Lessons from the Holy Land – Part 4 – Salvation for All
In visiting Caesarea many thoughts are crossing my mind. Herod the Great’s drive to create a kingdom for himself is very sad but very impressive. The theatre, Hippodrome and aqueducts are incredibly amazing. Parts of the original structures still stand after thousands of years. Ruins of palaces,
a swimming pool, stables, toilets, water systems, and so much more scatter a wide area of land with amazing views of the crystal clear Mediterranean Sea. I am in awe of my surroundings and can’t seem to take it all in no matter how hard I look. Yes, all of these things are amazing to see and touch and experience. So many things that would be behind glass in a museum in the U.S. are just out in the elements, available to touch and experience. I know I have written, “Amazing”, many times already but it truly is!
However, my soul has come to rest on something I couldn’t see but could certainly feel. Philip, Paul, and Peter were here. They looked out over this very sea and gazed across this horizon. The Sea hasn’t changed nor has the horizon. These men made their way through this very place where I stand on a dangerous, rocky, unknown journey to spread the message that has saved my very life. They gave themselves for me, a simple minister’s wife of the year 2017. They didn’t know the impact they were going to have on the world. They were just obedient to their calling.
I saw Joppa yesterday where Peter had the vision of the white sheet lowered from heaven; where he began to understand that salvation through Jesus Christ was going to be available to all people that we all could be made clean. Then he was called by messenger to Caesarea by Cornelius the centurion; this Caesarea where my feet are standing; this Caesarea, this Mediterranean, this horizon. Cornelius – a gentile – and his entire family received the gift of salvation right here in this area where I stand. My salvation story, my opportunity to know the saving love of my Jesus began right here. I am overwhelmed with gratitude to Peter and to Cornelius for listening when God gave instructions and following through with obedience.
Now, what am I to do with this new appreciation for their obedience and the effect it had for me and thousands of others? What am I to do with my deep gratitude that God would want to include me – ALL of us in His salvation plan?
I must also follow in the footsteps of Peter and in his quest to make sure that ALL are given the opportunity to receive the gift of salvation through Jesus Christ. I must remind myself that I do not create the guest list for who will sit at the King’s table for the final eternal feast. It is not my job to choose who will hear or who deserves forgiveness. It is my job to speak and live Jesus and His love in my life every day. I am to offer the gospel boldly, lovingly, and without hesitation to anyone who will listen.
Will there be anyone sitting next to me at the King’s table that can say, “You, Kelly Moore, are the reason I am sitting here today. You led me to salvation in Jesus Christ. You showed me the love of God and helped me find the path to Him.” I must listen and be obedient. Where is my Caesarea and who is my Cornelius? Lead me Lord, I am listening.