On this February Sunday, let us think of a hot summer day in Southeast Missouri. A man and woman drove up and down the main street playing gospel music and then proceeded to walk down the sidewalks collecting money. Most people were shamed into giving something, including the man I was standing with. I had doubts about where the money was going so I asked the wife. I asked her which church she represented. She resented the question, but told me it was in a church some miles distant. I knew the town but did not know her church so I asked her where it was in the town.
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The bride-to-be was obviously nervous. It was only the rehearsal, but already the pastor could see that tomorrow’s wedding might be in for problems.
“You’re letting it all get to you,” he told her gently, as he pulled her aside. “Just take it one little step at a time. When you get to the door with your father tomorrow afternoon, look only at the aisle ahead of you. You’ve walked it hundreds of times, every Sunday when you come to church. Think only of that.
This story about Peter's mission to the Gentiles continues the account that began in 10:1, and it repeats in greater detail the content of Peter's vision that was already mentioned in 10:9-16. It is a remarkable story, because it treats rather lightly a dispute that was widespread in the New Testament church, the dispute over conditions to be laid upon Gentile converts to the faith.