1 Peter 1:3, 4 – 3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, 4 To an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fades not away, reserved in heaven for you
Thanks to the Lord’s mercy, we are heirs to eternity’s greatest inheritance. This inheritance cannot fade, be corrupted, or be defiled, and no power on earth can ever take it away. It is this inheritance Jesus went to prepare and reserve for us. It is this inheritance that should be sought above all else, and it is this inheritance that endures forever.
Do not let such a wonderful gift pass away. Instead, seek it first, last, and everything in between. Claim God’s eternal, undefiled inheritance reserved in heaven for you.
Further Reading – John 14:1-3, Titus 3:3-7
1 Peter 2:21 – For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps:
According to an old saying, you must walk a mile in a person’s shoes before you can truly understand them. The saying may be old, but the concept is sound. In order to truly know someone, you must know their experiences, trials, perspective, and personality. You must do, think, and see as they do.
The same principle applies to our spiritual lives. Many wish to know and understand the nature of Christ. They search high and low, hoping to finally understand His character, and despite learning about Him, they never fully know Him. The only way we can know Christ, is to do the things that He did, walk in His footsteps, and mirror His example.
If we follow the pattern of Christ, walk a mile in His proverbial shoes, we will know Christ. Not only will we know Christ and His character, but we will become like Him, righteous and holy. Wait no longer. Copy Him. Walk in His way and in His example. He beckons you to follow.
Further Reading – 1 John 2:6 – He that saith he abideth in Him ought himself also so to walk, even as He walked.
John 13:15 – For I have given you an example, that ye should do as I have done to you.
1 John 3:1 – Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God…
This verse is a testament to God’s love for us. Because of His love, we are able to enjoy the lofty position of a child of God. His love is so great, He was willing to give His only begotten Son to grant us salvation and eternal life. No other love can match the length and breadth of God’s love for His children.
God’s love extends to you. Before you were even known on earth, Christ loved you and died for you. He has promised to always be with you, leading and guiding you. He cares for your every need and feels your hurts and tears. If ever you are tempted to believe you are alone and unloved, remember the Lord’s everlasting love for you.
Further Reading – Romans 8:38-39 – 38 For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, 39 Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
1 John 4:7-8 – 7 Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loves is born of God, and knows God. 8 He that loves not knows not God; for God is love.
Hatred and malice have no place in our hearts, for we are commanded to love. There are no exceptions to this rule; we are to love all as Jesus loved all. There should not be any conditions on our love either. Our love should be free to all regardless of the circumstances. This abundant, freely-given, Christ-like love is the true mark of a born-again child of God.
No matter past history or present temperament, love the people around you. Put away any animosity or treasured grudges out of your heart and ask the Lord to replace it with His love. And, knowing His love and knowing Him, you will not be able to keep from sharing His love with those around you.
Further Reading – 1 John 3:11 – For this is the message that ye heard from the beginning, that we should love one another.
John 16:13 – Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth…
GPS has been one of the greatest advancements in personal transportation. You simply input your destination’s address into the device, and detailed step-by-step instructions lead you there. It’s almost impossible to get lost. Some devices even aid you in other ways, providing detours, traffic advice, and speed limit information. These tools make driving, especially for long distances, much easier.
The Holy Spirit is kind of like our spiritual GPS. It leads us and guides, showing us right from wrong. He gives us support during temptation and helps us discern between good and evil. In Him, we have step-by-step, detailed instructions telling us exactly how to walk in His light. Why, then, do we choose to disregard His wisdom in favor of our own? There is no logical reason. When we disregard the Holy Spirit’s guiding in favor of our own wisdom, we are sure to lose our way.
Brothers and sisters, let’s take advantage of this wonderful gift given to us. We don’t need to struggle to find the right path in our strength when we have the guiding truth of the Spirit of God. Heed His instruction instead and you’ll never go astray.
Further Reading – John 14:26 – But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things…
1 Corinthians 3:16-17 – 16 Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwells in you? 17 If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are.
