Originally Posted by Chip - November 2009
I love the NIV translation of 1 Peter 1:13-16:
Therefore, prepare your minds for action; be self-controlled; set your hope fully on the grace to be given you when Jesus Christ is revealed. As obedient children, do not conform to the evil desires you had when you lived in ignorance. But just as he who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do; for it is written: “Be holy, because I am holy.”
God longs to be close to us. All through the Bible we see God saying how he wants a people that he can call His. A people He can live with. But God is holy. So very holy. The closer we want to get to God, the holier we have to be. Every step consists of laying our self and all our worldly ways down – in essence, dying to the world, dying to self, dying to sin . . . that we may discover life in God. I know, it seems so crazy that to live, we must lay down what we consider our ‘rights’ – our right to hold a grudge, our right to hold onto the hurt that person inflicted against you, our right to follow after the pleasures of this world, our right to do things our way. These are some of the things that must die in our life. . . please understand, I am not talking about physical death. . . but a sacrifice of our way of living that we might gain a way of life that is so far beyond what we can even imagine. I don’t know about you, but I long to be close to God.
“And I heard a great voice our of heaven saying, ‘Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God.” – Revelation 21:3
What totally blows me away is how directly opposite God’s ways are from those of this world. He wants us to forgive and even seek out the person who wronged us. To love our enemies. I may not have any enemies, per se, but I know people who are hard to love. He calls us to do things that are mind boggling. It’s like his idea of life is completely upside down and opposite of ours. . . or should I say that ours is really the way that is upside down.
“For the foolishness of God is wiser than man’s wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than man’s strength.” – 1 Corinthians 1:25 NIV
I love that verse. It makes me smile. It makes me laugh. It makes me want to know how wise God’s foolishness is. . . and truthfully, sometimes the things God wants us to do, the things that God’s people did in the past, the things that God himself has done, looks like foolishness to us. I have to laugh when I think of God looking down at ‘our wisdom’ and thinking it’s foolishness.
I believe that the rubber meets the road when we decide that we simply must care more about what God thinks than what our friends think and act accordingly. To know what God thinks, we must actively pursue God.
But just as he who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do; for it is written: “Be holy, because I am holy.” — 1 Peter 1:15-16 NIV
But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation; Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy. – 1 Peter 1:15-16 KJV
This is not an easy call, but it is also not one we are called to fulfill on our own strength. I thank the Lord that He is my hope, my strength, and my life. . . fo I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.