The Liberation of Peter: The Gospel to the World

There’s a few reasons that can occur, none of which have to do with the author. Discourse auto-pulls articles from the Spectrum website as soon as they are created, but it doesn’t pull everything (others have noted in the past that videos, for instance, don’t transfer over and unfortunately can’t be added in). Additionally, the author byline that appears at the very top of every Spectrum website article (and can be used to search through all of an author’s writing), never transfers over (and can’t be added in either).

As for this case, where the author bio at the end of the article was missing, it is most likely the case that the editor forgot to put the bio in the article on the Spectrum website, then realized the error, added it in, but the Discourse version had already been created. The website editors and Discourse moderators are not the same people (there is some overlap but not much), so unless we’re alerted to the error either by the editor or by an eagle-eyed reader, we won’t know something’s missing over here.

I don’t know if that helps clarify or just adds to the confusion (Discourse is a mysterious beast), but we’ll confer with the editor just to be sure of what happened, and in the meantime, I’ve added in Dr. Hemmings’ bio on the Discourse version.


Interesting that the last time Peter is ever mentioned in the NT, he is confronted by Paul over his walkout on Gentiles from the fellowship table at Antioch. Over eating together. Everything he stood up for with his actions towards Cornelius, he abandoned under pressure from the Jerusalem delegates from James.

Paul saw how egregious this was, and publicly confronted Peter, telling him that he was totally out of line with the truth of the gospel. And what’s interesting in the story is that Paul said, “How is it that you are trying to force Gentiles to live like Jews, when you’ve been living like a Gentile yourself?”

The minimum this could possibly mean is that Peter was totally disregarding any sense of separation/purity laws while eating with uncircumcised Gentiles. The maximum, is that Peter was actually abandoning the food/ kosher laws, actually living like a Gentile when with them, and eating their food at the same table with them.

Word gets back to Jerusalem that the apostle to the Jews is breaking Torah, and the pressure is applied. Peter caves, and Paul sees the unity of the church and the unifying truth of the gospel under assault.

This is the first time Paul ever mentions justification by faith. And, it’s not primarily about how our individual sins are forgiven. It’s about the idea that God’s favor, and belonging, is not limited to a special group, based on their favored nation status, and their law. God is the one God equally of Jews and Gentiles, regardless of these differences. All belong at the same table around Christ, whoever they are, and whatever they may eat. They are right with God in his judgement, period, and belong fully!

As Paul said in Romans, “The kingdom of God is not about eating and drinking, but about righteousness, peace, and joy, in the Holy Spirit.” Can we, in the Adventist church,ever listen to this seriously and honestly?




The vision was symbolic but it had less than a full impact on Peper. recall Paul had to set Peter straight later on. It seems that national politics could learn a lot form Peters vision. Language, culture, and color are not required of citizenship. Not even the color or cut of the hair. The inscription on the base of the statute of Liberty says it all.

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I am posting what is the actual NRSV bible quote… that is the memory verse.

34Then Peter began to speak to them: “I truly understand that God shows no partiality, 35 but in every nation anyone who fears him and does what is right is acceptable to him.

Notice the mismatch:
ARTICLE: Acts 10:34, NRSV:Then Peter began to speak to them: “I truly understand that God shows no partiality, but in every nation anyone who does what is right is acceptable to him.”

That is beside the point I want to make…

In other translations , the person works righteousness…
Oh but we are often taught that …all our righteousness is as filthy rags…so big deal!

Now as for partiality… does God accept those who fear Him and works righteousness but reject those who don’t? How far does this impartiality with God really go?

God resists the proud. Are there conditions to be accepted by God. Is He really totally impartial? Jesus says to not cast pearls before swine. Is that being partial?

Another example where one has to unpack/explain verses so they can be properly understood & practically applied.

God not being partial must be taken in context. It deals with God not being just the God of the Jews. His favor was not restricted to those who claim such status through blood, soil, or religious law, or tradition. This was the attitude of Peter and the early Jewish believers that needed to be blown up. You see this struggle throughout the NT, especially in Galatians and Romans.

Justification by faith was all about the idea that God was the God of both Jew and Gentile, with no partiality and no distinction. That God responds to and accepts people who are open to him, like Cornelius. Who do justice, love mercy, and seek after God, or who realize they are simply lost and without hope without him, no matter what their religious, tribal affiliation may be.