1 The Eternal is the king ruling over all; let all people shake in fear. He sits on His throne, settled between winged guardians;[a] let the planet tremble. 2 The Eternal is great in the hearts of His people; He has made Zion His sacred mountain, and He reigns majestic over all people. 3 Let them express praise and gratitude to Your amazing and awesome name— because He is holy, perfect and exalted in His power. 4 The King who rules with strength also treasures justice. You created order and established what is right. You have carried out justice and done what is right to the people of Jacob. 5 Lift up the Eternal our God in your heart; bow down to the earth where He rests His feet. He is holy, perfect and exalted in His power.
6 Moses and Aaron were two of His priests; Samuel was among those who called out to Him. They asked the Eternal for help, and He answered them. 7 He answered them from a column of cloud; they heeded His testimonies and lived by the laws He gave them.
8 You answered them, Eternal our God; You were, to them, a God who forgives, yet You did not ignore what they did wrong and punished them fairly as well. 9 Lift up the Eternal our God in your hearts, and celebrate His goodness at His holy mountain, for the Eternal our God is holy, perfect and exalted in His power.
6 I’ll say it again: the Eternal One your God isn’t giving you this good land because you’re so good. You’re stubborn, obstinate people. 7 Remember—don’t forget—how you kept infuriating Him in the wilderness. From the day you came out of Egypt until the day you arrived here, you’ve been rebelling against Him.
8 Even at Horeb, you infuriated Him. The Eternal got so angry with you He was ready to destroy you! 9 When I went up the mountain to receive the stone tablets—the tablets of the covenant He made with you—I stayed on the mountain for 40 days and 40 nights. I didn’t eat or drink anything all that time, preparing myself to receive these holy words. 10-11 At the end of those 40 days and nights, the Eternal gave me those two stone tablets of the covenant. On them He’d engraved with His own finger everything He told you on the day you gathered at the mountain, when He spoke to you from inside the fire. 12 The Eternal told me, “Get up, and go back down the mountain as fast as you can! While you’ve been up here surrounded by My holiness, the people you led out of Egypt have become corrupt! How quickly they’ve left the path I commanded them to stay on. They’ve melted gold and poured it into a mold and made themselves an idol! 13 I’ve seen how stubborn and obstinate these people are. 14 Don’t try to stop Me—I’m going to destroy them! I’ll wipe out every last trace of them under the sky, and I’ll make a bigger and stronger nation out of just you.”
While Peter is in Joppa, another story is developing a day’s journey to the north along the Mediterranean coast.
10 Cornelius, a Roman Centurion and a member of a unit called the Italian Cohort, lived in Caesarea. 2 Cornelius was an outsider, but he was a devout man—a God-fearing fellow with a God-fearing family. He consistently and generously gave to the poor, and he practiced constant prayer to God. 3 About three o’clock one afternoon, he had a vision of a messenger of God.
Messenger of God: Cornelius!
Cornelius(terrified):4 What is it, sir?
Messenger of God: God has heard your prayers, and He has seen your kindness to the poor. God has taken notice of you. 5-6 Send men south to Joppa, to the house of a tanner named Simon. Ask to speak to a guest of his named Simon, but also called Peter. You’ll find this house near the waterfront.
7 After the messenger departed, Cornelius immediately called two of his slaves and a soldier under his command—an especially devout soldier. 8 He told them the whole story and sent them to Joppa.
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