1 Peter: The Holiness of Obedient Children

Brethren, look back at all you have learned from God’s Word in the time since your baptism.  Take inventory of all the ways God has taught you to be a better, wiser, more profitable, more giving and selfless human being.  List all the blessings that have come into your life because of your walk with God.  Do you want to go back to how you were before you knew what you know now?  Which life is better, the life you had without Christ or the life with Him which you now have? … Read More 1 Peter: The Holiness of Obedient Children

1 Peter: We Have What Old Testament Prophets and Angels Longed To Have

This “good news” – “the salvation of your souls” (1:9b-10a) – was the fulfillment of these Old Testament prophecies that the prophets had diligently “searched and inquired” about (1:11).  It had not been completely revealed to them during Old Testament times.  Even “angels long to look” into these matters (1:12c), the Greek rendering of this phrase indicating that the angels so passionately desired to know more about these matters that they would in a figurative sense bend or crouch down to see it.  Yet God’s plan to save mankind was now completely revealed to Peter’s readers, and us today, within the New Testament (cf. Rom. 16:25-26; Eph. 3:3-5).  We today can now see and know that of which they could only glimpse and ask.  What a blessing that is!… Read More 1 Peter: We Have What Old Testament Prophets and Angels Longed To Have

1 Peter: Reasons to Rejoice…And Reasons for Trials

“Wait, Peter!” these first readers of his epistle might have been thinking to themselves at this point.  “Aren’t you aware of all the persecutions and hardships we are facing because of our Christianity?”  The apostle acknowledged this.  “…though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been grieved by various trials…” (1:6b).  He will elaborate further on what those trials were later in this book, as well as how Christians should respond to them.  For now, notice that he still expects them to rejoice because of all the great blessings with positive eternal ramifications which the Father had and continued to shower upon them…in spite of the trials they were currently experiencing.  The Lord expected the same from His apostles, and He expects the same from us today (John 15:11, 18-25; Phil. 4:4-7).  Are our daily lives filled with joy in spite of whatever hardships life throws at us for these reasons…or are we too focused on the bad to see the eternal good?… Read More 1 Peter: Reasons to Rejoice…And Reasons for Trials

Zechariah: Holy to the Lord

The “Feast of Booths,” booths being tabernacles or tents, was observed under the old covenant as a time of joy and gratitude as Israelites celebrated how their time in the wilderness had ended and God had allowed them to dwell in the Promised Land (Lev. 23:34-43).  This is likely a figurative way of prophesying how those who had been lost and enemies of the church but now are followers of Jesus have similar reason to rejoice.  God’s grace had brought them out of the wilderness of sin and now they are in the “Promised Land,” citizens of his Son’s kingdom with eternal life as their destiny.… Read More Zechariah: Holy to the Lord

Zechariah: “The Lord Will Be King Over All The Earth”

Outside of the church within the world, sin reigns and thus brings forth all kinds of destruction, including the ultimate destruction of hell.  However, the Lord and King of all protects those who are within the walls of the spiritual Jerusalem which is the church of Christ (Matt. 6:25-34; 1 Cor. 10:13; Phil. 4:6-7; Heb. 13:5-6; 2 Pet. 2:9; cf. Is. 2:2-4; Mic. 4:1-4).… Read More Zechariah: “The Lord Will Be King Over All The Earth”