1 Peter

 Aliens or Ambassadors?

1 Peter is addressed to Christians who are scattered like salt throughout Galatia, Asia, and the surrounding areas. As they live in their respective areas they are God’s ambassadors to the people. As a result they and we as Christians interact with the culture. It is clear that we are to be different. Peter said we are to be holy in Chapter 1 verses 14&15. No longer are we to be adapting ourselves to the prevailing culture. We are to be “set apart” from the culture. This is the primary meaning of being holy, but how can we be holy?

Peter tells us we are to be holy because God is holy. At first we might think this is impossible, and it is if we try to accomplish this on our own. However, back in verse 2 Peter tells us that we have been given the Holy Spirit who is working in us for our sanctification setting us apart for God’s work. Peter makes clear that we were given the Holy Spirit based on our giving our lives to Christ Jesus in verses 3-12 of Chapter 1. So Peter is reminding us of what God has done and our commitment to Him. Based on this fact, Peter follows with at least 6 places where he starts an instruction with the word, “therefore,” each one building upon the saving grace of God through His Son Jesus with the help of the Holy Spirit in our life. So we can be holy because the one in us and leading us, the Holy Spirit, is Holy. Instead of working to be holy on our own we need to do as we did when we surrendered our life to Christ Jesus. We need to surrender our life to the leading of the Holy Spirit.

The six places where Peter uses the word “therefore” shows that God desired us to be set apart or holy in every aspect of our life. There are places where we are to give up some of the old ways. There are also areas where we are to do things differently. But all of these are based first on our relationship and commitment to Christ, and second, the surrender of our will to the leading of the Holy Spirit who lives and leads from within us. When we follow the lead of the Holy Spirit He will do in us what we cannot do on our own. But in order for Him to bring about that transforming sanctification we must let Him direct our life by faith. We need to learn to listen for His voice and follow when He leads.

So as we continue to read 1 Peter I pray we will hear His voice. His work is to transform us into the likeness of Christ and use our life as a witness to the world. Colossians 1:24-29

Pastor Dave