We praise and thank you because at all times and through all things You show us Your great mercy and love. Open our eyes and our understanding to what we are about to study. Help us to see that You have created us and called us out for Your purposes and nothing can thwart this calling. Strengthen our hearts so that we may know that no matter the opposition or trials, these as well are according to what has been permitted by You for Your purposes and desires. Make us to know that Your faithfulness does not fail and that Your eye is upon all those who wear the name of Your Son, Jesus Christ, our Savior and King. As we study First and Second Peter, make us to find Your joy in the suffering and we pray this in Jesus’ Name, amen.
1 Peter 1:1-12 (Sam)
Peter wrote this letter to Christians being persecuted in the area of modern day Turkey. He wrote that before the persecution started they had been chosen of God by the Holy Spirit so that they might obey Christ. Chosen of God and yet, rejected and persecuted by the world. How do we grasp something like this?
Scripture does tell us that all who live godly in Christ (i.e. believe and live out the gospel)will suffer persecution. (2 Tim.3:12) Persecution could be in many forms and sometimes it might even result in death; but greater and more powerful is the mercy which God had on us that rescued us from eternal death and has made us to know that we have a living hope given to us by the resurrection of Christ. (1 Peter 1:3-5)
If the trial and refining of our faith is great, can you imagine how great the results will be? Imagine the praise and the honor God will receive when Christ is revealed to the world for who He is. Then where will those who sought to hurt us hide? Where will they seek refuge when they find out that they were but tools in the hands of the One they denied and sought to kill?
How do we know these things are true? They were written down for us by eyewitnesses and by those who were moved by the Holy Spirit. They wrote about them and wanted to understand these things but we, however have the opportunity to read about these truths, understand them and live them out IF we obey. Imagine the joy to rejoice in heaven with all the Church in the presence of Christ. It certainly will be worth it all. (1 Peter 1:10-12)
Father, we praise you for who you are and thank you for the way you saved us. Everything you do declares your glory. Continue to purge us and bring us into your presence and make us to delight in you forever. Lord Jesus, change us and make us according to your will. Amen.