Day 77: A Major Shift

Acts 13:46-48 :

Paul and Barnabas spoke out boldly, and said, “It was necessary that God’s word should be spoken to you first. Since indeed you thrust it from you, and judge yourselves unworthy of eternal life, behold, we turn to the Gentiles. For so has the Lord commanded us, saying,

‘I have set you as a light for the Gentiles,
that you should bring salvation to the uttermost parts of the earth.’”

As the Gentiles heard this, they were glad, and glorified the word of God. As many as were appointed to eternal life believed.

At this point we see that the apostles had fulfilled their duty to preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ to the Jews first. Now they were to focus on the Gentiles. We will see later that God was not giving up on the Jews at all. This was, however, a major turning point in history as the word of God was going to go out to the whole world because of the Jews.

Notice the accusations against the Jews here. They thrust God’s word away and they judged themselves “unworthy of eternal life.” Notice that there were many Jews who did believe and were saved! The leadership of the Jewish people was leading them away from Christ as a nation, not necessarily as individuals. As we know from history this really was a turning point and Christianity became extremely influential in the Gentile world. Christianity didn’t influence every individual Gentile, but it did end up having an effect on the leadership of many nations.

Notice that the Old Testament made it clear that “salvation” was to be brought to the “uttermost parts of the earth.” Their goal wasn’t to make people feel good or give them a new religion, but to bring salvation to all those who are “appointed to eternal life” if they believe in Him. People needed to be saved from destruction. They didn’t need a religion.

Notice that the Gentiles who heard this “glorified the word of God.” That is what we should continue to do today. Not only should we not doubt it, we should believe it and then glorify it.