A People Proclaiming God’s Praises

| Mon, Nov 11, 2013 | Set 3 Week 46

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But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light. Once you were not a people, but now you are God’s people; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy. [Beloved, I urge you as sojourners and exiles to abstain from the passions of the flesh, which wage war against your soul.]—1 Peter 2:9–10 [11]

The way I want to approach our Fighter Verse this week is chronologically. So, behold God’s kindness as you proclaim his excellencies.

First, we were once “not a people.” We once “had not received mercy” (verse 10). As Isaiah 53:6 says, “All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned—every one—to his own way.” At one time, because of the hardness of our hearts, we were helpless, hopeless, and Godless.

Then, God mercifully called us. Once we were in darkness. Now, because of that call, we are in his light (verse 9). Furthermore, we weren’t just in darkness. We were darkness. We aren’t simply in light. We are light. Paul writes, “at one time you were darkness, but now you are light in the Lord” (Ephesians 5:8). When God brings us into the light, we become lights that shine so that others might see and praise God our Father (Matthew 5:16).

Now, because of that gracious calling, believers—as a group!—are “a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, [and] a people for [God’s] own possession” (verse 9). And I say this calling is “gracious” because Peter says that, through God’s calling, “now you have received mercy” (verse 10). Because of God’s kindness, we are chosen. Because of God’s kingship, we are royal. Because of God’s glory, we are holy. And because of God’s calling, we are his.

Thus, in our new identity, we seek him and his will, rather than “the passions of the flesh” (verse 11). Later in this epistle, Peter writes, “Since therefore Christ suffered in the flesh, arm yourselves with the same way of thinking, for whoever has suffered in the flesh has ceased from sin, so as to live for the rest of the time in the flesh no longer for human passions but for the will of God” (1 Peter 4:1–2).

Eternity is at stake. These sins “wage war against your soul” (verse 11). So, embrace your identity. You are sojourners and exiles who are “chosen,” “royal,” “holy,” and “[God’s] possession” (verse 9). Live in God’s light as his own.

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