Bible Reading: 1 Peter 1:3-12
“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! According to his great mercy, he has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading.” (1 Peter 1:3-4)
Peter wrote his first epistles to the “elect exiles” in the diaspora of the Roman world at that time. They were not physical exiles, but they were spiritual exiles. They were God’s people separated by a distance that all shared the same faith, same heart, and persecution. This was a time of suffering because of the outward persecution and the constant threat and hardship of being Christ’s follower.
Today, as Christians, we are spiritual exiles on the earth. Our home and citizenship belong in heaven. Although we do not face the degree of persecution the early churches did, it does not mean we fit in perfectly. The world will hate us either way. That were Jesus’ words. The world considers our religion a myth. The world is not concerned about what is right or wrong. When we stand up for the truth of God, the world shuts its ears to us.
Day by day, sometimes we feel sick of it. Perseverance cannot go on forever, right? Things don’t seem to line up in life. It has all become complicated. My friends regard me as weird, and I am socially put aside. This all hasn’t taken into account my personal failures and sins, which hinder me and pull me away from God. At times it all feels too much. Is this true?
Peter encourages us once again to meditate on the essence of our faith. We believe in Jesus Christ. He came to earth out of His great mercy for you and me. He died on the cross, and from His death, he caused us to be born again. And, when He did this, he did it so that we would have a living hope, i.e. a 100% trustworthy hope for restoration in the resurrection of Christ. Because Christ rose and defeated death, our hope in Jesus and future grace in heaven is secure. It is imperishable, undefiled and unfading.
Moreover, our living hope is held secure at this time by God’s power. God continually guards our faith so that we would never fall away from Him. He is faithful and holds our faith for salvation, ready to be revealed when He comes back.
In these times where we feel life just has to drudge on, 1 Peter instructs us to rejoice. We can and must rejoice because all of these trials which God gives tests the genuineness of our faith. The more we are tested and refined, the more God will get the glory, praise and honour. To this end, we were created, and in this end, God promises that as we believe, we will “rejoice with joy that is inexpressible and [be] filled with glory” (1 Peter 1:8).
This is our living hope to which we ought to cling to. Although Kronos seems to be the same mundane routine, tiring us out and testing our perseverance day by day, God is working actively to advance His glory, praise and honour in His grand master plan for the universe. God is never dormant. He is actively working though we cannot see it. Day by day, we are growing and marching one step closer to Zion, the place where our hope will be fulfilled. Set your eyes to that day. Fix it in your eyeballs.
1 Peter 2:13 says, “set your hope fully on the grace that will be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ”. Once our hearts and hopes have been set, set out actions and will toward holiness. That way, our days and Kronos on earth will not be wasted and mundane. It will be a continual walking with God, step by step, until the full glory of our hope is revealed.
Lord, thank You for our living hope in Jesus Christ. Thank You that You have died for my sins and have fully forgiven me. Thank You that our hope is living and imperishable. Thank You that You are faithful and guarding my faith by Your own power. Teach me to rest in You and trust in Your Truth. Teach me to rejoice and be content in You. Give me a holy zeal to live out each day walking and obeying You. Lead me as I step closer to Zion each day. In Jesus’ name, amen.