Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Acts 15:8-9

Acts 15:8-9 - God, who knows the heart, showed that He accepted them by giving the Holy Spirit to them, just as He did to us. He made no distinction between us and them, for He purified their hearts by faith.

Peter spoke these words as he was defending the Gentiles in front of the other Jews. A dispute had risen up. Some thought that when the Gentiles got saved they needed to adopt all the rules that the Jews were supposed to follow. They were specifically referring to circumcision. This is something that the Jews held in high regard, because it was a sign of the original covenant between God and man. Now they thought that since the Gentiles were being adopted into the kingdom of God, they should start doing these things as well.
These men had forgotten that it is on no part of our own that we are saved. It is not by works or deeds, but through faith, by the grace of God. Peter is now reminding them of that. He speaks of God looking at the heart of man and that every man is the same in God’s kingdom.
Now, as Christians, we too can fall into this trap. We get into the thinking that if you are a child of God you should dress or act a certain way. Sometimes it falls to actions as well, what we should or shouldn't do.
In the spirit of what Peter said here let me tell you this: It does not matter what you look like; how many tattoos or piercings you have; or what clothes you are wearing. Likewise, it does not matter what you are doing, whether it be smoking or drinking or what you are watching on TV. God wants you for you. You don’t need to change a bunch of things to come to Him. He says, “Come as you are!” No matter what, you are accepted and Loved. Let the Holy Spirit tell you what to change in your life, not the traditions of men. God just wants your heart.

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