I Peter 1:13 Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and hope to the end for the grace that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ;
14 As obedient children, not fashioning yourselves according to the former lusts in your ignorance:
15 But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation;
16 Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.
17 And if ye call on the Father, who without respect of persons judgeth according to every man’s work, pass the time of your sojourning here in fear:
18 Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers;
19 But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot:
20 Who verily was foreordained before the foundation of the world, but was manifest in these last times for you,
21 Who by him do believe in God, that raised him up from the dead, and gave him glory; that your faith and hope might be in God.
22 Seeing ye have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit unto unfeigned love of the brethren, see that ye love one another with a pure heart fervently:
23 Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever.
24 For all flesh is as grass, and all the glory of man as the flower of grass. The grass withereth, and the flower thereof falleth away:
25 But the word of the Lord endureth for ever. And this is the word which by the gospel is preached unto you.
Salvation is a precious gift of God. The Bible declares that the gift of salvation is one of the greatest ways God chose to show His love for mankind. The natural man can never understand the love of God. The natural man operates on an entirely different plain and the love he or she expresses is not built upon truth, but rather on feelings.
If we look at our text we see something very important in the entire passage but I want us to think about verses 18-19 for a moment. We will look further at this passage another day, but the matter of our salvation is such an important doctrine to consider and to know.
As we mentioned in earlier studies, Moses tried to spoil God’s wonderful gift of salvation. We know that he did not do so deliberately. Moses was a man that was given great responsibility by God. He never wanted to be the leader of a nation. He argued with God and tried to get out of his calling. However, God knew better. God knew what He was doing. He chose Moses because the Bible tells us that Moses was a very meek man. God knew the heart of Moses. He knew that Moses would be the right leader for the nation of Israel in his day. He also promised to equip Moses for the task. God is not a liar. He does exactly as He promises.
There were times when Moses was overwhelmed with his task. Those times were the result of Moses being in the flesh, and not in the Spirit. God was always there to help Moses.
In the matter of the striking of the rock, when God told him to speak to it, God was there as well. God had sent Aaron to be there with Moses. Aaron was the high priest. He could have helped Moses in his moment of need, but both men were very much in the flesh in that moment. Moses could not blame Aaron for his sin. He needed to draw his strength from the Lord. He chose not to do that and the result was that he spoiled a very important picture of God’s way of salvation. He spoiled a picture, but not the doctrine. God dealt with Moses in love and with holiness. It was not just Moses that needed to understand the importance of God’s commands. The entire nation of Israel, that was there complaining to God and Moses, needed to understand God’s way is always right. The entire world population also needed to know that God’s way is the ONLY way. In John 14:6 Jesus declared:
John 14:6 Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.
There is no other Saviour beside the Lord Jesus Christ. God loved the world so much that He showed Moses and the nation that what Moses did could not be accepted. The people received water, even though Moses disobeyed, but Moses would not be allowed to enter the land of Canaan. Canaan is not a picture of salvation. If it were, then Moses could not be saved. Canaan was a land that God used to show the nation of Israel the importance of knowing Him and following Him faithfully. They experienced great blessings when they obeyed Him. They also suffered greatly when they refused to obey Him. Israel is in that land today and they are receiving some blessings from God but not nearly all that God would want them to have. They will know His blessings in a great way in that land, but more importantly in their hearts, when they turn to Him in repentance and faith. That day is coming.
Back to our topic. The false doctrine of “second chances” suggests that with regard to marriage, if a man and a woman cannot get along, they can divorce and find someone else and marry that person and try again. That false doctrine says they can have God’s blessing on that second or third or fourth, etc. union. It is an amazing suggestion but it comes from the devil, not from God.
God told Adam and Eve that He created them as the first of all people and that in marriage their sons were to leave father and mother and cleave to the wife. Jesus took the ungodly false teachers of His day back to Genesis 2 to refute their false teaching on marriage. He also stated that with one exception, those who would disregard God’s law, would be guilty of the sin of adultery.
The world is just as the false teachers of Jesus’ day. They do not believe that God’s words are all that important.
Matthew 19:9 And I say unto you, Whosoever shall put away his wife, except it be for fornication, and shall marry another, committeth adultery: and whoso marrieth her which is put away doth commit adultery.
The exception here is in the context of “fornication”. Fornication is not marital infidelity. It is an immoral act committed by an unmarried person. The way to understand any Bible teaching is to look at the immediate context and then at the context of the book and then further abroad in the Bible.
Matthew 1 gives us the background to the birth of the Lord Jesus Christ. In that background, God stated that the conception that would occur in Mary’s womb would be of the Holy Ghost. We also read that Mary was “espoused” to a man named Joseph. In verse 20 of that chapter we read that Joseph loved Mary and did not want to make a public example of her. Joseph assumed that Mary was guilty of committing fornication. He thought she had been unfaithful to him, not just in her heart, but in her actions. The angel of the Lord stopped Joseph from “putting away” his wife because Mary had not sinned. She was called his “wife” because the espousal period was binding and required a bill of divorcement to break. On paper, Mary was Joseph’s wife at that time. Verse 25 of that chapter tells us that Joseph “knew her not” until after the birth of the Lord Jesus Christ.
Jesus Christ was born of a virgin. Their marriage was consummated after the birth of the Lord Jesus Christ. Joseph truly loved Mary and Mary truly loved Joseph. They kept themselves pure and their marriage lasted until one of them died. That is God’s design.
When I was a young man, no one taught me the importance of marriage. I observed my parents’ marriage. I saw other married couples in our church. However, I do not remember any teaching of the significance of marriage or how to prepare for it.
I approached this very important doctrine of God with great ignorance. It is the grace of God that protected me from making a fool of myself in that matter. He led me to the woman that I married. I needed to travel to the next province to find that “good wife” that God wanted for me. Lord willing, we will have been married 50 years this coming February if the Lord tarries and we live that long.
God’s design for every marriage is that each marriage be a picture of His salvation.
Ephesians 5:31 For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh.
32 This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the church.
Any minister or judge that dares to stand before God and pronounce someone husband and wife without His permission or authority, is in big trouble with the Lord. Any couple that submits themselves to such a minister and accepts his twisted theology to marry when God says no, is in big trouble with God.
I am not the judge. I am simply called of God to teach His Word faithfully. I will answer to Him for how I handle His precious Word. If I choose to ignore what He says, He will judge me. Those who listen to me are also accountable before God. If I teach someone wrong, they need to check it out with God’s Word and follow what God says, not what I say. If I teach what is right and a person rejects that, they will answer to God for their sin.
As our opening verses state, salvation is through the precious blood of the Lord Jesus Christ. That blood is far too precious for me or any other person to trample it under foot. If you want God’s blessing in your life, you need to submit to God’s authority and be sure you have been saved through that precious blood. If that is the case, then He will guide you into all truth. He does not give a mixed message. He speaks truth. The truth shall make you free.