Monday, August 09, 2010

Meditation on 1 Peter 5.10-11 [Part 2]

‘… The God of all grace,
who has called you to his eternal glory in Christ,
will himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you.
To him be the dominion forever and ever. Amen.’
1 Peter 5.10-11 ESV

Today let us look at the phrase: ‘who has called you to his eternal glory in Christ…’
In the circumstances of our lives, even in the hard providences, we may rest assured that God has put these in place for his sovereign purposes. This is a truth that we need to build into our lives regularly, especially when situations are gentle. One of the foundational truths to the Christian life is that God has called us into it, and that this calling is aimed at the glory of Christ. 
Paul expressed it this way in Romans 8.28-30:
And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose. For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. And those whom he predestined he also called, and those whom he called he also justified, and those whom he justified he also glorified. [ESV]
Notice the progression here. God has a purpose in his work in believers’ lives. That purpose is to conform them to the image of his Son, and then ultimately, to glorify them just as the Son has been glorified. That provides great assurance for each of us as we consider the ultimate end of God’s purposes for us. This also gives us great confidence in God’s goodness in our current circumstances. One of the questions that we ought to be asking is, ‘how is this situation being used by God to make me more like his Son?’
While Peter does not list the individual links to this chain the way Paul does, his outlook is very similar. Remember that this letter is an encouragement to those that are facing persecution. Peter is reminding them that even the persecution that they are facing is part of the process by which God is calling them to eternal glory.
As we encounter the messiness and the troubles of life, be assured that these things are not just happenstance; they are not just chance operating in this life. No, the good, the difficult, even the devastating events of life are all from the hand of God and are part of his calling us to the glory of his dear Son. Remember that he doesn’t give us trials beyond what we can handle without also providing the way to deal with them. We may trust his purposes, and cling to his love.
Lay hold on these truths, believe these truths, rest on these truths. They provide the ultimate in security and comfort.

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