Read: Acts 11:1–18

What God has made clean, you must not call profane. Acts 11:9b

In this passage, Peter tells the believers in Jerusalem that no one is outside God’s love. God had made it clear to Peter that both Jew and Gentile—clean and unclean—were part of the family of God, and joint heirs to the blessings of that lineage. God doesn’t make clean and unclean people—God only makes children. In this passage, it becomes clear that God’s love is all-inclusive. “What God has made clean, you must not call profane!” No one is outside God’s care. That became a founding principle of the Christian church. There are to be no outsiders, only family members!

When we come to grips with the reality that God’s love and blessing extend to the entire world, we are forced to recognize that things have to change in our lives. First, God’s all-embracing love convicts us because it reveals to us the failure of our own exclusive nature. Second, it should create in us a renewed sense of compassion for the people we struggle to be around; if God loves and cares for the people we can’t stand, then we should find ways to offer our love and care to them as well. And finally, if God’s love allows God to see the best in us, then we should make the changes necessary in our lives to live up to that love and belief.

What conviction, compassion, or change needs to take root in your life?

Lord, I cannot thank You enough for the love You have for me. I know I do not deserve Your love and care. And yet You offer it freely to me and to all humanity. Help me to take hold of Your love in ways that convict me, build compassion in my life, and prompt me to make the changes that reflect Your belief in me. In Jesus, name I pray. AMEN.