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Racial Reconciliation
October 18, 2016
The Bible shares a pretty awesome story in Acts 10 of how God encourages his followers to cross religious and racial boundaries for the sake of the Kingdom.  Peter had always been pretty clear on keeping racial lines distinct and was somewhat taken aback when God, through a vision, told him to eat and kill from the lowered sheet filled with unclean animals.  “Surely not, Lord!” Peter replied. “I have never eaten anything impure or unclean.” (v.14)  God replied, “Do not call anything impure that God has made clean.”  This was repeated three times.  Ever wonder why three times?  About that time Gentile visitors arrived and Peter, being convicted by the Spirit invited them in as guests, accompanied them to Cornelius’ house the next day, prohibited Cornelius to bow down and asked of what service he could be to Cornelius.  After Cornelius explained his dream Peter replied, “I now realize how true it is that God does not show favoritism but accepts from every nation the one who fears him and does what is right.” (v.34, 35)

We know that all people are created male and female, divine representatives of God on earth (Genesis 1:27ff).  All human beings have the mandate to rule and subdue the earth.  While we know that God does not show favouritism, do we by our attitudes and actions live out our faith that way toward other races?  In Acts 10, who was converted?  Peter was the one with a changed mind.  How can we have a change of mind in regard to racial actions and attitudes realizing that God does not show favouritism?  Maybe it could be begin with humility, letting go of pride and feelings of superiority.  It might help to acknowledge that the Holy Spirit is at work in all women and men.    It could mean that we see all of our neighbours as friends.  How else can we break down racial barriers with our friends, neighbours and co-workers?


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