Are You Sure About That God?
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God does not always act as we think He should. More often than not, He doesn't. Not because He isn't consistent He is. Theologians refer to God's consistency as the immutability of God. God said, "For I, the Lord, do not change." (Malachi 3:6 NASB) and the Psalmist wrote, "Of old Thou didst found the earth; And the heavens are the work of Thy hands.  Even they will perish, but Thou dost endure; And all of them will wear out like a garment; Like clothing Thou wilt change them, and they will be changed.  But Thou art the same, And Thy years will not come to an end." (Psalm 102:25-27 NASB) The writer of Hebrews said something similar when he wrote, "Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever." (Hebrews 13:8 KJV)
Today the error of Open Theology spuriously teaches that God evolves. He does not. He is the eternal constant in a constantly changing world. When God spoke to Moses He identified Himself as "I AM WHO I AM." (Exodus 3:14 NASB) Enough said.
Yet even though God never changes, there are times that He is a complete mystery to us times when we cannot anticipate what He will do and we are completely surprised by something He says. Take our text today. Immediately after the conversion of Saul, some things happened that were a bit out of the ordinary.
This portion of the text begins with an unusual miracle. Tabitha, a good woman who was constantly doing good deeds died. The church reacted by ministering to the family's immediate needs. They cleaned her up and sent for their pastor, Simon Peter to come. Peter immediately went to her house. The other widows greeted him, openly wept over their loss and showed Peter the clothes that Tabitha had made for them while she was still alive. Peter asked them to leave the room, and when he was alone with the body he knelt and prayed. He looked toward the corpse and said, "Tabitha, get up!" (vs. 40) And she did. As news spread throughout Joppa of the miracle, a strange thing happened. Peter stayed in Joppa with Simon, a leather tanner (vs 43). Strange because according to Leviticus 11:35-40 Simon was "unclean."
As a tanner, Simon was constantly touching carcasses and was unclean, yet Peter stayed with him. It was in that environment that God would speak to Peter and cause him to ask, "Are you sure about that God?"
Peter went up to the rooftop to pray. It was around noon, so his prayers were fighting for his attention with his hunger and his hunger won. During the preparation of the food he slipped into a dream-like state and God began to speak to him.
Meanwhile, Cornelius, a God-fearing gentile had sent some of his servants to get Simon Peter. An angel of the Lord had appeared to Cornelius and said, "'Your prayers and alms have ascended as a memorial before God.  And now dispatch some men to Joppa, and send for a man named Simon, who is also called Peter;  he is staying with a certain tanner named Simon, whose house is by the sea.'" Acts 10:4-6 (NASB)
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