It is up to us to maintain a holy, healthy dwelling for the Holy Spirit. But, we cannot do it in our own strength. Our flesh is weak, we are deeply rooted in sin, and we are reluctant to change. However, our unchanged bodies are no place for the Spirit of God. How can we, who are comfortable in our sin, somehow become a fit body temple?
Before our bodies can be changed, our minds must be changed into the likeness of Christ. We must surrender our will to the Lord and allow Him to put His character in us. This new mind does not desire the things that defiled us before. Instead, it longs to walk closer with the Master. Once our minds have been changed to desire a holy, healthy body-temple, it becomes a matter of obedience. The Spirit of God has already promised to lead us into the right way, it is up to us to trust Him and obey.
Do not become discouraged by a less than ideal body-temple. Your current state does not have to be permanent; change is possible. Now is the time to decide whether to change or to stay the same. The Lord longs to make us all into holy temples of God. All we have to do is surrender.
Further Reading – Romans 12:1 – I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.
1 Corinthians 10:21 – Ye cannot drink the cup of the Lord, and the cup of devils: ye cannot be partakers of the Lord’s table, and of the table of devils.
It is not possible to be part of the Lord’s number and a partaker with the devil at the same time. The Lord commands His people to serve Him with all of their hearts and minds. Partial devotion simply will not do. It impossible to do this when a part of us insists on drinking of the devil’s cup. The devil does not want our split attentions either. Each side demands our full affections; we must choose one or the other.
We can no longer dabble in both sides. We cannot serve two masters; we cannot drink of two cups. Instead, we must choose. Who will you choose?
Further Reading – Luke 16:13 – No servant can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.
Psalm 121:1, 2 – I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help. My help cometh from the Lord, which made heaven and earth.
God is still our help. Many things may have changed between the writing of this verse and now, but God is still the same. He continues to come to the aid of His children, bearing their burdens and comforting their hearts. He does not turn a blind eye to their sufferings and their prayers, but cares for them as a Shepherd would His sheep.
We needlessly suffer through trials, temptations, and heartaches alone, refusing to lean on the strength of the Lord. He is always willing and always available to tend to the needs of His children. Rely on Him for your help, and He will not fail you.
Further Reading – Hebrews 13:5 – … for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.
Psalm 46:1 – God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.
Exodus 20:2 – I am the Lord thy God, which have brought thee out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage.
Though this passage was addressed to the Israelites, it applies to God’s people today. Our Lord may not have rescued us from literal slavery, but He has redeemed us from something equally as enslaving: sin. At one point or another, sin was our house of bondage. No matter how hard we tried to be free, that sin still had a hold on us; we were under its bondage.
But Christ saw fit to redeem all who are under the bondage of sin. He died on the cross so we may be slaves no longer. Those of us who are free know how great of a blessing this is. The chains that enslaved us were broken and replaced with the light and easy yoke of the Lord.
If you are still struggling with a sin, know that you do not need to struggle alone any longer. The Lord promised to bring His people out of the house of bondage, and, should you ask deliverance of Him, He will not deny you. And if the Son shall make you free, you shall be free indeed (John 8:36).
Psalm 130:7-8 – 7 Let Israel hope in the Lord: for with the Lord there is mercy, and with him is plenteous redemption. 8 And he shall redeem Israel from all his iniquities.
God is often portrayed as a vengeful, vindictive figure waiting to strike down anyone who defies Him. This caricature of the Lord could not be any further from the truth.
Throughout the Bible, God’s people have relied on a caring and merciful God. He is a Father and a Shepherd, tenderly nurturing those under His protection. No matter the sin of His people, He is always ready to forgive them and redeem them from their bondage. Many times His people squandered His mercy, returning to their sin shortly after forgiveness. Despite that, the Lord was always ready to forgive them again.
If you are caught in sin, do not doubt the Lord’s mercy towards you. Instead, hope. Hope in His mercy and in His plenteous redemption. And He will redeem you from all your iniquities.
Further Reading – Isiah 55:7 – 7 Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the Lord, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon.
*If possible, read all of Isiah 55. The entire chapter speaks of God’s mercies.