Father in heaven, help me to love Your Word more, to read it more, and to long to have my thoughts and actions informed and corrected by it. Make my life a good advertisement for following Jesus. Help me live for the future. In Jesus’ name, amen.
Read 1 Peter 2:1-3:7
1 Peter 2:1–10 Because Christians have been chosen to live holy, obedient, loving lives, we must get rid of evil intentions and evil speech. Like babies, we should desire the milk of God’s Word. That is how we grow in Christ, by drinking and digesting the Word of God often and letting it nourish our souls.
The world and Christ’s enemies may try to shame believers by disowning them and excluding them. In this way, Christians need not fret, for Christ was also rejected by men but chosen by God. Scripture says those who believe in Christ will not be put to shame but will be honored. In this life, it may not look that way, but in the end it’s the unbelieving rebels who will be shamed because they stumble over Christ.
Followers of Jesus are God’s chosen people, like the King’s own priests chosen to proclaim His praises. After all, He’s made them totally new, given them a new life. Christians have received mercy from God’s own hand. That’s honor, not shame!
1 Peter 2:11–17 Followers of Jesus embrace personal holiness. They live differently by being good people, and they do not indulge bad desires or follow evil inclinations, which destroy a person’s soul. Because of this, Christians shouldn’t try to fit into the world’s lifestyle patterns. Do good works so that outsiders will glorify God for your good life.
In fact, if you do good and are submissive to human authorities, your lives will show the empty foolishness of people’s lies about Christians. That’s why Peter tells these believers to honor everyone, even those who shame you.
1 Peter 2:18–3:7 This gospel transforms how believers relate to other people—both good and bad.
Peter encourages household slaves to endure good and bad masters since suffering for doing good is frequently the lot of Christ-followers. Christ suffered like this also, fulfilling the Old Testament Scriptures.
As the gospel is proclaimed in pioneer areas, some wives may become Christ-followers while their husbands still refuse to believe. This is also a kind of suffering to be endured, and Peter urges these wives to have gentle and quiet spirits and to put their hope in God while serving their husbands and perhaps winning them over by living and serving well. Husbands, too, should be understanding of their wives and honor their wives who are also heirs of grace. Otherwise, a husband’s prayers may be hindered by his harshness and failure to honor his wife.
1 Peter 2:11-12
11 Beloved, I urge you as sojourners and exiles to abstain from the passions of the flesh, which wage war against your soul.12 Keep your conduct among the Gentiles honorable, so that when they speak against you as evildoers, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day of visitation.
- The Holy Spirit enables followers of Jesus to stop being so self-centered and relate well to others, even people who make life difficult or are hostile toward Christ and His church. Prayerfully determine to respond to the difficult people in your life with Christian love.
- There will always be opponents of Christ and His followers but the lives of Christians should not bring dishonor to the gospel. Live and speak in such a way so that you are blameless before others.
- Talk with a fellow disciple and plan ways to be regularly blessing the difficult people in your life. Then pray together and implement a plan to bless others.
- What have you learned about Fear/Power or Honor/Shame areas of gospel application with your new friends? How does the gospel address these issues? [Making Disciples, All Peoples]