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About-Him.Com Devotional 02-06-2010
1Peter 3:8-12 (NKJV) - Called to Blessing
1Peter 3:8 Finally, all of you be of one mind, having compassion for one another; love as brothers, be tenderhearted, be courteous; 9 not returning evil for evil or reviling for reviling, but on the contrary blessing, knowing that you were called to this, that you may inherit a blessing.
1Peter 3:8a Finally, all of you be of one mind,
Be of one mind? At Pentecost, the disciples were of one mind and one accord. They had seen the risen Christ ascend with a promise to return. That was the only thing that mattered to them, and as they waited on the Lord, the Holy Ghost descended upon them (Acts 2:1-4). Later, when threatened, they prayed with one accord, their building was shaken and once again they were filled to overflowing with the Holy Ghost (Acts 4:31). Philippians 2:5 urges us to be of the same mind as Jesus, who while in human form just like us, became obedient to the death of the cross. Because of His submission and obedience, He was exalted to the throne of heaven and given the name that is above all names. If and when we learn to keep the main thing (the death, resurrection and ascension of Jesus), the main thing, we might be greatly surprised what God will accomplish in our lives and churches.
1Peter 3:8b having compassion for one another;
Sometimes we get so absorbed with our own problems that we fail to realize that the world around us and the kingdom of God consists of much more than ourselves, our family, our church, our country, our this and our that, etc. etc.
When it comes to compassion, what better example than Jesus? First of all, he had compassion on each and every one of us, as messed up as we were, and often still are. In scripture we see that He met people in all conditions of life and He loved them just as they were. He had compassion on two blind men who were making quite a racket as Jesus came by. The crowd wanted them to be quite, but Jesus left the crowd and had compassion on them and healed their blindness (Mt 20:30-34). Do we ever judge somebody else who violates our sense of order in our assemblies? I personally don’t like to listen to people’s physical complaints, I have some of my own. However, Jesus is listening and he never turns a deaf ear.
Jesus went about preaching the gospel of the kingdom and healing folks with all manner of disease and feeding them when they when they were hungry. He was moved to compassion as He noted that they wandered about as sheep having no shepherd (Mt. 9:36, 14-14). Do any of us identify with that? He had compassion on the widow of Nain in her bereavement and raised her son back to life (Lu. 7:13). In the parable of The Good Samaritan, we see a picture of Jesus showing mercy and compassion to a total stranger who was of a different race and religion, who had no means with which to repay His kindness (Lu. 10:33). What does that tell us?
1Peter 3:8c love as brothers, be tenderhearted, be courteous;
Once again, Jesus is our example and pattern.
John 15:13 Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.
Romans 5:6 ¶ For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly.
Romans 5:8 But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.
Ephesians 5:2 And walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath given himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweetsmelling savour.
Jesus was tenderhearted and merciful to all that He met. Hebrews tells us that it pleased Him to be made just like us, that He might be our merciful and faithful High Priest. Because he was tempted, He is able to give comfort to us when we are tempted (Heb. 2:17).
Heb 2:17 Wherefore in all things it behoved him to be made like unto [his] brethren, that he might be a merciful and faithful high priest in things [pertaining] to God, to make reconciliation for the sins of the people.
1Peter 3:9 not returning evil for evil or reviling for reviling,
Once again, Jesus is our example. He was oppressed and afflicted, and He said nothing as He was led as a lamb to the slaughter (Isa. 53:7). When false accusations were brought against Him in the judgment hall, He didn’t reply (Mt. 26:63, 27:17).
but on the contrary blessing, knowing that you were called to this, that you may inherit a blessing.
Our natural man is incapable of returning blessings for cursing, however we left the old man at Calvary and became new creatures in Christ. Things are different now, the old habits and thought processes are gone, nailed to the cross. All things are new. We don’t talk, think or react as we once did (2Cor. 5:17). We have the mind of Christ (1Cor. 2:16), but we often have to be reminded to use it, don’t we? Jesus endured the cross because of the joy that was set before Him. We are called to endure a few things and return blessings in bad situations, as we keep in mind that we are called to eternal blessings in heaven with Jesus.
In verses 10 -12, the apostle Peter gives us a direct quote of Psalms 34:12-16
1Peter 3:10 He who would love life And see good days, Let him refrain his tongue from evil, And his lips from speaking deceit.
We all know that when we become angry, our bodies have a chemical reaction that affects our health. Hormones are released that stimulate us to fight of flight. If we continue to harbor bad thoughts and unforgiveness in our hearts, our health is adversely affected which can result in an untimely death. The apostle Paul said that because many failed to discern the Lord’s broken body, many were weak and sickly and others had passed on in death (1Cor. 11:30).
1Peter 3:11 Let him turn away from evil and do good; Let him seek peace and pursue it.
We are to run from and shun evil in all of it’s forms. We are to seek peace and pursue it. Jesus said that if we lay our gift on the altar and then remember that our brother has something against us, we are to leave our gift there and go out to find our brother and be reconciled (Mt. 5:24). Then we can return and offer our gift. In other words, if while offering service to the Lord, whether in church or in any situation of life, when the Spirit prompts us to correct a situation, stop and correct it. It’s up to us. The burden is on us, not on our brother.
1Peter 3:12 For the eyes of the LORD are on the righteous, And His ears are open to their prayers; But the face of the LORD is against those who do evil.
If our prayers are hindered, it’s time for a checkup and a tune up.
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