Acts 10:9-48 niv
9 About noon the following day as they were on their journey and approaching the city, Peter went up on the roof to pray.
10 He became hungry and wanted something to eat, and while the meal was being prepared, he fell into a trance.
11 He saw heaven opened and something like a large sheet being let down to earth by its four corners.
12 It contained all kinds of four-footed animals, as well as reptiles of the earth and birds of the air.
13 Then a voice told him, “Get up, Peter. Kill and eat.”
14 “Surely not, Lord!” Peter replied. “I have never eaten anything impure or unclean.”
15 The voice spoke to him a second time, “Do not call anything impure that God has made clean.”
16 This happened three times, and immediately the sheet was taken back to heaven.
17 While Peter was wondering about the meaning of the vision, the men sent by Cornelius found out where Simon’s house was and stopped at the gate.
18 They called out, asking if Simon who was known as Peter was staying there.
19 While Peter was still thinking about the vision, the Spirit said to him, “Simon, three men are looking for you.
20 So get up and go downstairs. Do not hesitate to go with them, for I have sent them.”
21 Peter went down and said to the men, “I’m the one you’re looking for. Why have you come?”
22 The men replied, “We have come from Cornelius the centurion. He is a righteous and God-fearing man, who is respected by all the Jewish people. A holy angel told him to have you come to his house so that he could hear what you have to say.”
Peter at Cornelius’s House
23 Then Peter invited the men into the house to be his guests. The next day Peter started out with them, and some of the brothers from Joppa went along.
24 The following day he arrived in Caesarea. Cornelius was expecting them and had called together his relatives and close friends.
25 As Peter entered the house, Cornelius met him and fell at his feet in reverence.
26 But Peter made him get up. “Stand up,” he said, “I am only a man myself.”
27 Talking with him, Peter went inside and found a large gathering of people.
28 He said to them: “You are well aware that it is against our law for a Jew to associate with a Gentile or visit him. But God has shown me that I should not call any man impure or unclean.
29 So when I was sent for, I came without raising any objection. May I ask why you sent for me?”
30 Cornelius answered: “Four days ago I was in my house praying at this hour, at three in the afternoon. Suddenly a man in shining clothes stood before me
31 and said, ‘Cornelius, God has heard your prayer and remembered your gifts to the poor.
32 Send to Joppa for Simon who is called Peter. He is a guest in the home of Simon the tanner, who lives by the sea.’
33 So I sent for you immediately, and it was good of you to come. Now we are all here in the presence of God to listen to everything the Lord has commanded you to tell us.”
34 Then Peter began to speak: “I now realize how true it is that God does not show favoritism
35 but accepts men from every nation who fear him and do what is right.
36 You know the message God sent to the people of Israel, telling the good news of peace through Jesus Christ, who is Lord of all.
37 You know what has happened throughout Judea, beginning in Galilee after the baptism that John preached–
38 how God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and power, and how he went around doing good and healing all who were under the power of the devil, because God was with him.
39 “We are witnesses of everything he did in the country of the Jews and in Jerusalem. They killed him by hanging him on a tree,
40 but God raised him from the dead on the third day and caused him to be seen.
41 He was not seen by all the people, but by witnesses whom God had already chosen–by us who ate and drank with him after he rose from the dead.
42 He commanded us to preach to the people and to testify that he is the one whom God appointed as judge of the living and the dead.
43 All the prophets testify about him that everyone who believes in him receives forgiveness of sins through his name.”
44 While Peter was still speaking these words, the Holy Spirit came on all who heard the message.
45 The circumcised believers who had come with Peter were astonished that the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out even on the Gentiles.
46 For they heard them speaking in tongues and praising God. Then Peter said,
47 “Can anyone keep these people from being baptized with water? They have received the Holy Spirit just as we have.”
48 So he ordered that they be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ. Then they asked Peter to stay with them for a few days.
“Have before thine eyes the fear of God, and always remember the ten commandments of God, – to love the one and only Lord God with all thy strength; to give no heed to idols, or any other beings, as being lifeless gods, or irrational beings or demons. Consider the manifold workmanship of God, which received its beginning through Christ. Thou shalt observe the Sabbath, on account of Him who ceased from His work of creation, but ceased not from His work of providence; it is a rest for meditation of the law, not for the idleness of the hands” (Ante-Nicene Fathers, Volume 7, p. 413, 1951 edition).
