Lesson Scripture: 1st PETER 1: 13-25
13 Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and hope to the end for the grace that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ; 14 As obedient children, not fashioning yourselves according to the former lusts in your ignorance: 15 But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation; 16 Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.
Peter in this epistle encourages a congregation who are in the mist of persecution. He writes this letter from Rome. In this letter he describes the state of early Christians as he compares it to the Jewish Gentile Christians. They are spread throughout the Roman Empire. They were in the mist of everyday persecution. Peter offers encouragement, he affirms that the church lives in a world where by the Kingdom of God has broken into the world but not yet fully realized.
This is a letter of hope that sustains the Christians in the mist of all trials and tribulations.
I. BE YE HOLY; FOR I AM HOLY (1st Peter 1: 13-16)
Peter indicates, that because of the grace of God, we have been given marching orders, by that same grace, we are to prepare our minds for action. He states that we as Christians, we have been redeemed. We prepare ourselves by being holy, holy in the manner of our conversation. Christ died, that we may be holy. He promised to send the comforter, the Holy Spirit to indwell in all who are united to him by faith. Holiness is not an option.
II. A GREAT PRICE WAS PAID FOR YOU (vv. 17-25)
As Peter continues to encourage, he says that holiness has to be the framework within which we consider our decisions. Peter reminds us not to be holy in some of our conduct but in all of our conduct. Only through the word of God, consistent prayer and the leading of the holy spirit as well as the support of the Christian community can we obtain self-interrogation. A great price was paid.
There is the misconception that to be holy is to have an out of world experience. To be over, up, and beyond everyday living. It is true that we are in the world but as a child of God, we are not of the world. Peter here calls for us to keep in mind that we are to refrain from certain conversations that are not in line with the word of God. It’s not always what goes in us, but it’s what comes out of us. Our speech should always be above board, In other words, we are to “Live Holy Lives”
Rev. Johnny H. Eskridge | St. Paul Baptist Church @ Shively Heights | Louisville, Kentucky