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1 Peter 4 - Expect Attacks

You face daily war & attacks. The Bible's advice to defend yourself? Weaponize your mind.

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1 Peter 4 Summary

The opening verses of this chapter depend on a concept that Peter has already introduced: The passions of the flesh (sarx) which wage war against your soul (2:11).

Often times we think of sin as being like a pesky fly, but Peter reminds us of the all out onslaught that Sarx is attacking us with every day, trying to drag you into sin.

To defend against these attacks, it's critical that you follow the advice at the beginning of the chapter: arm yourself with Christ's way of thinking (v1). In other words, doctrines and theology are not some dusty old bits of useless trivia. If you expect to live a life no longer controlled by human passions, but for the will of God (v1), you need to prepare your mind for action (v7 - translated as sober-minded in the NIV and ESV).

The second half of the chapter opens with the ominous phrase "the end of all things is near..." But this doesn't mean what you probably think it means.

The common understanding of 'the end' is that all things will be over and done with, like when The End comes on the screen after a movie.

There are multiple Greek words Peter could have used if that's what he meant, but instead he used a word that we still, albeit rarely, use in English: teleos. It means 'goal / completion.'

So we could translate v7 this way: the end goal of all things is near [and that goal is the salvation of your soul and the resurrection of your body].

In this sense, the end is just the beginning!

That's why v8-19 encourage you to start living with this ultimate goal in mind right now, because it's near.

Dig Deeper

We live in a time when Christians who strive to remain faithful to God's commands are mocked and ridiculed.

The more things change, the more they stay the same. Peter wrote two millennia ago that unbelievers are surprised when you do not join them in the same flood of debauchery, and they malign you (v4).

So you're under constant attack, both from within (your own sinful nature is at war with you) and from the pagan culture you live in. This is why you must continue all the more reading God's Word and gathering to hear it proclaimed.

AAA Prayer:

  • ACKNOWLEDGE WHO GOD IS: Your faithful Creator (v19) and the one who provides you strength to serve Him (v11)

  • ALIGN YOUR LIFE WITH GOD'S WILL: Pray that God will enable you to rejoice even as you participate in the sufferings of Christ (v13)




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