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Seven Critical Challenges for Living in This World (A Study of I Peter 2): R-E-S-P-E-C-T!

Some of you are aware that I’ve been engaged in a daily Bible reading program with my friend Frank in New Jersey for a couple of years or so. We choose a book of the Bible and read the same chapter each day for a week — then move on to the next chapter after that. Our procedure is quite simple and is explained here.

Well, I’ve started a small group of four men who are doing this kind of daily Bible reading and we’ve worked our way through Philippians and I Timothy, and are now going through I Peter. We drop each other a short email on Sunday about something we’ve learned in our reading together.

In reading through I Peter 2, I believe there are seven critical challenges that Peter gives us that are particularly relevant for us right now in our world. Here’s the seventh —

This seventh critical challenge involves the believer’s behavior towards others. We are to show “proper respect” to everyone. Sometimes that’s quite difficult to do, isn’t it? Notice, however, that it is “proper” respect. We are not to favor others because of their status or wealth or power.

And Peter gets very specific in breaking down the category of those to whom we should show proper respect. We are to: (1) love the family of believers; (2) to fear God; and (3) to honor the emperor. Love, fear, honor. Those are high qualities for the follower of Jesus.

Today’s Challenge: We’ve covered some very important commands in our look at I Peter 2. As you think about these seven, which one stands out as the one you most need to work on?

 
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Posted by on April 8, 2021 in I Peter 2

 

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Seven Critical Challenges for Living in This World (A Study of I Peter 2): Free Slaves?

Some of you are aware that I’ve been engaged in a daily Bible reading program with my friend Frank in New Jersey for a couple of years or so. We choose a book of the Bible and read the same chapter each day for a week — then move on to the next chapter after that. Our procedure is quite simple and is explained here.

Well, I’ve started a small group of four men who are doing this kind of daily Bible reading and we’ve worked our way through Philippians and I Timothy, and are now going through I Peter. We drop each other a short email on Sunday about something we’ve learned in our reading together.

In reading through I Peter 2, I believe there are seven critical challenges that Peter gives us that are particularly relevant for us right now in our world. Here’s the sixth —

This one seems a bit contradictory, doesn’t it? We are to live “as free people” but “as God’s slaves”! Someone has said that man’s first duty is not to find freedom, but a Master. How true. We’re gonna serve somebody, as the great theologian Bob Dylan once said.

We can misuse our freedom in Christ to do and to cover-up EVIL! Really! The Christian world was shocked a while back to learn that a world-renown apologist for the Christian faith was using his freedom (and his organization’s finances) for his own sexual escapades. We underestimate our inclination to do evil to our peril.

Today’s Challenge: How might you and I show our freedom in Christ today? How might we demonstrate that we are most free when we are serving our Lord God? Any thoughts?

 
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Posted by on April 6, 2021 in I Peter 2

 

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Seven Critical Challenges for Living in This World (A Study of I Peter 2): Submitting to Government?

Some of you are aware that I’ve been engaged in a daily Bible reading program with my friend Frank in New Jersey for a couple of years or so. We choose a book of the Bible and read the same chapter each day for a week — then move on to the next chapter after that. Our procedure is quite simple and is explained here.

Well, I’ve started a small group of four men who are doing this kind of daily Bible reading and we’ve worked our way through Philippians and I Timothy, and are now going through I Peter. We drop each other a short email on Sunday about something we’ve learned in our reading together.

In reading through I Peter 2, I believe there are seven critical challenges that Peter gives us that are particularly relevant for us right now in our world. Here’s the fifth —

Submission is hard sometimes, isn’t it? Whether it’s to a spouse or to a duly-elected government (perhaps one for which we didn’t vote), putting ourselves under human authority can be challenging.

Note the reason we are to submit ourselves to human authority: it is for the Lord’s sake. How? Maybe the idea is that if we rebel against legitimate human authority, we are presenting Christianity as a religion of disobedience and strife, rather than as the honorable movement that it is.

Note the two aspects of human authority Peter mentions: the emperor (as the supreme authority) and governors. Note also why these authorities are sent by God: “to punish those who do wrong and to commend those who do right.” Punishment and commendation.

Today’s Challenge: How, specifically, can you submit to God-ordained human leadership? At the very least, you and I should be praying for those who are in authority over us. Are we doing that?

 
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Posted by on April 4, 2021 in I Peter 2

 

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