HOLINESS

I Peter 1:1-13 ~~ 1: Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, To God’s elect, strangers in the world, scattered throughout 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, for obedience to Jesus Christ and sprinkling by 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—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. 6: In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. 7: These have come so that your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may be proved genuine and may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed. 8: Though you have not seen Him, you love Him; and even though you do not see Him now, you believe in Him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy, 9: for you are receiving the goal of your faith, the salvation of your souls. 10; Concerning this salvation, the prophets, who spoke of the grace that was to come to you, searched intently and with the greatest of care, 11:  trying to find out the time and circumstances to which the Spirit of Christ in them was pointing when He predicted the sufferings of Christ and the glories that would follow. 12: It was revealed to them that they were not serving themselves but you, when they spoke of the things that have now been told you by those who have preached the gospel to you by the Holy Spirit sent from heaven. Even angels long to look into these things. 13: Therefore, prepare your minds for action; be self-controlled; set you hope fully on the grace to be given you when Jesus Christ is revealed. 14: As obedient children, do not conform to the evil desires you had when you lived in ignorance. 15: But just as He who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do; 16: for it is written: Be holy, for I am holy.  

First of all, I need to apologize to Curt for writing on three of the verses that are included in his reading for tomorrow. I am not sure he is writing on I Peter tomorrow, but in case he does, I wanted to get my apology out of the way. I had a Bible professor at Wheaton that labeled the first thirteen verses of this chapter as the preamble to verses fourteen through sixteen. These last three verses he called the meat of the chapter… Holiness. I can remember when repentance and holiness were an integral part of the salvation message. Repentance of course is the turning away from a sinful life with a holy life being what you were turning toward. We have substituted an easy belief lifestyle in its place. This lifestyle seems to be a greenlight to live as you like, doing whatever is right in your own eyes with very little cost involved. As we can see from this passage, I do not think that Peter would agree.

Again, my apologies to Curt, I should have asked. Have a great Thanksgiving! And think on this passage. He did so much for us, is holiness on our part too much to ask?

by Paul Kightlinger, Elder

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