“The Arians, as we have said, held their meetings without the city. As often, therefore, as the festal days occurred – I mean Saturday [Sabbath] and the Lord’s day – in each week, on which assemblies are usually held in the churches, they congregated within the city gates about the public squares, and sang responsive verses adapted to the Arian heresy. This they did during the greater part of the night and again in the morning, chanting the same songs which they called responsive, they paraded through the midst of the city, and so passed out of the gates to go to their places of assembly” (Socrates’ Ecclesiastical History, Book 6, Chapter 8, The Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers, Volume 3, p. 144).
“Louis XII, king of France, being informed by the enemies of the Waldenses inhabiting a part of the province of Provence, that several heinous crimes were laid to their account, sent the Master of Requests, and a certain doctor of the Sorbonne; who was a confessor to His Majesty, to make inquiry into this matter. On their return, they reported that they had visited all the parishes where they dwelt, had inspected their places of worship, but that they had found there no images, nor signs of the ornaments which belong to the mass, nor any of the ceremonies of the Romish Church; much less could they discover any traces of those crimes with which they had been charged.
“On the contrary, they kept the Sabbath day, observed the ordinance of baptism according to the primitive church, instructed their children in the articles of the Christian faith and the commandments of God. The king having heard the report of this commissioner, said with an oath that they were better men than himself or his people” (Church History, Volume II, Chapter V, Section 4).
“It was the practice generally of the Easterne Churches; and some churches of the west…For in the Church of Millaine (Milan);…it seems the Saturday was held in a farre esteeme… Not that the Easterne Churches, or any of the rest which observed that day, were inclined to Iudaisme (Judaism); but that they came together on the Sabbath day, to worship Iesus (Jesus) Christ the Lord of the Sabbath.” “History of the Sabbath” (original spelling retained), Part 2, par. 5, pp.73, 74. London: 1636. Dr. Heylyn.
ORIENT AND MOST OF WORLD
“Among the documents. we have by the same peoples, an explanation of the Ten Commandments dated by Boyer 1120. Observance of the Sabbath by ceasing from worldly labours, is enjoined.” Blair, History of the Waldenses, Vol.1, p. 220
Sects such as the Waldenses, Albigenses, and Leonists appear to have retained sabbath observance in Europe during the Middle Ages. A report of an inquisition, before which were brought some Waldenses of Moravia in the middle of the 15th century, declares that among the Waldenses “not a few indeed celebrate the Sabbath with the Jews.”[ • von Doellinger, Johann Joseph Ignaz (1890). Beitrage zur Sektengeschichte des Mittelalters [Reports on the History of the Sects of the Middle Ages] (2d ed.). Munich. p. 661.
The Vaudois, known as such by the world, but holding to the true Bible name, were persecuted for the true faith. They observed the seventh day of the week, according to the commandment, immersed for believers baptism, and kept the Passover, or the Lord’s Supper, once a year, in the first month. — See pages 348, 349, Persecutions and Atrocities on the Vaudois.
The first recorded Seventh Day Baptist meeting was held at The Mill Yard Church in London in 1651 under the leadership of Dr. Peter Chamberlen. However many Seventh Day Baptists believe that it had originated in 1617 with John Trask and his wife.[5
The first Seventh Day Baptist church in America was at Newport, Rhode Island in December 1671. Samuel and Tacy Hubbard, two members of the First Baptist Church of Newport, pastored by John Clarke (1609–76), withdrew from that church and joined with Stephen Mumford, a Seventh Day Baptist from England, and 4 others, covenanting to meet together for worship, calling themselves Sabbatarian Baptists. Mumford, for his part, arrived in Rhode Island in 1665, and was mentioned as an advocate for seventh-day Sabbath in many records of that time. Other churches rose in Pennsylvania and New Jersey, and soon spread north into Connecticut and New York, and south into Virginia and the Carolinas. Seventh-day Sabbatarianism also emerged among the Germans at Ephrata, Pennsylvania, founded in 1735. Ephrata was incorporated as the German Religious Society of Seventh Day Baptists in 1814, and the site where their community was founded came to be known at the Ephrata Cloister. The Seventh Day Baptist General Conference was organized in 1801.
John James [d.1661] was a Seventh Day Baptist preacher and an Elder of his London congregation. James and his congregation were arrested on 19 Oct. 1661 for their dissident views. Following Venner’s Uprising , he was tried for treason and preaching sedition against the Government. He was accused of being a militant Fifth Monarchy Men. Not being a militant Fifth Monarchy Man, James indicated he would now join Venner and his cause if he could. He was hanged, disemboweled and quartered at Tyburn on 29 Nov. 1661. His head was placed on a pole/pike in Whitechapel (London) near his congregation in Bulstake Alley. James was martyred as an example to others.
16 All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, 17 that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work. (2 Timothy 3:16-17)