I wonder how many of you reading this blog believe that we are living in difficult and uncertain times. Do you find the world today unsettling? Do you ever stop to think about how you should be living in times like these? I wonder how many pastors have been preaching on that subject lately.
I have been thinking a lot lately about what God is calling me to do or say and how He is calling me to stand for Him in a world that has grown so far away from Him, denied Him, distorted Him, and defied Him. I have not been sure how to deal with it. How about you?
Well, this week my Bible study group was directed to the letters from Peter in the New Testament. The original recipients of Peter’s letters were churches in Asia Minor and he wrote to them about the importance of being diligent in holiness and reflecting the truth of their salvation in their lives. Peter and those first recipients of his letter lived in difficult times. They were experiencing persecution. They were suffering. Peter wrote to remind those suffering Christians of the importance of clinging to the truth of God’s Word and purposefully living out their salvation.
Through his letters, Peter is telling us the same thing today. We are not like the world around us. The apostle Paul described the difference between Christians and “those who have no hope” (1 Thessalonians 4:13). We are those who have great hope in the promises of God. We know that for us this world is not the end. Our Savior is coming for us and we look forward to an eternity of glory with Him. We are to live like we believe it. We are to live here and now practicing for eternity!
When you come to the end of the last chapter of Peter’s second letter, you find seven clear and specific rules for living, for practicing for eternity here and now. I typed them out and made a bookmark for my Bible so I can be reminded every day of God’s requirements for me to live my life in the hope of His promises. These are meant to be an encouragement to all believers as we live as sojourners here on the earth.
*Be of good and holy character
*Earnestly and expectantly long for the Day of God
*Set your hope on the new heaven and new earth He has promised
*Be at peace with God and man
*Live clean and blameless in His sight
*Do not be carried away by error and lose your foothold
*Grow in grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ
(2 Peter 3:11-18, Phillips Translation)
I pray that Peter's counsel will uplift your heart and inspire you to live for Him with hope and perseverance. Perhaps you may want to print them out as a daily reminder of God’s desire for you. Perhaps you will share them and stir up someone else by reminding them (See 1 Peter 1:13).
May you always dwell securely in His grace and peace,
I have been involved in Disciplers since 1987, as a discussion leader, teacher, writer, and now as director. I am profoundly committed to the stewardship of this ministry which God has entrusted to me for a time. God’s word is the chief joy of my life. I cherish my personal time in the word, and I am filled with gratitude to be able to share His word with you, my fellow disciples in Christ.