THE WORD OF TRUTH MINISTRY
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Otis Q. Sellers, Founder David R. Hettema, Director
Volume 3, No. 11 Jane Sellers Hancock, Editor April 2012
THOUGHTS FROM THE EDITOR
Jane S. Hancock
I am thoroughly enjoying re-reading the Book of Acts. I want to know more about Peter and Paul and the other characters who walk onto the Acts stage, some who are named and some who are not. I appreciate the stories that go along with these characters, stories about faith and miracles and violence and love and vengeance. And I am curious about the role of the Gentiles—before Acts 28:28.
Those of us here at the Word of Truth Ministry believe that the dividing line between the Acts Period and the Dispensation of Grace is Acts 28:28: “Be it known therefore unto you, that the salvation of God is sent unto the Gentiles, and that they will hear it.”
Before Acts 28:28 the message went to the Jew first. When Peter and Paul, the two main characters, along with others who were spreading the Gospel, travel and minister to the people, it is always to the Jew first.
Israel had been a privileged people for centuries, but God has a plan, a plan for the nations to hear His word, a plan that is culminated at Acts 28:28.
We read about this plan that begins with Paul, who has been chosen for a special mission. This mission is told in a vision to Ananias in Acts 9:15. Ananias has heard of Saul (later renamed Paul), has heard about the evil he had done in the past. “But the Lord said unto him, Go thy way: for he is a chosen vessel unto me, to bear My name before the Gentiles (nations), and kings, and the children of Israel.”
And Peter has a special mission as well. In Acts 10 we meet Cornelius, a centurion in the Roman army, fears God, prays to God, gives alms to the poor. In a vision, an angel of God tells him to send for Peter in Joppa. Which he does. Meanwhile Peter has a dream. Acts 10:11-16. And although he is unsure what the dream, the vision means, it becomes clear when the men Cornelius sent arrive.
“Arise therefore, and get thee down, and go with them, doubting nothing: for I have sent them” (Acts 10:20). And Peter does. He preaches to Cornelius and all his household and baptizes them in the name of the Lord. “Of a truth I perceive that God is no respecter of persons: but in every nation he that feareth Him, and worketh righteousness, is accepted with Him” (Acts 10:34-35).
Sergius Paulus in Acts 13:7 wants to hear the word of God but a sorcerer tries to keep him from the faith. Paul causes the sorcerer to go blind and upon seeing this Sergius Paulus believes, “being astonished at the doctrine of the Lord” (Acts 13:12).
In Acts 13:16 we find Paul speaking to the Jews and to the Gentiles (nations): “Then Paul stood up, and beckoning with his hand said, Men of Israel, and ye that fear God, give audience.”
And again in Acts 13:26: “Men and brethren, children of the stock of Abraham, and whosoever among you feareth God, to you is the word of this salvation sent.”
Let’s continue in Acts 13. Paul, in the synagogue, has just finished a short history of the Old Testament, ending with this statement: “Be it known until you therefore, men and brethren, that through this man
Volume 3, No. 11, April 2012adminSandB2020-10-06T13:49:38+00:00