppa praying, and in a trance I saw a vision, something like a great sheet descending, being let down from heaven by its four corners, and it came down to me. 6 Looking at it closely, I observed animals and beasts of prey and reptiles and birds of the air. 7 And I heard a voice saying to me, ‘Rise, Peter; kill and eat.’ 8 But I said, ‘By no means, Lord; for nothing common or unclean has ever entered my mouth.’ 9 But the voice answered a second time from heaven, ‘What God has made clean, do not call common.’ 10 This happened three times, and all was drawn up again into heaven.
- What is on the great sheet Peter sees in his vision? What do all of these things have in common?
- Why is it important that Peter has never eaten anything common or unclean?
- What does the Lord mean when he says “What God has made clean, do not call common” (v.9)?
11 And behold, at that very moment three men arrived at the house in which we were, sent to me from Caesarea. 12 And the Spirit told me to go with them, making no distinction. These six brothers also accompanied me, and we entered the man's house. 13 And he told us how he had seen the angel stand in his house and say, ‘Send to Joppa and bring Simon who is called Peter; 14 he will declare to you a message by which you will be saved, you and all your household.’ 15 As I began to speak, the Holy Spirit fell on them just as on us at the beginning. 16 And I remembered the word of the Lord, how he said, ‘John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.’ 17 If then God gave the same gift to them as he gave to us when we believed in the Lord Jesus Christ, who was I that I could stand in God's way?”18 When they heard these things they fell silent. And they glorified God, saying, “Then to the Gentiles also God has granted repentance that leads to life.”
- What does it mean that Peter went then the men “making no distinction” (v. 12)?
- Who has the church realized God grants repentance to? How did they come to this conclusion?
+ HOW am I compelled to confess sin and how does the gospel compel me to respond with a simple step of action/obedience? (Here are some thoughts to discuss in break-outs)
- How does this passage influence the way I think about who needs the Gospel?
- How have I been limiting who I share the Gospel with, whether it has been intentional or not?
- How do I want to make a change moving forward?
+ WHO are you walking with to discover or grow in Jesus and what is your next step with them, how can we help?