In Acts 10, Luke tells us it was on the roof of this beautiful ancient house by the sea in Joppa (modern day Jaffa) that Peter had a vision which reached the Gentiles with the saving truth of the Gospel. The story goes like this:
About noon the following day as they were on their journey and approaching the city, Peter went up on the roof to pray. He became hungry and wanted something to eat, and while the meal was being prepared, he fell into a trance. He saw heaven opened and something like a large sheet being let down to earth by its four corners. It contained all kinds of four-footed animals, as well as reptiles and birds. Then a voice told him, “Get up, Peter. Kill and eat.” “Surely not, Lord!” Peter replied. “I have never eaten anything impure or unclean.” The voice spoke to him a second time, “Do not call anything impure that God has made clean.” This happened three times, and immediately the sheet was taken back to heaven. (vv.9-16)
Through this vision, God was teaching Peter (the Jew), and even us today, that Jesus came to die and save everyone who would believe in Him. After meeting such a group of believing Gentiles (non-Jews) in Caesarea, the vision began to make sense to Peter. Listen to his interpretation of the vision:
“I now realize how true it is that God does not show favoritism but accepts from every nation the one who fears him and does what is right…Everyone who believes in [Jesus] receives forgiveness of sins through his name.” (vv.34, 43)
Now if that isn’t good news, I’m not sure what is!