Knowing that Leads to Reverence

Cathy Hurtado

"And if you call on him as Father who judges impartially according to each one's deeds, conduct yourselves with fear (reverence) throughout the time of your exile, knowing that you were ransomed from the futile ways inherited from your forefathers, not with perishable things such as silver or gold,but with the precious blood of Christ, like that of a lamb without blemish or spot."  1 Peter 1:17-19

These words were penned by the Apostle Peter to the believers who had been scattered to other regions because of persecution for their faith. Familiarity was gone. Their life was hard. They were suffering and discouraged. They needed perspective and encouragement.

If we call on the name of Jesus, we, too, are in exile. This world is no longer our home. It is our temporary residence. And, we also face times when life is hard and unsettled, when we feel alone, when we are struggling in unwanted and unplanned for circumstances. It’s easy to look at others and be envious. That’s when perspective is crucial because it is so easy for us to be defeated by our thoughts; thoughts of defeat, unbelief, and distorted truth. Once our thoughts are off course, so is our life.

Peter exhorts us that if we call upon the Father, we should conduct ourselves in reverence. Reverence is awe and respect of God. It recognizes His greatness and His goodness. This reverence comes from our thoughts, what we know about God. Here we are reminded that the Father ransomed us, literally purchased us from our futile or empty way of life with the precious blood of His Son. Whether we came from lives of privilege and abundance, lives of hard work and struggle, or lives of scarcity and abuse, the one thing we all have in common is that our lives were futile (empty) apart from Jesus Christ. We all came to point where we saw our need for a Savior.

As we head into this holiday season, let’s keep our focus upward, in reverent devotion to One who purchased us with the precious blood of His Son.

"The Lord is compassionate and merciful, slow to get angry and filled with unfailing love.
He will not constantly accuse us, nor remain angry forever.
He does not punish us for all our sins; he does not deal harshly with us, as we deserve.
For his unfailing love toward those who fear him is as great as the height of the heavens above the earth.
He has removed our sins as far from us as the east is from the west.
The Lord is like a father to his children, tender and compassionate to those who fear him."

Psalm 103:8-13

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