1 Peter 5:6 Humble Yourself

“Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time.” 1 Peter 5:6

Peter starts out this final chapter of his letter telling the older people to not be a hard boss over the people. Then he tells the younger people to submit to the older people. Now he is telling everyone to humble themselves.

Being humble is not putting yourself first. The world loves to look at self first, in fact, nearly every person loves to do this. Most people are concerned about their problems or about telling others what is going on in their life.

In this process of telling about themselves, they will like to brag about what they have done or not done. As they do this they will lift themselves up as better than others. This even occurs in the church.

God wants you to humble yourself before others as you humble yourself under Him. He is the One with authority, with power, and with absolute control. Without God you cannot even breathe. You would not be here without God. So why are you willing to boast and make yourself higher than others?

Look at some of the great men of the bible, Joseph, Moses, Jesus. Each of these men were humble before men and God. They did not think of themselves as great leaders. In fact, Moses tried to fight God on being the leader. God used them because they were humble and yet willing. In the end God lifted them up as great men and leaders for God.

Do not try to force the door open to being lifted up. That is the way the world works and what Satan wants.

Lift others up first. Be willing to seek to meet their needs first and promote them as the better person. God will open the doors for others to do the same for you. He will lift you up at the proper time. Seek God and be humble today.

I pray today that God will show you how to live before men; that God will give you a heart to lift others up first; that you will trust God in taking care of you; and that God will lift you up at the proper time.

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1 Peter 4:12 No Surprises

“Dear friends, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal that has come on you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you.” 1 Peter 4:12

When everything in life is going just like a person wants, he is happy and content. When things start to go bad and everything is falling apart, he then stands back surprised and wondering why everything is falling apart. People begin to question themselves, God and others when things go bad. Often they think that they are the only ones going through that struggle.

No one really likes it when things are not going the way they “should”, at least according to their plan of the way it should go. The world can think that way, since they do not have any thing greater to trust in.

Every believer must think again about being surprised at the struggles happening. Peter tells you that you are not alone in this. You are not the only one going through a fiery ordeal.

A fiery ordeal is something that is hot and painful. Being burned by fire is extremely painful. No one every wants this. Yet, it is common. God uses the fiery ordeals to test you.

When things are going good, it is easy to say that you trust in God and believe in Jesus. It is a much bigger challenge to still say you trust in God and believe in Jesus when everything is falling apart and you feel like you are being burned alive.

Jesus gave a promise that every believer would suffer just like He had to suffer. This suffering is to see where you really stand with God. It is to make you more like Jesus. It is to draw you closer to God. It is to help you be a witness of God’s great love and care for you.

As you go through a challenge in this life, rejoice. Rejoice knowing that God does really love you. Rejoice that God is right there with you. Know that God will bring you through it. And don’t be surprised at what is happening.

I pray today that God will reveal His plans for you in the challenges of your life; that you will keep your eyes focused on Jesus; that you will not be surprised at challenges God brings your way; and that God will make you more like Jesus everyday.

1 Peter 4:7 Alert And Sober

“The end of all things is near. Therefore be alert and of sober mind so that you may pray.” 1 Peter 4:7

After Peter talks about how the world will live in sin and the believer is not to live that way, he brings up the end being near. He was there when Jesus had left the earth and had stated that He would return soon. Peter is most likely thinking that Jesus will be showing up any day now. Now that it is nearly 2,000 years later, how much closer is that end?

Keeping in mind that the end is near, he tells believers to be alert and of a sober mind.

Being alert is knowing what is going on around you. It is easy to be awake and see stuff, but it is different to know what is actually going on. Turn on the news and you can see what is happening around the world. However, that is just the surface of what is happening.

A good example is watch a movie with a good sounding story line on the surface. Underlining that story is the desire to promote some particular sinful habit as acceptable. One who is alert will see that subliminal message being promoted.

Along with being alert, one must also be sober. This is thinking with a clear mind. It is easy to let the moment cloud the real truth. Peter had also talked about going through suffering as a good thing. One who is not sober will only see the challenges and suffering as bad. The one who is sober will see that God is in control and has a reason for the suffering to be allowed.

Living this way will allow you to pray correctly. You will be able to pray God’s will in every situation. When you see the news, you will know what really needs to be prayed for.

Stay focused in God’s Word and in prayer. Keep your eyes on Jesus. Be filled with His Holy Spirit. These are ways to keep you alert and sober. It will change how you see things and how you pray.

I pray today that God will open your eyes to what He is doing; that you will see the deception of the world; that you will be filled with God’s Spirit; that God will help you to pray His will and desire; and that you will live according to God’s ways and be His witness.

1 Peter 3:13-14 Doing The Right Thing

“Who is going to harm you if you are eager to do good? But even if you should suffer for what is right, you are blessed. Do not fear their threats; do not be frightened.” 1 Peter 3:13-14

Usually when a person does the correct thing, he does not have to suffer. No one goes up against him. However, there are times when doing the right thing can hurt or someone can go against him.

Telling people about Jesus is the correct thing to do. God has called every believer to do this. Yet, there are times that when a person tells someone about Jesus, that person or someone else will get mad and do something about it. Does that mean the person should stop talking about Jesus? No. He should continue because that is what God wants.

Most people think about this type of suffering for doing good. However, there is another way of suffering for doing good, that is not so pleasant.

When you see that the cashier made a mistake in giving you back more change than you should have received for a purchase, what do you do? Most people will pocket the money and say that God has blessed them. The truth is that you have just stolen from that business. The hard part is giving the money back…doing the right thing.

More challenging is when that dollar amount is very high. Will you keep the money or will you turn it back in? This becomes more challenging when you have already spent that money.

