THE SPIRIT TOLD ME TO
with Rev. Rachel
12 THE SPIRIT TOLD ME TO Acts 11
Peter has left the building.
I don’t know if it is appropriate or inappropriate to make light of a disappearing act, particularly when the person in question happens to be Peter.
What I do know is that come the middle of the Book of Acts, Scripture gets quiet about the Apostle always listed first (Matt. 10, Mk. 3, Lk. 6). Also missing: Any historical data or extra-biblical reporting about Peter’s ministry when Acts turns into Paul, Paul, Paul (a la “Marcia, Marcia, Marcia”).
Does it matter?
It doesn’t have to.
That said, telling the story of the church minus the fisherman from Bethsaida, brother to Andrew, confessor of Jesus as Messiah…it’s kind of hard. Peter, the one whose tears of remorse become water for his call to ministry (Jn 21): He is in our DNA. He belongs to the household of God of which we are a part.
At the risk of sounding melodramatic, Eastertide is the season. The first half of Acts will be gone before we know it. Now is the moment to absorb the errand Peter ran for the Creator and creation. [One could argue that the Book of Acts is accessible always, but so it is with many things in this era—accessible but engaged shallowly.]
Peter initiates the mission to the Gentiles. You and I are Gentiles (granting a few exceptions).
Before Paul’s pursuit, Peter came after us. He insisted on letting us know that in Jesus’ living, dying, and living again, there was plenty good room.
It’s easy to miss the gravity of what he gave. Peter offered his whole life. However many days he had beyond these recorded in Acts, I trust they were faithful; and that in him, God still delights.
If he was the traveling teacher who built up existing congregations, as some say he was, I can get behind that. May I be so bold as to trust that the point is not one good story starring me that will get told in its fullness; but rather, to follow the one God wherever Christ leads…which is, every step of the way, its own reward.