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The Scriptorium

Drama King

God's big plan needs God's big revelation.

Acts (9)

And beginning at Moses and all the Prophets, He expounded to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning Himself. Luke 24.27

Be sure to view the video introducing our study of Acts 10 (Lesson 9) by clicking here.

Read and meditate on Acts 10.9-16.

The day after Cornelius had his vision in Caesarea, Peter was on the roof of Simon’s house in Joppa, probably observing the sixth hour of prayer (at noon), and he was getting hungry. God really knows how to get through to us.

For reflection
1.  Peter is getting hungry. He is primed to eat. God knows it, and He uses this frame of mind to impart a dazzling but puzzling vision of His will. What in particular about this vision would have gotten Peter’s attention?

2.  We as readers know where this is headed. Luke has us on the edge of our seats. We want to holler out at Peter, “It’s OK!” or “Watch this! Watch this!” but we just have to wait for him to get in on the story at the same depth we are. This is really good writing, no? A sheet is let down before Peter, teeming with all kinds of unclean animals, and he is instructed to have at ‘em. But he demurs, good Law-keeping believer that He is. God was about to take the ongoing work of Christ into a new phase and dimension, and He chose to use this vision to prepare the way. Is there a place for art, drama, poetry, and so forth in helping to prepare people for the Gospel? Or Christians, for taking their place in the ongoing work of Christ? Explain.

3.  Then the Lord gives His approval and explanation of what He has commanded, repeating the whole episode three times. The best art lines up with God’s purposes and plans. The experience still leaves Peter wondering within himself about the meaning of all this (v. 17). Why? Why was this such a struggle, and how do you think Peter must have been feeling? Do you ever feel this way about sharing the Gospel with someone whom you consider to be not a likely candidate for believing?

4.  Why didn’t God just give a verbal explanation to Peter like He did to Cornelius? Why all this drama? God often used artistic forms to declare His will and manifest His glory – even to prepare His people for new stages of His relationship with them. If we have no place in our lives for the arts, for poetry, for fine music, for novels and stories, plays and operas, for contemplating the creation, we’re cutting yourself off from areas of divine self-disclosure that God routinely loves to employ. Not all arts, of course; however, especially those wrought under the skilled hands of believing artists, God can use to make Himself and His glory known. The arts may “tell it slant,” as Emily Dickinson explained, but they tell it powerfully, with vision, and with lots of room to discover applications. How would you describe the role of the arts in your own discipleship at this time?

5.  What role do the arts play in your church, either in preparing people to take their place in the ongoing work of Christ, or in reaching out to your community?

In this story God can be seen doing something He did frequently in the Old Testament and the teaching of Jesus. He is redeeming the arts and putting them to use in the service of the Gospel. God is the drama King, and King of all the arts. He used them, and so should we. What is it about the arts that makes them such a powerful resource for the Kingdom of God? Why do Christians in our day tend not to engage the arts in their discipleship or mission?

Closing Prayer
You are fairer than the sons of men;
Grace is poured upon Your lips;
Therefore God has blessed You forever.
Gird Your sword upon Your thigh, O Mighty One,
With Your glory and Your majesty.
And in Your majesty ride prosperously because of truth, humility, and righteousness;
And Your right hand shall teach You awesome things.
Your arrows are sharp in the heart of the King’s enemies;
The peoples fall under You.
Your throne, O God, is forever and ever;
A scepter of righteousness is the scepter of Your kingdom.
You love righteousness and hate wickedness;
Therefore God, Your God, has anointed You
With the oil of gladness more than Your companions.
All Your garments are scented with myrrh and aloes and cassia,
Out of the ivory palaces, by which they have made You glad.
Kings’ daughters are among Your honorable women;
At Your right hand stands the queen in gold from Ophir.
Listen, O daughter,
Consider and incline your ear;
Forget your own people also, and your father’s house;
So the King will greatly desire your beauty;
Because He is your LORD, worship Him.

Psalm 45.2-11

T. M. Moore

Each week’s studies in Acts are bound together into a free PDF that you can download for personal or group use (click here). Each week also features a video related to the studies of the week, which you may find helpful as you work through our studies in Acts.

Acts is the record of Christ’s ongoing work as King and Lord. This is the work of bringing the Kingdom of God to earth as it is in heaven. Read more about the implications of this work in our new book,
The Kingdom Turn (click here).

Please prayerfully consider supporting The Fellowship of Ailbe by sending a gift to The Fellowship of Ailbe, 19 Tyler Drive, Essex Junction, VT 05452. Or, you can click here to donate online through credit card or PayPal.

T.M. Moore

T. M. Moore is principal of The Fellowship of Ailbe, a spiritual fellowship in the Celtic Christian tradition. He and his wife, Susie, make their home in the Champlain Valley of Vermont.
Books by T. M. Moore

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