Thursday, April 23, 2020

1 Peter 1:13-25

13-14 So, clear your heads and engage your brains. As you're doing that, make the coming appearance of Jesus Christ the focus of all your hopes and aspirations. For the extent of God's kindness will be revealed at that point and you will start to realize how generous he is. IOW, instead of sliding back into the old ways (where you couldn't help but give into every craving and desire) behave yourselves like obedient children.

15 Live lives completely and exclusively dedicated to divine service. This is the life for which God chose you. 16 In Leviticus 19:2 God says, “Since I'm all about a purpose that is exclusively different from the goals of the world, so you must be, too.”

17 Don't go thinking that the heavenly Father (the one to whom you direct your prayers) will let you get away with all kinds of mischief because you're his "favorite child." In this sense God has no "favorites" to whom he turns a blind eye. Certainly not! As sure as he rewards obedient behavior he will not put up with sloppy living. So you must revere and honor him during your time here in this strange place where you don't fit in. 18 You realize, don't you, that God actually paid a lot to get you out of this hell-hole life into which you were born. And we're not talking about money. You weren't ransomed with gold or silver 19 but with the precious blood of the chosen one -- the faultless and perfect sacrificial Lamb who came from God. 20 This was no after-thought on God's part. Long before the world began he had already designated the chosen one to be the ransom for us. But now, in these last days, way down the pipeline of history, God has revealed him to us. 21 Through this chosen one, raised by God from death and lavished with glorious honor, you have started to put your trust in God. And, indeed, you have remained faithful to him.

22 You've cleaned up your lives by acting on the truth. So now take the next step and start living out genuine love amongst your Christian siblings. Let the love freely flow from the depths of your purified being. 23-24 For you have been born all over again into a life that is endless. The old life ends at death, but your new life, triggered by the unending enduring message from God, will last forever. As we read in Isaiah 40:6-8,
“People are in their prime for such a brief time -- really when you think about it, no different than the grass, or a beautiful flower in a field. How long does the grass last before it withers or the flower before it fades and dries up?

25 In contrast -- and here's the point -- God's word is constant from now and through all eternity.”
And this message from God is our Good News for you.