Verse of the Day Devotion. 1 Peter 1:6 In this you greatly rejoice, even though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been distressed by various trials,
Peter was encouraging the Christians who were scattered throughout the land. “Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, to those who reside as aliens, scattered throughout Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia, who are chosen according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, by the sanctifying work of the Spirit, that you may obey Jesus Christ and be sprinkled with His blood: May grace and peace be yours in fullest measure.” 1 Peter 1:1-2. Peter then encourages them to remember that because of Jesus’ great mercy, He has provided us the ability to be born again to a living hope through the death and resurrection of Jesus. And this living hope is, “to obtain an inheritance which is imperishable and undefiled and will not fade away, reserved in heaven for you, who are protected by the power of God through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.” 1 Peter 1:4-5.
And because of this living hope, “you greatly rejoice, even though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been distressed by various trials,” 1 Peter 1:6. We who love the Lord have our joy even in our present adversity. We have heaven here because Jesus is with us and in us, and after we leave here, we will be with Jesus in the eternal heaven. Though sometimes cast down in our trials, we are glad at heart because a wonderful eternity awaits us. If we were not distressed during our troubles we would not be like Christ Jesus. It is a rule of the kingdom that all the members must be like the Head. They/we are to be like the Head in that day when He shall appear. We will be like him because we will see him just as he is. But we must be like the Head also in His humiliation, or else we cannot be like Him in his glory. “Beloved, now we are children of God, and it has not appeared as yet what we shall be. We know that, when He appears, we shall be like Him, because we shall see Him just as He is.” 1 John 3:2.
Now in verse 7 we see what proves we have faith. “that the proof of your faith, being more precious than gold, which is perishable, even though tested by fire, may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ; and though you have not seen Him, you love Him, and though you do not see Him now, but believe in Him, you greatly rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory, obtaining as the outcome of your faith the salvation of your souls.” 1 Peter 1:7-9. In these verses, Peter gives a fuller explanation of the divine purposes behind the grief which Christians now experience. They may have to experience grief in various trials, so that the genuineness of our faith may result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ. Think of it this way. You shall go into the woods when you please, but if you are very quiet you will not know whether there is a partridge or a pheasant or a rabbit in it. But when you begin to move about or make a noise, you very soon see the living creatures. They rise or they run. So when affliction comes into the soul and makes a disturbance and breaks our peace, up rise our graces. Faith comes out of its hiding, and love leaps from its secret place.
Peter thus shows grief and joy to be normal in the Christian life. Grief arises because of many difficulties encountered in this fallen world, but faith looks to the unseen reality beyond this present existence and rejoices. Christians are being watched by the world. And during trials and tribulations, if we show our faith by remaining true to Jesus, some will look at us and desire to know how we do it. And this may open the door to share with them the truth, and maybe lead them to salvation through Christ.
William Funkhouser MDiv, ThD, Founder and President of True Devotion Ministries.
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