Standing Before Others
I Peter 2:11-3:7
Note: Because of the length of this post, I have decided to break it into small sections. I will post the second part tonight at 8 pm central, the third part Sunday morning with a final section on Sunday evening. This way it will not interfere with the already scheduled posts on Obadiah.
Peter, in our last post talks about how we are all living stones, which when built upon the cornerstone, which is Christ, we all become part of the church of God. The Christian church is not made up of buildings, but of people from all over the world that form or make up God’s church. Each of Christ faithful followers, properly fitted together form the Christian church.
Now, Peter askes the question: “How does the Christian stand before others?” Often, we talk about standing before God and giving an account of ourselves before our God and creator. The Bible is full of these references, but the Bible also talks about how we stand before others. What do people see when we stand before them.
The reality is, Christianity is a very practical religion and it tackles some pretty thorny issues. Peter, had suggestions for the early church on how the Christian should relate to an oppressive and corrupt society. He gave advice on how to cope with employers that treat their employees in unchristian like manners. He even gave advice on how we are to treat each other and how married couples should treat one another.
Apparently, the early Christian church has many of the same problems facing them as we have today. They faced and wonders as a Christian in an ungodly world how they were to act and respond to the things around them. Previously Peter has emphasized the status or position that the Christian has as the people of God, chosen by Him and drawn into privileged fellowship. He called them a priestly people, a holy nation, the recipients of God’s grace and favor.
Children of God are often called the children of light, and as Christians they are free. Their freedom binds them to their high calling. Christians are free in bondage to God. The true Christians knows what it means to fear God in his presence, and because of this they are free to love their follow man. The darkness, blindness of sinful selfishness is gone; they are free to love. They are also free to honor unbelievers knowing they the unbelievers are also God’s creatures, and so their role as Christians, they are free to honor, love and respect the unbeliever as well.
Therefore, in I Peter chapter two verse eleven, the apostle says: “I beg you as sojourners and pilgrims.” For each of us our time on earth is small when compared to entire time of earths history. Christ desires to bring his earth children home and so the apostle begs the Christians “to abstain from fleshly lusts which war against the soul, having your conduct honorable among the Gentiles, that when they speak against you as evildoers, they may, by your good works which they observe, glorify God in the day of visitation.”
For you and me, the natural question to ask is, “How are we to conduct ourselves?”
Peter then tells us what God is expecting from us as living stones in the Christians church. Living stones that live, work and play in an ungodly world. What are our responsibilities as Christians in the world in which we live in?
The next post on this will be at 8:00 pm Central Time.