1 Now in Caesarea there was a man called Cornelius, a captain in the Italian regiment, 2 a religious man, who reverenced God with all his household, who was liberal in his alms to the People, and who constantly prayed to God. 3 About three o'clock in the afternoon he distinctly saw in a vision an angel of God entering and saying to him, "Cornelius."
4 He stared at the angel in terror, saying, "What is it?" He replied, "Your prayers and your alms have risen before God as a sacrifice to be remembered. 5 You must now send some men to Joppa for a certain Simon who is surnamed Peter; 6 he is staying with Simon a tanner, whose house stands by the sea."
7 When the angel who spoke to him had left, he called two of his menservants and a religiously minded soldier who belonged to his personal retinue, 8 and after describing all the vision to them, he sent them to Joppa.
9 Next day they were still on the road and not far from the town, when Peter went up to the roof of the house about noon to pray. 10 He became very hungry and longed for some food. But as they were getting the meal ready, a trance came over him. 11 He saw heaven open and a vessel coming down, like a huge sheet lowered by the four corners to the earth, 12 which contained all quadrupeds and creeping things of the earth and wild birds. 13 A voice came to him, "Rise, Peter, kill and eat."
14 But Peter said, "No, no, my Lord; I have never eaten anything common or unclean."
15 A second time the voice came back to him, "What God has cleansed, you must not regard as common." 16 This happened three times; then the vessel was at once raised to heaven.
17 Peter was quite at a loss to know the meaning of the vision he had seen; but just then, the messengers of Cornelius, who had made inquiries for the house of Simon, stood at the door 18 and called out to ask if Simon, surnamed Peter, was staying there.
19 So the Spirit said to Peter, who was pondering over the vision, "There are three men looking for you! 20 Come, get up and go down, and have no hesitation about accompanying them, for it is I who have sent them."
21 Then Peter went down to the men, saying, "I am the man you are looking for. What is your reason for coming?"
22 They said, "Cornelius, a captain, a good man who reverences God and enjoys a good reputation among the whole Jewish nation, was instructed by a holy angel to send for you to his house and to listen to what you had to say." 23 So he invited them in and entertained them. Next day he was up and off with them, accompanied by some of the brothers from Joppa; 24 and on the next day he reached Caesarea. [vs 24b transposed to follow vs 27] (For Cornelius had been expecting him and had called his kinsfolk and intimate friends together.) 25 Peter was just going into the house when Cornelius met him, fell at his feet, and worshipped him;
26 but Peter raised him, saying, "Get up, I am only a man myself." 27 Then talking to him he entered the house, to find a large company assembled. 28 To them Peter said, "You know yourselves it is illegal for a Jew to join or accost anyone belonging to another nation; but God has shown me that I must not call any man common or unclean, 29 and so I have come without any demur when I was sent for. Now I want to know why you sent for me?"
30 "Three days ago," said Cornelius, "at this very hour I was praying in my house at three o'clock in the afternoon, when a man stood before me in shining dress, 31 saying, 'Cornelius, your prayer has been heard, your alms are remembered by God. 32 You must send to Joppa and summon Simon who is surnamed Peter; he is staying in the house of Simon a tanner beside the sea.' 33 So I sent for you at once, and you have been kind enough to come. Well now, here we are all present before God to listen to what the Lord has commanded you to say."
34 Then Peter opened his lips and said, "I see quite plainly that God has no favourites, 35 but that he who reverences Him and lives a good life in any nation is welcomed by Him. 36 You know the message he sent to the sons of Israel when he preached the gospel of peace by Jesus Christ (who is Lord of all); 37 you know how it spread over the whole of Judaea, starting from Galilee after the baptism preached by John ??38 how God consecrated Jesus of Nazaret with the holy Spirit and power, and how he went about doing good and curing all who were harassed by the devil; for God was with him. 39 As for what he did in the land of the Jews and of Jerusalem, we can testify to that. They slew him by hanging him on a gibbet, 40 but God raised him on the third day, and allowed him to be seen 41 not by all the People but by witnesses whom God had previously selected, by us who ate and drank with him after his resurrection from the dead, 42 when he enjoined us to preach to the People, testifying that this was he whom God has appointed to be judge of the living and of the dead. 43 All the prophets testify that everyone who believes in him is to receive remission of sins through his Name."
44 While Peter was still speaking, the holy Spirit fell upon all who listened to what he said. 45 Now the Jewish believers who had accompanied Peter were amazed that the gift of the holy Spirit had actually been poured out on the Gentiles ??46 for they heard them speak with 'tongues' and magnify God. At this Peter asked, 47 "Can anyone refuse water for the baptism of these people ??people who have received the holy Spirit just as we ourselves have?" 48 And he ordered them to be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ. Then they begged him to remain for some days.