“There was a certain man in Caesarea called Cornelius, a centurion of the band called the Italian band,
A devout man, and one that feared God with all his house, which gave much alms to the people, and prayed to God always” (Acts 10:1-2)
The book of Acts contains examples of people being saved by the grace of God. These people have been converted (1 Thes. 1:9). Cornelius, the centurion, is one such example of conversion. What truths about conversion can we learn from Cornelius?
First, we learn that from his PAST that he was lost. Peter came to tell him words in order to save him (Acts 11:14). It did not matter that he was doing some things that were considered godly. He was separated from God and needed to be converted.
Second, his conversion shows that PREPARATION was made (Acts 10:24-29). He had to send for Peter. He had to wait for the messenger of the gospel to arrive. If we are lost may we be humble enough to call for help. It is essential that one be hear, learn and obey (John 6:44, 45) if he is going to be converted. He was also concerned about others. He gathered his relatives and friends so that they might be converted.
Third, there is the need for PREACHING in conversion. God chose the “preaching of the gospel” to save (1 Cor. 1:18). Cornelius had to hear the saving message of Jesus (Acts 11:14; Rom. 10:14). Without it he would remain lost.
Fourth, conversion involves a PURPOSE. Why does one need to be converted? What does it do? Why not stay where you are? Conversion means that one is made a child of God (John 3:3-5). Conversion results in the remission of sins (Acts 2:38). When one is converted he is added to the church (Acts 2:47). Without being converted one will remain lost (Col. 1:13).
Finally, one learns about the PRIORITY of conversion. Cornelius could not wait. He could not delay. To procrastinate would risk his soul (2 Cor. 6:2). Paul was asked why he waited (Acts 22:16).
Are you ready to be converted?