September 19: God’s True Grace

Read I Peter 1:1-12

Peter knew something about the true grace of God. I mean, he really knew it. From the moment he stepped out of the boat and right on top of the water (Matt. 14:25ff) to the moment Jesus took him for a walk on the beach and handed him forgiveness all wrapped up in the form of the greatest gift Peter would ever know (Jn. 21:15-25). Yes, Peter knew this true grace of God. And it changed everything about him. It changed how Peter lived. It’s what made him write this about God,

In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope (v3).

Peter knew about the shielding of God’s power through faith because he had experienced it firsthand. His experience with the unbelievable grace of God Himself gave Peter everything he needed to live fully alive for the rest of his days.

You see, after Jesus left this earth, Peter led the charge to spread the news. He went from being a lowly fisherman to a dynamic speaker of truth. He went from catching fish for a living to healing beggars at the temple gate. And Peter knew that there was only one explanation for this crazy transformation. It was the power of God.

He also knew the suffering, the trials and persecution. For, he had not only been a witness to the suffering Jesus endured, he had also been imprisoned and persecuted for sharing the life-giving truth about Jesus Christ. And still, Peter could write

These (trials) have come so that your faith — of greater worth than gold . . . may be proved genuine and may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed (v7).

Still, he was able to write about an inexpressible and glorious joy and of receiving the goal of … faith, the salvation of (our) souls (v9).

Of all the disciples that followed Jesus from the beginning, perhaps Peter would be one of the last we would have guessed to write something as shocking as this. The idea that inexpressible and glorious joy is available even in the midst of persecution, heartache, trouble. But Peter knew the renewing and powerful grace of God perhaps better than any of the other disciples. For he had received it from Jesus Christ Himself after personally denying Him at His most needy hour.

Do you know God’s grace that well? And, even more, have you let it change you so drastically?

brw

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