We tend to think of judgment and grace as antithetical. We anticipate grace while we dread judgment. That is a perspective born of guilt and shame. Feeling inadequate for living and disqualified from fellowship with God, we conclude that we are the ones being judged and the sentence will be harsh to us....Keep Reading
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Everyone wants to be blessed. The problem is that we often view blessings as our gain at other’s loss. We are blessed if we win the lottery. Of course, that means that everyone else did not, and we got their money. We even tend to think that for God to bless us, others must not be blessed. And even further, we begin to feel that we are only blessed when we have more good things happening to us than are happening to others....
In marriage, the role of the husband is different from that of the wife, but the perspective and attitude are the same. Peter’s use of “likewise” or “in the same way” is common to both his instructions to the wife and to the husband and is probably referring to 2:13 where believers are exhorted to place their explicit trust in God by properly submitting to his delegated authority structures....
Since the new order has been launched in the resurrection of Jesus, every aspect of life is affected, including marriage. As all married people know, marriage can turn out to be not only different than expected, but difficult to navigate. For marriage to be anything like what God intended in the beginning, we need a new perspective. Peter is describing that new perspective in this whole section of his letter. He has already said that we have been freed and empowered to submit to God’s order by honestly respecting the delegated authority structures that allow society to function best. But just exactly how does the resurrection of Jesus affect the wife’s role in marriage?...
Because sin had invaded the hearts of Adam and Eve and had spread to their offspring, humanity began to move toward chaos. Evil in various forms began to manifest at all levels of society. When it appeared that evil would win and push out all vestiges of goodness, God acted to save society....Keep Reading
The nature of this magnificent salvation that former prophets inquired about and angels long to see is one of ever approaching grace. It is the continual progressive revelation of Christ and his rule now and forever. The prophet Daniel had dreams about the various kingdoms in history, culminating with the establishment of God's kingdom through his people on earth. The ston...Keep Reading
We don't pay much attention to salutations now. It is just a formality that we glance at as we move quickly into the content of the correspondence. Biblical writers viewed it with much more appreciation. In this case, Peter is speaking over his readers the blessing given in the gospel he is advocating....Keep Reading
It is possible that the eighth chapter of Proverbs is the apex of wisdom literature. Wisdom is personified as one who has the keys to meaningful life and is eager to give them to those who recognize the value of wisdom. It points to a time in Solomon's future when ultimate wisdom is fully demonstrated in the person of Jesus the Christ. In this chapter, wisdom rehearses the...Keep Reading
The letter to the Colossians begins with the prayer for grace to be extended and ends with the same. Sadly, many Christians believe that we get into the family of God by grace, but once there we must grow and mature by our own methods. It is enough, they argue, that God would forgive our past sins and let us in. We can't expect him to spoil us by continuing to treat us wit...Keep Reading