Saturday, December 17, 2011

Set yourself apart! - December 17th, 2011

13 Therefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and rest your hope fully upon the grace that is to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ; 14 as obedient children, not conforming yourselves to the former lusts, as in your ignorance; 15 but as He who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, 16 because it is written, “Be holy, for I am holy.”
17 And if you call on the Father, who without partiality judges according to each one’s work, conduct yourselves throughout the time of your stay here in fear; 18 knowing that you were not redeemed with corruptible things, like silver or gold, from your aimless conduct received by tradition from your fathers, 19 but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot.
1 Peter 1:13-19

History and Context:
1 Peter 1:1 says, "Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, to the pilgrims of the Dispersion in Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia". From this we get the author of the letter, Peter, and the recipients of the letter, those dispersed among the five provinces of Asia minor. The author doesn't specifically say whether he is speaking to the Jews in those areas or the Gentiles. Peter was a man known for his passion and not always for his control. He was one of the inner three of Jesus' disciples. One of three to experience the transfiguration (Matthew 17), and one of three to be brought further in the Garden of Gethsemene (Matthew 26:37).

The Text:
Quoting from Leviticus, Peter repeats here one of the most astounding and most difficult commands that the Lord has given us; "Be holy, for I am holy." Peter tells us that in the same way God is holy we are to be holy in everything we do. Holy means to be set apart. In other words, we are to set our conduct and our actions apart from how the world acts. We need to act in a way that sets us apart from those around us. We need to live holy in the same way that God Himself is holy. Peter makes it clear here that our actions are important in our walk with God. He says that the very fact that we have been redeemed only through the blood of Christ, a sacrifice that we didn't deserve, should keep us in a fear, or a reverence, that governs our actions to set us apart.

The Challenge:
Isn't it enough of a challenge to just repeat the Lord's words; "Be holy, for I am holy." Let us make sure that we are set apart from the world today. Keep this challenge in mind as you go through your day and ask yourself if you are conforming or settting yourself apart.

The Prayer:
Lord, I know that it is only through your grace and through the blood of your son Jesus Christ that I can truly live up to this challenge. Help me to truly be holy. Help me to truly set myself apart. In Jesus' name, Amen!

1 comment:

  1. Being apart from the world and close to God is a daily challenge for anyone, but it's so essential to do. Great post today.