A Verse for Meditation

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! By his great mercy he has given us a new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.  1 Peter 1:3 ESV

How new is the new Christian? Think about a newborn baby – eager to see everything, completely confident that Mother will take care of him, fearless, hungrily learning from every experience. How does that compare to your memory of being a new Christian?

What made the Christian’s new birth possible?

Read what follows:

to an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you, who by God’s power are being guarded through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. In this you rejoice, though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been grieved by various trials, so that the tested genuineness of your faith—more precious than gold that perishes though it is tested by fire—may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ. Though you have not seen him, you love him. Though you do not now see him, you believe in him and rejoice with joy that is inexpressible and filled with glory, obtaining the outcome of your faith, the salvation of your souls. 1 Peter 1:4-9 ESV

A new Christian is already experiencing the cleansing and forgiveness of Christ’s salvation. What does Peter mean, then, when he says that salvation will be revealed later?

Peter says that the faith of a new Christian is more precious than gold. In what other way does he compare this faith to gold?

The joy of knowing Christ, according to Peter, transcends the constraints of time. What are the characteristics of this joy?

Peter names three paradoxes that characterize Christian existence in this passage. What are they? See if you can figure them out before you read the footnote. [1]


 

[1] The three paradoxes are: 1) joy in the face of suffering, 2) confidence in delivery despite persecution, and 3) reliance in Christ despite the fact that he cannot be seen.

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