I remember the first time I saw a confederate flag in Tacoma, fixed to the back of a pickup truck and driving down 6th Ave without a care in the world.
I gasped of shock. It was during the 2016 presidential election and this memory crystalizes the division for me. The Other. The Right Christian and the Wrong Christian. Unfriending online and in reality. Everyone says, “We’ve never been so divided.” Perhaps we have never been this divided as a country (although the Civil War might beg to differ), but as a group of faithful following the teachings of Christ, we have certainly been this divided.
So then, even to the Gentiles God has granted repentance that leads to life. ~ Acts 11:18
Peter is speaking to Jewish people here, assuring them that Gentiles (anyone who was not a Jew) could experience the gift of the Holy Spirit as well and should be treated with the same respect as fellow Jews. But it’s not really this verse talking about inclusion of people who were from different ethnicities and backgrounds that tells me there was division, it’s the word even.
Even the Gentiles. . .
That little phrase says so much to us about the conflicts of the time. It invokes a little shock, the idea that the original listener was going to be the tiniest bit horrified and would need some reassurance. Yes,
Even the Gentiles.