THURSDAY, DECEMBER 14
SCRIPTURE: 1 PETER 4
By: Jacob Steward
Throughout chapter 4, and really the rest of 1 Peter, Peter is explaining how to trust the Lord no matter what is going on. Stay heaven focused.
Peter begins by talking about suffering. But not just that we are going to suffer but explaining how we have an example of suffering in Jesus. We must have the mind of Christ to fight against the temptation of sin. God’s will can be a reality with the attitude of Christ.
As Peter continues he goes into how the attitude, or mind of Christ, interacts with those around us. Those who do not follow Christ, do not understand Christian’s response to suffering. Basic human nature, which is sinful, does not respond to suffering well.
Verse 7 switches from what you shouldn’t do, to active ways of following Jesus. First, stay connected with God. Next, love people. It really is simple, just not always easy. There are no conditions and no excuses. Use everything that you have to glorify God. The end being near does not allow us to relax until it comes, but we must work until the Kingdom of God comes.
To finish the Chapter, Peter goes even farther than he did at the beginning. Have the mind of Christ when suffering hits, but also rejoice in the suffering! Suffering is going to happen and we will have opportunities to respond like the world or we can rejoice. We know that suffering is a sign of the Spirit of God resting on us. Do not be ashamed of your suffering, have joy, give God the glory.
All of this ends with Peter asking a question that he doesn’t answer directly. “What will become of the ungodly and the sinner?” (v. 18) Peter concludes by indirectly answering the question. Those who suffer for the will of God entrust their souls to Him. There is no one else I would want to trust my soul to.
This entire passage talks about suffering and being full of joy. Two seemingly contradictory things working together completely. That is only possible when our focus is not on the things of the world, but on the Kingdom of God. We need to focus everything we have eternal things, and work hard until Jesus comes back.