Happy Wednesday! Yesterday, we covered 1 Peter 3:13-14. Join me as we continue our review in 1 Peter chapter 3 verses 13-17. Today, I will cover verse 15, but will provide the full caption of the verses until we complete our review through verse 17.
“13 Now, who will want to harm you if you are eager to do good? 14 But even if you suffer for doing what is right, God will reward you for it. So don’t worry or be afraid of their threats.15 Instead, you must worship Christ as Lord of your life. And if someone asks about your hope as a believer, always be ready to explain it. 16 But do this in a gentle and respectful way.[c] Keep your conscience clear. Then if people speak against you, they will be ashamed when they see what a good life you live because you belong to Christ.17 Remember, it is better to suffer for doing good, if that is what God wants, than to suffer for doing wrong!” – 1 Peter 3:13-17 NLT
We know, fear is crippling, but God is greater than our fears. So we are reminded not to fear. Verse reads “15 Instead, you must worship Christ as Lord of your life. And if someone asks about your hope as a believer, always be ready to explain it.” Instead of living in fear, we are being directed to set our hearts apart from the things that have created fear in our hearts, there is no room for those things, as many will say, “ain’t nobody got time for that.” Sisters and brothers, it is time to live wholeheartedly what we believe.
How do we do that you might ask? Well that lies in the condition of our hearts today. Is it broken by the things people have said to you or about the things people have said about you? Is your heart overwhelmed by the fact that there are people in your life who have discredited you as a person or discredited you as a believer? Whatever the condition of your heart is today, know that the Lord is making it all brand new.
The Lord wants to come into our hearts and he wants to remain there, so the author reminds us, lets look in the NRSV – 15 but in your hearts sanctify Christ as Lord. Always be ready to make your defense to anyone who demands from you an accounting for the hope that is in you;”, to sanctify Christ as Lord in our hearts – he is our only hope. And even when we suffer, we should always be ready to make a defense to anyone who demands from us to explain it or account for the hope that is in us.
The first step is to set our hearts to be focused on Christ or set apart for Christ. Keep Him in the center of our hearts so that we recognize the hope that is in us.
You may be asking, what is the hope we have in Christ. The Baker Illustrated Bible Dictionary defines hope as:
“At time simply indicating a wish, in the Bible the word “hope” most often designates a disposition of soul, the grounds for one’s hope, or the outcome for which one hopes. Those whom God has helped and delivered expect to see God’s power again when future needs arise, knowing that in God there are reasons for hope. Mere optimism assumes that bad circumstances will improve with the passing of time. In contrast, hope assumes that God is faithful and is convinced that he is able to bring about his good purpose (refer to Isaiah 44:6-8).
Sisters and brothers, if our hope is in Christ Jesus as our Lord and Savior, then our behavior should be fitting to the one who is in Christ Jesus:
- The One who forgives.
- The One who restores.
- The One who suffered and died for us.
- The One who said, ‘all authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me’.
- The One who in spite of what we have done in our past offers complete wholeness.
Tomorrow, I will continue with this verse and press through verse 16 if time permits. But in the meantime, ponder on how you will worship Christ as Lord of your life.
Father God, thank you for another morning that is filled with your grace and mercy. Thank you for the forgiveness of sins and the joy that gives us complete hope in you. Lord, heal our brokenness and make us new in you. Lord, create in us a heart that is purely devoted to you and what you desire of us. Lord, break us of old habits that do not bring you glory. Sustain our minds and fill us with your Holy Spirit, so that we may be living examples of you. Lord, equip our tongue, shape our hearts and strengthen our minds to clearly articulate to others what we believe and who our hope is in. Lord, may our life be a reflection of what our mouths confess. In Jesus name, amen.
Keep praying! Keep trusting! Keep pursuing the Lord!
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