Acts 2:39 For the promise is for you and for your children and for all who are far off, everyone whom the Lord our God calls to himself.”
The promise of forgiveness, salvation and the seal of the Holy Spirit is for Jew and Gentile, near and far, anyone the Lord calls to Himself. This promise that Peter shares is counterintuitive to his mindset. He struggles with prejudice towards gentiles and foreigners throughout his life. Therefore you know this message is the Spirit’s.
A few things…
-The sacrifice of Jesus, His resurrection and the coming of the Holy Spirit is the fulfillment of a promise. All were an act of God that he had planned from the beginning. The story of our faith is not a man made religion to address a problem. The story of Christianity is the fulfillment of God’s plan and promise. (Trust His plan over any self-help plan)
-Everyone (near and far off) means exactly that. Some people are so close and others seem too far away. Regardless they both have hope. No one I meet today, regardless of how sideways they are at God and how dark their life is, is too far gone. The only people too far gone are people who have already gone to the grave. (Treat everyone like they have hope)
-The Lord calls them to Himself. This is huge. Though I am called to treat everyone alive like they still have hope, the pressure is not on me to win them or persuade them. The scripture says that Lord calls them to Himself. He is the one that opens their eyes, softens their hearts and draws them in. The job of the believer is to love people and model and share the truth. I don’t have the right to pick and choose, that is Jesus’ job. I have the responsibility to treat everyone like they are being drawn and trust God with the rest. (Don’t carry a weight that isn’t mine (drawing and choosing) but faithfully carry the weight that is mine (loving, modeling and sharing)
I love the story of the church’s birth. It started with people stepping out in faith, the truth of the gospel and a movement of your Spirit. The same applies today. May I be faithful with what you called me to do and trust you with what you have promised that you would do.