Today's Chapter: 1 Peter 1
PUT THE FIVE W'S TO WORK FOR YOU: Peter's opening sentence is really complex, but it also tells us quite a bit about the rest of the letter, as well as ourselves.
WHO IS THIS LETTER WRITTEN TO: To God's elect. This letter is addressed to you.
WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO BE ELECT: An elect person is one 'who has been chosen' by God to receive His grace that comes through the Holy Spirit who is sanctifying you (making you holy) . For more information on the doctrine of election, watch our two minute video on Romans 9, or our Dig Deeper post on Ephesians 1.
WHEN WERE YOU ELECTED: God chose you to be His own long before you were born or even conceived. He chose you before He created anything, because even at that point He knew (had foreknowledge of) everything about you. This is why sometimes election is referred to as predestination.
WHERE: Peter's original audience included exiled Christians scattered out in the hinterlands of the Roman empire, but the Holy Spirit, who breathed through Peter has he wrote this letter, meant it for people just like you: people who are exiled from their true home and scattered in the world.
WHY DID GOD ELECT ME, AND WHY DID PETER WRITE THIS LETTER: Both of these questions have the same answer: God chose you, and wrote you these words so that you might be sanctified by the Spirit, and would be obedient to Jesus Christ.
ALREADY, BUT NOT YET: Peter's writing reflects a tension present throughout the New Testament. You've already been given new birth into a living hope (v3), and you've been filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy (v9), but you've not yet received the full benefit of salvation. You still wait for your inheritance kept in heaven for you (v4) and to see Jesus with your own eyes (v8).
ON YOUR MARKS, GET SET, GO: Verse 13 is one of the best in the Bible at capturing what it means to be a Christian exiled in the world. Memorize this paraphrase of the ESV version:
Prepare your mind for action by setting your hope fully on the grace that will be brought to you when Jesus is revealed.
Follow the AAA Prayer Pattern:
ACKNOWLEDGE WHO GOD IS: Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has given us new birth into a living hope (v3)
ALIGN YOUR LIFE WITH GOD'S WILL: Just as the one who called you is holy, be holy in all you do (v15)
ASK GOD FOR WHAT YOU NEED: