First Gentile Converts

“As the church enters this period of peace and continued growth, the time is ripe for God’s eternal plan to be implemented in still another major dimension — the extension of God’s grace to the Gentiles.  (Can I get an Amen?!!) 🙂  For hundreds of years God’s dealing with man have focused upon the small nation of Israel and its Jewish people.  Yet God had promised their father Abraham that through his seed all nations would be blessed.  And Jesus himself continually proclaimed and demonstrated that his saving power was for all.  But neither the apostles nor the early Jewish Christians have as yet comprehended the full implications of that message.

God’s eternal plan all along has been that all people of the world — Jew and non-Jew alike — should come to know him through Christ Jesus.  To approach ‘pagan’ Gentiles has seemed unthinkable.  Thus it will take a special vision from the Lord to convince them that the Gentiles are also included within God’s plan.”

Read:  Acts 9:32-43, 10 & 11

Persecution by Herod Agrippa I

“The period of calm which permitted the church to reach out to Gentiles is not to continue for long.  King Herod Agrippa I will soon find it politically advantageous to instigate a new period of persecution against these believers, who are now called Christians. 

Among his other acts of persecution, Agrippa seizes James, the brother of John, and puts him to death.  Peter too is imprisoned, and probably destined for the same fate.  But Peter will be spared by a miracle.  Ironically, Herod’s wickedness will result in his own death, and the church will continue to grow despite his attempt at oppression.”

Read:  Acts 12

All quotations taken from The Daily Bible.