Wednesday, January 21, 2009

1 Peter 1:3-5 "His Amazing Grace in a Sentence"

1 Peter 1:3-5.

"Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade - kept in heaven for you, who through faith are shielded by God's power until the coming of the salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last time." NIV
I don't think there are many sentences in the Bible that stretch out over three verses. And I don't think there are many sentences in the Bible packed with as much richness to ponder as this one. I could spend all day meditating on this one sentence and not fully grasp the power and graciousness packed into these words.

First, look at "His mercy." We were dead in our sins. Hopelessly bound for eternal punishment for the selfish and destructive choices we had allowed to infiltrate our lives. Then He not only graciously gives us a new birth, raised up out of our dead state, but also toward a living hope. Because of Jesus Christ's power to overcome sin and death, we are freed from present bondage, and given hope for a bright future.

Then on top of that, we have an inheritance. And not just any inheritance. We have the hope of heaven - a place kept especially for me. And no one can take this inheritance away from me. There's no probate or inheritance tax. I have a mansion and streets paved with gold illuminated by the glory of God waiting for me. Now we are really into something our minds cannot even wrap around.

And as if that is not enough, until Christ comes again, we are, by faith, "shielded by God's power." Can we even begin to understand the meaning of that in its fullness? God is our protector, provider, advocate, guide and guard. If we surrender to His covering, there is nothing and no one that can get to us. The enemy has no power over me that I do not give him because I have the Almighty Creator of the Universe as my Jehovah-Jireh and Jehovah-Nissi. My heart is full of praise.

Further Thoughts:
  1. List ways in your life you experience God's mercy, inheritance, and shield. Support with Scripture.
  2. Read through the passage a couple more times and meditate on the amazing gift our Lord has given us. What should be our response?

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