Lent – Day 30: Tuesday, 23 March
1 Peter 1:1-5
Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ,
To God’s elect, exiles, scattered throughout the provinces of Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia and Bithynia, 2 who have been chosen according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through the sanctifying work of the Spirit, to be obedient to Jesus Christ and sprinkled with his blood:
Grace and peace be yours in abundance.
3 Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, 4 and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade. This inheritance is kept in heaven for you, 5 who through faith are shielded by God’s power until the coming of the salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last time.
Peter in a short opening addressee section (“To …”) weaves together the three persons of God in this letter to churches spread around what we know today as Turkey but was then Roman provinces.
He tells them that they are chosen and Father God was pre-aware of their election. This in itself may bring up some interesting discussion between the Calvinists and non-Calvinists. It would be odd to think that my choice to follow Christ is somehow fore-ordained. Another reading of this is to suggest that God has offered the fullness of his love to each of us – he knows us intimately and desires that we share eternity with him, for that is his plan – but we may still choose to accept or reject the offer.
The work of the Holy Spirit is to make us holy. His indwelling (taking up residence in us) enables us (this is far more powerful than helping us) to become like Christ in thought, word and deed. A popular phrase, “what would Jesus do?”, is invoked in any situation where we find ourselves with a range of options or are considering a particular course of action. The indwelling Holy Spirit is there in us, to prompt us. Holiness is all about being set apart for God, giving him the first option on everything.
When we know what Jesus would do, then we also know what he’d have us do. In personal life do we want to project Christ to the world, or do we think we have some better plan?
This is an amazing start to a letter. Surely Peter has said it all already. Read on, and see if he has,
What are the implications of Father God knowing beforehand that I would choose to follow Christ?
Who would Jesus have you be? What needs to change?
What is the incorruptible inheritance that awaits you?
Father God, Lord Jesus, Holy Spirit, you are my God, my Saviour, my Holiness. I want to know you in all aspects of your nature in all aspects of my life. I choose holiness and obedience. Amen