We kick off this week with 1 Peter 1:22-25
v22: You have purified: A person can only be in one of two conditions: defiled or pure. G-d will not bless those who are defiled. Only someone in a state of purity can be blessed (Matt 5:8). Purity positions us in a place whereby we can identify truth and be obedient to it.
- Souls: This is a word that speaksabout the very being or essence of a person.
- Sincere love of the brethren: Loving others is an outcome of a clean heart.
- Love one another fervently: When we love G-d withall of our hearts, souls, minds and strength it is manifested through loving our neighbours as ourselves (Mark 12:29-31). Loving G-d and loving others is the foundation of the Torah (First five books of the Old Testament).
v23: Born again: Born, not through a human birth. We cannot do this in the flesh or through our own human ability.
- (literally)By means of the living word of G-d: When we emphasize Scripture and apply G-d’s Word to our lives everything changes (Heb 4:11-13)
- Living word [λόγου (logou)] of G-d: G-d’s Word becomes alive in our behaviour.
- Abides forever – Eternity: This is another Kingdom word. We live differently when we have an eternal perspective.
v24: Because or Therefore: Based upon what we have just learned.
- All flesh is as (like) grass…: Peter is again quoting from the Old Testament (the Hebrew Bible – Isaiah 40:6-8) in order to give us a right perspective or proper understanding of what he is telling us.
- All flesh: This is for all of humanity – without exception.
- All the glory of man: G-d is not interested in helping us to accomplish our own human glory. Human glory is a poor reflection of what G-d is about.
- Man: Male and female
- As the flower: It was glorious, it was beautiful for a short season, but it could not endure. The glory of man could not overcome the things of this world. It is only when we belong to the Kingdom that we are able to overcome the things of this world – the resurrection of Yeshua changed everything!
v25: But: In contrast to. G-d’s people live in contrast to the world. That is why the world hates us (John 15:18-19). Those in the world desire to be in control. They desire to have authority and want to be submitted to. They hate us because we bend our knee and submit to the King of kings and the L-rd of lords.
- Word [ῥῆμα (rhēma)]: An utterance or proclamation. This is not our proclamation but G-d’s proclamation or declaration.
- Forever: Again, a Kingdom word that reminds us to have and live with an eternal perspective.
- Has been proclaimed (was preached): Written in the passive. It is not something we can do for ourselves.
- Preached – Proclaimed: Literally the word ‘evangelized’. The term ‘evangelization’ has to do with good news – specifically good news about a Kingdom redemption. The gospel positions us for a Kingdom experience.
- To you: G-d’s plan is good news for us. His plan is good for us.