Although money is a common way of seeing this, there are other ways that doing the right thing can cause some suffering. Telling the truth can sometimes come at a cost to you, but it will benefit you in the end.

Do not fear the consequences of doing the right thing. Ultimately you are doing what God wants you to do. It is better to obey God, then yourself or others.

Always strive to do the right thing and trust God in and through it. You will be blessed, regardless what the world says or does to you.

I pray today that God will give you wisdom to make the right choices; that God will strengthen you to do the right thing; that God will give you His peace in doing the right thing; that God will bless you for obeying His words; and that God will use you to reach the lost for Jesus.

1 Peter 3:9 Paybacks

“Do not repay evil with evil or insult with insult. On the contrary, repay evil with blessing, because to this you were called so that you may inherit a blessing.” 1 Peter 3:9

In this world getting even with someone is very common and accepted. Everyone wants to pay back some for what was done to them. It is often looked as the saying in the Old Testament of “eye for eye, tooth for tooth”.

There are thousands of lawyers out there who are ready and willing to take someone to court to help get the desired payback. That someone can be an individual, a family or even a large corporation. It is always someone with some money. The idea is to hurt the person for some wrong that they had done. People will hire these lawyers to get back at that person.

Many other people cannot afford the lawyers, or just do not want to get even in the legal way. They will take matters into their own hands and fight back. Some will physically harm the person or business, others will slander them to harm them, while others will just ignore them. All of these ways are the same in getting revenge in a way to hurt them.

Peter states here not to repay evil with evil, but with blessings. Jesus had already stated that every believer is to love their enemies and bless them. This is the very thing that Jesus had done with His enemies when He was on the cross. He blessed them by asking the Father to forgive them. You were also included in that prayer.

If Jesus can pour out blessings on His enemies as He is being crucified, can you not give out some blessings on one who does wrong against you?

God may be using your enemies to help get you to the right spot at the right time. Think about Joseph and his brothers, if they had not done wrong to him, he never would have been a leader in Egypt.

Allow God to use whoever He wants to build you. Pray for those who do wrong against you and pray blessings on them, not curses. See what God can do for you and with them. It might amaze you.

I pray today that God will fill you with His love for your enemies; that God will strengthen you to bless your enemies; that God will use every wrong against you for your good; and that you will be a shining light for Jesus in this world.

1 Peter 3:3-4 Inner Beauty

“Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as elaborate hairstyles and the wearing of gold jewelry or fine clothes. Rather, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight.” 1 Peter 3:3-4

Peter is talking directly to the wives right now, yet it is some information that can be used by anyone. In a short way of saying it Peter is telling them to stop being so concerned about award appearances and deal with how a person looks on the inside.

It is common for people to think about women when it comes to concern about appearances. Look in the stores and there are several aisles in every department store for women’s beauty products, from make-ups, to skin care, to hair care. There are even stores where that is all they sell. It goes from beauty products. Then there are the jewelry in stores and the jewelry stores themselves.

Yet, while it is most common for women, there are also a lot of men’s care products. There are many colognes, hair care products and suits and ties available for men.

Women try to look beautiful, while men are trying to be handsome. Both are trying to look great on the outside.

There are some people who have looked great on the outside, yet were mass killers. Their inside heart and life was ugly.

On the outside you may look great, but inside you are a turmoil. You may be stressed about money, family, vehicles, jobs, or something else. Your focus in life may be on getting that next promotion or something else.

These are things that make you look horrible, even though you may look great on the outside. God wants you to have a quiet and gentle spirit. Jesus was at peace at all times and in all situations. He was gentle with everyone, never causing any harm physically or emotionally.

What is your life saying to others?

Are you showing God’s peace and gentleness in your words and actions? Or are you just trying to look nice by how you dress?

Have Jesus inside of you shining out. It will make you more beautiful, or handsome than the best dressed person in the world.

I pray today that God will reveal His beauty to you; that you will clothe yourself with Jesus and His righteousness; that you will have a gentle and quiet spirit; and that you will show Jesus to the world.

1 Peter 2:24 A Reason To Not Sin

“He himself bore our sins in his body on the cross, so that we might die to sins and live for righteousness; by his wounds you have been healed.” 1 Peter 2:24

People of the world look at what Jesus did on the cross and think He was either crazy or it is a made up story. They just cannot understand why someone totally innocent would be put to death and willing be allowed to be put to death. Peter is quoting from a part in Isaiah stating that Jesus died on the cross to take on the sins of every person.

Jesus was beaten for every sin that every person ever did. This includes your sins. Think about this for a minute and let it sink in.

Think back just about your childhood. How many times did you disobey your parents? How many times did you disobey your teacher in school? Just think about these two factors.

Now imagine that you had to be beaten with a whip with rocks in it. The beating would be one strike for every individual disobedience you did wrong as a child. Do you think you could even survive the beatings?

This is what Jesus did for you. Not only did He take the beatings for your childhood disobedience but also for you as an adult. The number of beatings increases astronomically.

Jesus did this so that you can die to sin, so that you will no longer sin. He has removed the curse of sin in your life so that you can live the right life for God.

When temptation comes your way, keep your eyes on Jesus and what He did for you. Doing this will allow you to turn away from that sin. It will give you strength to live for God.

The sins you do are only for a moment in time of pleasure. The punishment for those sins are for eternity, never-ending.

If Jesus can bear our sins and not sin, He can give you the strength to not sin. Are you willing to turn from sin for Him?

Are you willing to die to all sin and live for God?

I pray today that you will get a new vision of what Jesus did for you on the cross; that you will die to all sin; that you will learn to live for Jesus; that you will live a righteous life in Jesus; and that you will be the light of Jesus in this dark world.