Ellen G. White Writings

<< Back Forward >>

«Back «Hit «Prev. Pub. «Ch «Pg   Pg» Ch» Next Pub.» Hit» Forward»

From Trials to Triumph, Page 76

Peter Lays the Matter Before His Associates

When the brethren in Judea heard that Peter had preached to Gentiles, they were surprised and offended. When they next saw Peter they met him with severe censure: “Thou wentest in to men uncircumcised, and didst eat with them.”

Peter related his experience—the vision, the command to go to the Gentiles, the coming of the messengers, his journey to Caesarea, and the meeting with Cornelius. He recounted his interview with the centurion, who had told him of the vision by which he had been directed to send for Peter.

“As I began to speak,” he said, “the Holy Ghost fell on them, as on us at the beginning. Then remembered I the word of the Lord, how that He said, John indeed baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost. Forasmuch then as God gave them the like gift as He did unto us, who believed on the Lord Jesus Christ; what was I, that I could withstand God?”

The brethren were silenced. Convinced that their prejudice and exclusiveness were utterly contrary to the gospel, they said, “Then hath God also to the Gentiles granted repentance unto life.”

Thus, prejudice was broken down, exclusiveness was abandoned, and the way was opened for the gospel to be proclaimed to the Gentiles.

Chapter 15—An Angel Delivers Peter From Prison

This chapter is based on Acts 12:1-23, RSV.

“About that time Herod the king laid violent hands upon some who belonged to the church.” Herod Agrippa, subject to Claudius the Roman emperor, was professedly a proselyte to the Jewish faith. Desirous of obtaining the favor of the Jews, hoping thus to make secure his offices and honors, he proceeded to persecute the church of Christ. He cast James, the brother of John, into prison, and sent an executioner to kill him. Seeing that the Jews were well pleased, he imprisoned Peter also.

The death of James caused consternation among the believers. When Peter also was imprisoned, the entire church engaged in fasting and prayer.

Herod's act in putting James to death was applauded by the Jews, though some maintained that a public execution would have more thoroughly intimidated the believers. Herod therefore meant to gratify the Jews still further by the public spectacle of Peter's death, but not before all the people then assembled in Jerusalem. It was feared that the sight of him being led out to die might excite the pity of the multitude.

The priests and elders also feared lest Peter make one of those powerful appeals to study the life and character of Jesus—appeals which they had been unable to controvert. Peter's zeal had led many to take their stand for the gospel, and the rulers feared that should he be given an opportunity to defend his faith,

«Back «Hit «Prev. Pub. «Ch «Pg   Pg» Ch» Next Pub.» Hit» Forward»