Contrast and Choices
Lord, You are the God of all days and seasons. Thank You for this season of new life, reminding me of my new life in You. I love You.
Read 1 Peter 1:13-21
Scripture taken from the THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION, NIV Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
“Without blemish” (19). Let this description of Jesus inspire your own ambitions for your life today.
Setting our hearts on the living hope in Christ has far-reaching implications. It affects how we live now. For there should be no discontinuity between the grace we are hoping to receive and the things we treasure in our everyday affairs. Living in faith means we see things differently; our value-system is not the same as it once was. We must resist conforming to previous patterns and aspire to holiness in everything we do.
This is no abstract cliché. Being in step with the call of the Gospel on our lives usually means being out of step with the mindset of our culture. This has not really changed since the time Peter was writing. Believers are those who call on God as “Father” to give them direction and guidance. This contrasts with the prevailing ethos, which is simply to live as we see fit. All too often, the concerns of daily existence and obsession with stuff crowd out the ability to see what is fitting and what really matters. Peter contrasts the ultimate emptiness of “silver or gold” (18)–key emblems of every materialist culture–with the preciousness of Christ’s body and blood, surrendered for us. The choice set before Christians is whether to follow cultural values or live as cultural strangers: disciples of Jesus and accountable before God.
Peter can’t stop talking about Christ and his significance. His holiness and perfection are unique; his relationship with the Father existed before creation; his sacrificial love for us draws us into belief in God; and his resurrection guarantees our own hope. We are on this earth for a short time only, but God’s plan is cosmic and his timescale eternal. When we see our time and lives in the light of Christ’s eternity, we realize our ultimate value.
How does Peter define holiness (13-16)? Peter describes the life of the believers in the world as strangers here (17). Various translations use terms such as aliens, foreigners, sojourners, or resident exiles. How do you understand this view of the Christian’s life in the world?
Lord, help me to reassess the things in culture that drag me away from You and release me from their bondage.
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