Acts 10

Acts 10: The Gospel of the Gentiles

There was a man in Caesarea named Cornelius, who was a centurion [ancient Roman army officer: in ancient Rome, an officer in charge of a unit of foot soldiers] of the band called the ‘Italian band’. Cornelius was a devout man, who gave to the poor and prayed to God daily. Cornelius has a vision, where an angel of the Lord is sent commanding him to send men to Joppa and call for Peter.

Meanwhile in Joppa, Peter is on the roof top of the house of the Tanner, where he is praying to God. During his prayer, he falls into a ‘trance’, where he sees the heavens open and sheet filled with clean and unclean animals descends down upon him. The Lord tells Peter to “…kill, and eat.” (Acts 10:13) Peter refuses, because some of the animals are unclean. The invitation from the Lord to eat happens three times before the sheet goes back into heaven. Peter is awoken from his trance by the men that Cornelius had sent knocking on the gate of the home. Peter is told by the Spirit; “…Behold, three men seek thee. Arise therefore, and get thee down, and go with them, doubting nothing: for I have sent them.” (Acts 10:19-20)

The men explain why they were sent, and Peter lodges with them. The next morning they depart together to Caesarea to meet Cornelius. When they arrive, Cornelius falls at the feet of Peter and worships him. Peter quickly corrects him, saying: “…Stand up; I myself also am a man.” (Acts 10:26)

Peter then speaks to Cornelius and his house, he points out that it is actually unlawful for a Jew to keep company with other people from other nations, but he explains from his vision the previous day that God had taught him; “…that I [Peter] should not call any man common or unclean.” (Acts 10:28) Peter then teaches of Jesus Christ and opens up his address by emphasizing “…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 of him.” (Acts 10:34-35) Peter goes on to explain the story of Jesus Christ and how He died for the Sins of all. While Peter spake, the Spirit of God fell upon all who were gathered and they did believe.

Job 38-39

Job 38-39

Chapter 38: Nature and God

The Lord speaks to Job from the whirlwind;

“Where was thou when I laid the foundations of the earth? Declare, if thou had understanding. Who hath laid the measures thereof, if thou knowest? Or who hath stretched the line upon it? Whereupon are the foundations thereof fastened? Or who laid the corner stone thereof; When the morning stars sang together, and all the sons of God shouted for joy?” (Job 38:4-7)

Over the previous 35 chapters (since Job 2), God has been directly absent from the account. We read nothing of God’s direct role in comforting, speaking to, or sustaining Job in the midst of his crisis. Over that time, Job has ached repeatedly for a word from God.

Here, God responds to Job and asks him where he was when the Lord set the foundation of the world. Some scholars would say that God was using this to explain that Job was nowhere to be found, and that only God would answer this question. However, this is where I and the LDS church disagree. I believe that God was referencing our pre-earth life where we lived with God. Notice how is says that when all the sons of God “shouted for joy” – they shouted for joy because God created the Earth for us, so we could come down and have the experiences we are now having. God was reminding Job of what he had forgotten, God is his Heavenly Father and he has a heavenly home.

From verse 8-41 God asks Job a lot of questions about the nature of man and the power of God and how God created and controls nature. 8-12 specifically references God’s work on the second day of creation (Genesis 1:6-8) when God divided the waters and separated the land from the sea.

                It mentions a lot of interesting things about the creation of the Earth;

                “…the springs of the sea…” (Job 38:16)

                “…the gates of death…” (Job 38:17)

                “…the breadth (vast expanses) of the earth…” (Job 38:18)

                “…the treasures (storehouses) of the snow…” (Job 38:22)

                “…rain on the earth…” (Job 38:27)

                “…the face of the deep…” (Job 38:30)

“…the ordinances of heaven…” (Job 38:33)

“…bottles of heaven…” (Job 38:37)

Chapter 39: Man Knows Nothing

“Knowest thou the time when the wild goats of the rock bring forth?” (Job 39:1) God kept bringing the level of knowledge down for Job. He could, quite possibly, know such facts of nature from simple observation. Yet even this low level of knowledge was beyond Job, or really any man for that matter.

God continues to go on about fairly simple truths of science and nature that neither Job nor his friends knew. God essentially makes the point that Man’s weakness and ignorance is nothing like Gods. God is mighty and his works are mighty.