Shimon Kepha’s Vision

Let us look carefully at what Acts 10 says about Shimon Kepha’s vision by looking at the context and full picture and make sure that we understand it correctly.

Act 10:1-48
(1) Now there was a certain man in Caesarea called Cornelius, a captain of what was called the Italian Regiment,
(2) dedicated, and fearing Elohim with all his household, doing many kind deeds to the people, and praying to Elohim always.

Cornelius was a gentile. The Yehudim of that day looked at the gentiles as being unclean. (Acts 10:28) Remember this.

(3) He clearly saw in a vision, about the ninth hour of the day, a messenger of Elohim coming to him, and saying to him, “Cornelius!”
(4) And looking intently at him, and becoming afraid, he said, “What is it, master?” And he said to him, “Your prayers and your kind deeds have come up for a remembrance before Elohim.
(5) “And now send men to Yapho, and send for Shimon who is also called Kepha.
(6) “He is staying with Shimon, a leather-tanner, whose house is by the sea.”

Cornelius had a vision first. He was sent to Shimon Kepha. Remember that Cornelius is a gentile and that the Yehudim looked at the gentiles as being unclean so now Shimon Kepha needs to be warned that Cornelius was sent to him by Yahuah. How would Shimon Kepha be warned? Think about it as we continue.

(7) And when the messenger who spoke to him went away, Cornelius called two of his household servants, and a dedicated soldier from among those who waited on him continually.
(8) And having explained to them all, he sent them to Yapho.

Cornelius sent people to Shimon Kepha.

(9) And on the next day, as they were on their way and approaching the city, Kepha went up on the house-top to pray, about the sixth hour.

While they were on their way to Shimon Kepha we start seeing what is happening to Shimon Kepha. Let us see what happens next.
(10) And he became hungry and wished to eat. But while they were preparing, he fell into a trance,
(11) and he saw the heaven opened and a certain vessel like a great sheet bound at the four corners, descending to him and let down to the earth,
(12) in which were all kinds of four-footed beasts of the earth, and wild beasts, and creeping creatures, and the birds of the heaven.
(13) And a voice came to him, “Rise up, Kepha, slay and eat.”
(14) But Kepha said, “Not at all, Master! Because I have never eaten whatever is common or unclean.”
(15) And a voice came to him again the second time, “What Elohim has cleansed you do not consider common.”
(16) And this took place three times, and the vessel was taken back to the heaven.

There are several things we need to note in this vision. It was unclean animals which were dropped down. Shimon Kepha NEVER ate unclean animals up to this point which makes one think that Yeshua never said anything about being allowed to eat animals which were said to be unclean in Lev 23 after he has died. The animals were pulled back up without him even touching anything. This happened 3x which reminds me of Yeshua’s 3x days before resurrection.

(17) And while Kepha was doubting within himself about what the vision might mean, look, the men who had been sent from Cornelius, having asked for the house of Shimon, stood at the gate,
(18) and calling out, they enquired whether Shimon, also known as Kepha, was staying there.

Shimon Kepha himself doubted what the vision could mean. Surely it was not that obvious to him what the meaning was.

(19) And as Kepha was thinking about the vision, the Spirit said to him, “See, three men seek you.

The vision happened 3x times. Once for every man seeking him.

(20) “But rise up, go down and go with them, not doubting at all, for I have sent them.”
(21) So Kepha went down to the men who had been sent to him from Cornelius, and said, “Look, I am the one you seek. Why have you come?”
(22) And they said, “Cornelius the captain, a righteous man and one who fears Elohim and well spoken of by the entire nation of the Yehudim, was instructed by a set-apart messenger to send for you to his house, and to hear words from you.”
(23) So inviting them in, he housed them. And on the next day Kepha went away with them, and some brothers from Yapho went with him.

The three men was to bring Shimon Kepha to Cornelius. Shimon Kepha and others went with them.

(24) And the following day they entered into Caesarea. And Cornelius was waiting for them, having called together his relatives and close friends.
(25) And it came to be, that when Kepha entered, Cornelius met him and fell down at his feet and bowed before him.
(26) But Kepha raised him up, saying, “Stand up, I myself am also a man.”
(27) And talking with him, he went in and found many who had come together.
(28) And he said to them, “You know that a Yehudite man is not allowed to associate with, or go to one of another race. But Elohim has shown me that I should not call any man common or unclean.
(29) “That is why I came without hesitation when I was sent for. So I ask, why have you sent for me?”

Here Shimon Kepha clearly says what the vision meant. The unclean animals referred ro the gentiles coming to fetch him which Yeshua cleansed with His blood.

