1 Peter 2: 4-10
Peter teaches us about Jesus who was prophesied to be the rejected cornerstone…in Isaiah 28:16, Psalms 118:22, and Isaiah 8:14. Remember that Peter is writing to Jewish Christians. He is reminding them of the past disobedience of the Jewish people from the Old Testament up until the crucifying of Jesus. Plus, reminding them that in spite of the Jewish disobedience, He will raise up a Cornerstone that will stand, even if rejected. Believers (those who put thier trust in Jesus) will come to God’s Cornerstone and be built as living stones upon Him….into a spiritual house. They will be holy dedicated priests and bring spiritufal sacrificial offerings that will be acceptable to God. This Cornerstone will cause stumbling and offense for those who disbelieve God’s Word and disobey and reject Jesus. Followers of Jesus have become the chosen race, royal priesthoood, dedicated nation, God’s own special purchased people! Those who were once not God’s people, can now be His people and receive His mercy. They do not need to be Jews. Thnose who were once not God’s people, can now be His people and receive His mercy. How thankful is every person, Jew or Gentile, who comes to know and trust Jesus. This is so we can show the world His wonderful deeds and display His perfect virtues which reveal how He called us out of darkness and into His glorious light! So, we need to now live like God’s chosen redeemed holy people…..followers of Jesus and God’s Word.
1 Peter 2: 11-25
So then, as God’s set apart people, how should we live?
First, recognize that we are now aliens, strangers, exiles in this world. We now belong to the kingdom of God.
Abstain from sensual urges, evil desire,s passions of the flesh…from the old lower nature that still wages war in your soul.
Have honorable and righteous conduct so others can witness yoru good deeds to bring glory to God.
Be submissive to human governance and authroity. They are appointed to bring justice and punishment to wrongdoers and encourage good service.
It is God’s will and intension that by doing right and living good and honest lives that you silence foolish charges and criticisms.
Live as the free people you are! But, not towards freedom for wickedness, but rather live at all times as freely serving God in goodness.
Be respectful with all people. Love your brothers and sisters in Christ.
Reverence God in highest priority.
Be submissive and respectful to those in authority who you work under. …..not only the kind, considerate, reasonable people, but also the overbearing and unjust. For one is regarded favorably in the sight of God when they endure the pain of unjust suffering. There is no glory in suffering punishment when one does wrong. But, when one bears underserved suffering patiently, it pleases God! This is now your calling too….to follow Jesus who was abused and suffered for us. He took no vengence, but trusted Himself and everything to Him, the Father, who judges fairly.
We must die to sin and now live in righteousness (right being and right doing).
We were going away from God like stray sheep, but our Good Shepherd and Guardian of our souls brings us backl..if we follow Him.
1 Peter 3: 1-7
Here is God’s Word for wives and husbands. Ladies first…..this applies even for today’s wife. These words are a huge challenge for wives! I read them early in my marriage and worked hard at these goals. I now have great reward…married 43 years at the time of th is writing. I encourage you to checkout the Amplified version of these verses.
Wives are to adapt themselves to their husbands and be second in authority, following his leadership and decisions. So that even if he does not obey God’s Word, he can be won by the godly life of his wife. not by verbal discussion (especially nagging, arguing, persuasion, or criticism).
He will observe her purity, modesty, reverence, respect, deferring to him, appreciation of him, thankful heart, devotion, praise and encouragement of him, deep love, service, good works, and promoting enjoyment together with her husband. The main thing is not the outward adorning of make-up, hair, clothing, and jewelry. This adornment is the inward beauty ofthe hidden person of the heart. Pursue the incorruptible charm of a gentle and peaceful spirit….not anxious, worried, panicking, or being terrified, hysterical, complaining, or unnerved. This inner adornment is precious to God.
We have this example in the pious women of the Old Testament. Consider Sarah, who acknowledges Abraham’s headship and followed him. Do what is right (righteous…meaning right being and right doing).
Now, husband….be considerate of your wife, consciously remember your relationship with her at all times. Honor her as physically weaker and be her “stong arm”. She is dependent on you in many ways. But realize you are equally joint heirs in Christ, both beloved of God. Do this relationship with your wife right, or your prayers will not be effective. In other words, this is not a dictatorship relationship, but more like a Good Shepherd. Read Ephesians 5 and you will find similar instructions. The husband should love and live for his wife, giving his life and serving her, like Christ does His bride, the church! Now there is a huge challenge!
1 Peter 3: 8-9 All you special people of God, you should be of one mind and one spirit, with compassion and humble kindness for one another as brothers and sisters, just as people living in one household should be in love relationship. Never take revenge, tongue-lash, berate, or insult one another. Rather, pray for their happiness, welfare, and protection. Love them. That is what He calls us to. In that way, we also inherit a blessing for our own happiness, welfare, and protection.
1 Peter 3: 10-11
Do you want to enjoy life and see good days? Then, there are some things you need to do to get those consequences…..
Keep your tongue from evil speech and deciet (lying). The book of James has a lot to teach about good vs. evil speaking.
Turn away from wickedness (being crooked and twisted like wicker furniture) and do what is straight and right and true.
Seek peace eagerly. Peace meaning harmony and being undisturbed by fear, worry, agitating passions and emotions, and moral conflicts.
Strongly pursue peace/harmony relationship with God, with other people, and within your own soul.
This all takes intentional motivation, focus, and effort of time. I challenge you. It brings great reward!
1 Peter 3: 12
“The eyes of the Lord are upon the righteous – those who are upright and in right relationship and standing with the Lord. His ears are attentive to their prayers.” What really good news! The eyes of the Almighty are upon His people and He hears their prayers! Do you really believe Him when He says this? Do you really trust in, depend on, and rely on Him? The, why do you fear and worry? Focus on Jesus and not on teh stormy waves. Pray and trust Him. Jesus walks above the stormy waves. He will save you even if you fail!
But, the face of the Lord is against those who continually practice evil. Have you ever continually practiced something in order to get better at it? The person who purposefully and continuously practices evil is evil at heart and unrepentant. In the Amplified Bible, this verse goes on to explain why God’s face is against them…….to oppose and defeat the evil and frustrate them. Then, they might change directions and pursue God and His good ways and do His kind of good works with success!
What a good word of encouragement in our daily struggles while living in a fallen, messed up, stormy world! God is greater and his eye is upon us, His people, and HIs ear is listening when we speak with Him. My heart explodes with thanksgiving!