And on the following day they entered Caesarea. Cornelius was expecting them and had called together his relatives and close friends.
Previously we’ve looked at the link between Jesus’ instructions to his disciples on mission and his own example. We’ve looked at a continuing pattern of household conversions in Acts.
Of all the examples in Acts, one stands out. Luke tells the story of the conversion of Cornelius, his friends and family, an unprecedented four times. He wants to get our attention.
Peter’s mission to Cornelius’ household was modelled on Jesus’ example and training on how to enter a household of peace.
Jesus trained his disciples out to convert households as a doorway into unreached communities (Luke 10). This was the example Jesus set when he entered Zacchaeus’ home (Luke 19). In Acts, the Risen Lord led his followers to enter an unreached community through receptive households.
The best example in Acts is the story of Peter and Cornelius which Luke retells four times. It is not the story of one person’s conversion. It is the story of the founding of a church.
Here are the parallels between the instructions Jesus gave the 72 before he sent them out, and the mission of Peter to the Gentiles in Acts.
What is it that Luke is trying to tell us? What relevance does Jesus example, training have for us today?