Our next reading is 1 Peter 1:13-16
v13: Therefore: Peter is about to make a summary statement in light of everything that he has said in the previous verses (in light of our redemption, the work of sanctification in our lives, becoming obedient children of G-d etc). Everything that Peter has spoken about thus far should cause us to want to get to work, to serve G-d in the way that He desires to be served. The time is short (1 Cor 7:29-31). We are rapidly transitioning from what was to that which will be.
- Gird up: John 13:3-8. On the night of Yeshua’s betrayal, when His time was running out, He girded Himself with a towel and washed His disciples’ feet. Yeshua left us with an example to follow – we are called to do for others what He has done for us. Our time is running out.
- Loins: The loins are found in our middle section. They make up our foundation.
- Gird up the loins of your mind: We need to prepare for action. We need to think differently. If we are not thinking according to the truth of G-d, then we are not going to be ready to serve. If we are not serving, then we are not heading in a Kingdom direction (Matt 23:11).
- Be sober/sound minded: We need to think in a right way.
- The grace that is to be brought to you: We are saved by grace (Eph 2:8-10). This does not mean, however, that grace ceases once we are saved. Grace is still very active in a believer’s life. Here, Peter is telling us that grace perseveres with us. Grace brings about a change in our lives (Titus 2:11-14) and leads us to a glorious conclusion or Kingdom end.
- The revelation of Messiah Yeshua: This is the second time that Peter is writing about the return of Yeshua (see 1 Peter 1:7). Repetition is a grammatical indicator that tells us that something is being emphasised – in this case, the return of Yeshua.
v14: Obedient children: Without faith it is impossible to please G-d (Heb 11:6). True faith (faith that pleases G-d) manifests itself in the believer’s life through obedience
- Former things: The desires we had before we believed in Yeshua.
- Ignorance – Against the knowledge of G-d (ἀγνοίᾳ): Many Bibles translate this word as ‘ignorance’, but it is a word that means against knowing something. Those who are not walking in obedience are not doing it out of ignorance or unknowing. They are doing it because they are against the knowledge of G-d. They are in bondage to their previous mindset. Many people today profess that they believe in Yeshua, but their hope is not based on a Kingdom hope but on receiving their own wants and desires in this world. This is not a Biblical faith. We have not been called to pursue our own desires (‘former lusts/things’) but need to set our minds on ‘heavenly things’ (Col 3:2). This is how we are called to think.
v15: Holy: Biblically, a person is considered holy when they are committed to the purposes of G-d.
- Be holy: This is a commandment. ‘Become’ or be holy is written in the passive. This means that it is not something that we do, but rather it is something that we receive. This work that changes us is brought about by surrendering to G-d and desiring to serve Him, being committed to His plans and purposes etc
- Conduct: Behaviour. Our deeds are important to G-d.
v16: It is written: So oftenin the New Testament when revelation is given it is backed up by the Hebrew Bible or Old Testament (a message from the prophets, or from Moses etc).
- Be holy, for I am holy: Leviticus 11:44. This expression speaks of a covenant because it shows a mutual agreement. G-d is revealing Himself to be holy and if we are in a covenantal relationship with Him then what He is we want to be – like Him. We have been created in His image. So, because He is holy, we are called to be holy too.