(30) And Cornelius said, “Four days ago I was fasting until this hour. And at the ninth hour I prayed in my house, and see, a man stood before me in shining garments,
(31) and said, ‘Cornelius, your prayer has been heard, and your kind deeds were remembered before Elohim.
(32) ‘Now send to Yapho and call Shimon here, who is also called Kepha. He is staying in the house of Shimon, a leather-tanner, by the sea. When he comes, he shall speak to you.’
(33) “So I sent to you immediately, and you have done well to come. And now, we are all present before Elohim, to hear all that you have been commanded by Elohim.”
(34) And opening his mouth, Kepha said, “Truly I see that Elohim shows no partiality,
(35) but in every nation, he who fears Him and works righteousness is accepted by Him.
(36) “He sent the word to the children of Yisra’el, bringing the Good News: peace through Yeshua Messiah! He is Master of all.
(37) “You know what word came to be throughout all Yehudah, beginning from Galil after the immersion which Yohanan proclaimed:
(38) how Elohim did anoint Yeshua of Natsareth with the Set-apart Spirit and with power, who went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for Elohim was with Him.
(39) “And we are witnesses of all He did, both in the country of the Yehudim and in Yerushalayim, whom they even killed by hanging on a timber.
(40) “Elohim raised up this One on the third day, and let Him be seen,
(41) not to all the people, but to witnesses, those having been chosen before by Elohim – to us who ate and drank with Him after He arose from the dead.
(42) “And He commanded us to proclaim to the people, and to witness that it is He who was appointed by Elohim to be Judge of the living and the dead.
(43) “To this One all the prophets bear witness, that through His Name, everyone believing in Him does receive forgiveness of sins.”
(44) While Kepha was still speaking these words, the Set-apart Spirit fell upon all those hearing the word.
(45) And those of the circumcision who believed were astonished, as many as came with Kepha, because the gift of the Set-apart Spirit had been poured out on the gentiles also,
(46) for they were hearing them speaking with tongues and extolling Elohim. Then Kepha answered,
(47) “Is anyone able to forbid water, that these should not be immersed who have received the Set-apart Spirit – even as also we?”
(48) And he commanded them to be immersed in the Name of Yeshua Messiah. Then they asked him to remain a few days.

The last verses shows what happened when Shimon Kepha was with Cornelius. He shared the Good Message of Salvation and they received the set apart spirit and was immersed.

After this Shimon Kepha went back and told the whole story to the emissaries and brothers who were in Yehudah.

Act 11:1-30
(1) And the emissaries and brothers who were in Yehudah heard that the gentiles also received the word of Elohim.
(2) And when Kepha went up to Yerushalayim, those of the circumcision were contending with him,
(3) saying, “You went in to uncircumcised men and ate with them!

This reaction to Shimon Kepha’s experience proves that the vision showed him that Yeshua cleansed the gentiles. The people was upset with Shimon Kepha that he ate with gentiles. So he explaines everything.

(4) But Kepha began and set it forth in order, saying:
(5) “I was in the city of Yapho praying. And in a trance I saw a vision, a certain vessel descending like a great sheet, let down from the heaven by four corners, and it came to me.

When Yeshua comes He will bring His bride from the four corners of the heavens. Read the rest slowly and note what we have seen already.

(6) “Having looked into it, I perceived and I saw four-footed beasts of the earth, and wild beasts, and creeping creatures, and the birds of heaven.
(7) “And I heard a voice saying to me, ‘Rise up, Kepha, slay and eat.’
(8) “But I said, ‘Not at all, Master! Because whatever is common or unclean has never entered into my mouth.’
(9) “And the voice answered me again from the heaven, ‘What Elohim has cleansed you do not consider common.’
(10) “And this took place three times, and all were drawn up again into the heaven.
(11) “And see, immediately three men stood before the house where I was, having been sent to me from Caesarea.
(12) “And the Spirit said to me to go with them, not doubting at all. And these six brothers also went with me, and we went into the man’s house.
(13) “And he told us how he had seen a messenger standing in his house, who said to him, ‘Send men to Yapho, and call for Shimon who is also called Kepha,
(14) who shall speak to you words, by which you shall be saved, you and all your house.’
(15) “And as I began to speak, the Set-apart Spirit fell upon them, as upon us at the beginning.
(16) “And I remembered the word of the Master, how He said, ‘Yohanan indeed immersed in water, but you shall be immersed in the Set-apart Spirit.’
(17) “So if Elohim gave them the same gift as He gave us when we believed on the Master Yeshua Messiah, how was I able to withstand Elohim?
(18) And having heard this, they were silent, and praised Elohim, saying, “Then Elohim has indeed also given to the gentiles repentance to life.”
(19) Then, indeed, they who were scattered because of the pressure that arose over Stephanos passed through to Phoenicia, and Cyprus, and Antioch, speaking the word to no one except the Yehudim only.
(20) But some of them were men from Cyprus and Cyrene, who, when they had come to Antioch, spoke to the Hellenists, bringing the Good News: the Master Yeshua!
(21) And the hand of the Master was with them, and a great number having believed turned to the Master.
(22) And word of it came to the ears of the assembly in Yerushalayim, and they sent out Barnabah to go as far as Antioch,
(23) who, having come, and seeing the favour of Elohim, was glad, and encouraged them all with purpose of heart to cleave to the Master.
(24) Because he was a good man, and filled with the Set-apart Spirit and with belief. And large numbers were added to the Master.
(25) Then Barnabah went to Tarsos to seek Sha’ul,
(26) and having found him, he brought him to Antioch. And it came to be that for an entire year they came together in the assembly and taught large numbers. And the taught ones were called ‘Messianites’ first in Antioch.
(27) And in those days prophets came from Yerushalayim to Antioch.
(28) And one of them, named Hagab, stood up and indicated by the Spirit that there was going to be a great scarcity of food over all the world – which also took place under Claudius Caesar.
(29) So the taught ones, each according to his ability, decided to send relief to the brothers dwelling in Yehudah.
(30) This they also did, and sent it to the elders by the hands of Barnabah and Sha’ul.

Therefore, in closing, the vision of Shimon Kepha has nothing to do with food and what we are able to eat or not. It rather speaks of Yeshua’s amazingly good message of salvation and how people have been washed from their sins. Now to follow in Yeshua’s foot steps and as Yeshua kept saying “go and sin no more”

Until next time.

Shalom

Mieke

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