Pastor Ed continued our case study of Acts 15 with verse 7-11. He pointed out that in the debate over whether Gentile Christians had to first become Jews, Peter called upon the early church to look for the leading of the Holy Spirit rather than relying upon tradition. He encouraged those of us in the church to consider what motivates us in making decisions for the church--our own desires or a desire for God's direction. As for the Gentiles, Peter notes that God gave them the Holy Spirits--and thus God's action should define what it Acts 15 is clear that the church--in the early days and today, is called to put God's will and direction first.
After much debate, Peter stood and addressed them, “Fellow believers, you know that, early on, God chose me from among you as the one through whom the Gentiles would hear the word of the gospel and come to believe. God, who knows people’s deepest thoughts and desires, confirmed this by giving them the Holy Spirit, just as he did to us. He made no distinction between us and them, but purified their deepest thoughts and desires through faith. Why then are you now challenging God by placing a burden on the shoulders of these disciples that neither we nor our ancestors could bear? On the contrary, we believe that we and they are saved in the same way, by the grace of the Lord Jesus.” Acts 15:7-11 CEB