I Peter 1:22 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.
As we begin this devotional I would like to encourage those who are saved to continue to pray for the peace of Jerusalem. As you probably know, the situation in Israel is not good and it is getting worse. The U.S. is somewhat involved as well and the war is also affecting shipping in that area. There are several nations that are intent on destroying Israel. We know they will not succeed. We know that lives are being lost on both sides in this conflict. God commands those who are saved to bless Israel and to pray for the peace of Jerusalem. Mr. Netanyahu needs to be saved as does his cabinet. Most of the nation of Israel needs to be saved. There are Jews still scattered across the world and many of those need to be saved. Anti-semitism is on the rise. It is a very sobering situation to watch. Of course we need to understand that there are also many Gentiles who need to be saved. The conflict in the Middle East is primarily a spiritual conflict. Peace is a gift that God alone can provide. Those who reject Him, cannot know His peace. They have a pseudo peace that is extremely fragile and also a facade.
We pray for the Lord’s soon return and we know that His return will usher in the 7 year Tribulation period. The antichrist will be revealed and he is called “the man of sin”. His rule will be evil from start to finish. Many Jews and Christians will be killed by him. Worse than that, many lost people will go to hell because they chose to reject the truth.
If you are reading this but not saved, today would be the right day for you to be saved. You are in grave danger every moment you continue to reject God’s gift of salvation. Your life on this earth is short. At the moment of death, you will be in hell if you choose to remain in your lost state. That will be the beginning of your eternal destiny, first in hell and then in the lake of fire. There is no escaping from this judgment if you do not get saved. If you turn to God in repentance and are saved, you will have a home in heaven from the moment of death and you will also have the opportunity to know the peace of God now. There is nothing this world has to offer that is worth sacrificing God’s truth and forgiveness for. Salvation is something that must be received prior to death. After death, there is no further opportunity to be saved. The Bible is clear that the default position for every human being is death and hell. Each person must choose to turn to God in repentance and put their faith in Jesus’ provision for salvation.
In I Peter, God directed Peter to write about the blessings of salvation. As we see in verse 22, those who are truly saved, have purified their souls in obeying the truth. This again reminds us that salvation is a choice that must be made personally. The purifying spoken of is not works salvation. That purifying is by surrendering to God and accepting His purifying work in your soul. It is the blood of Jesus Christ that washes away the curse of sin.
The repentant sinner is the one who obeys the truth through the Spirit. We have already noted that the Holy Spirit is at work in every lost person’s life to convince the person of sin and of righteousness and of judgment. It is important for the lost person to listen to the convicting work of the Holy Spirit and be saved.
The evidence of Biblical salvation will be a genuine love for the brethren. The word translated as “unfeigned” means “sincere” and “undisguised”. True believers do not put on a show for others. There is a genuine concern and care for the brethren. True saints want to see other true saints know God’s peace and blessing. This is again why a true local church is so important. It is through the local church that brethren get to know one another. It is in the local church that brethren can share their concerns with one another. It is there that we learn of the needs of others and how we can best help them. Prayer is always important, but sometimes it also involves giving a helping hand with something. It may also involve giving a word of counsel to a brother. True saints cannot sit quietly by as they see another brother struggling with some sin or with some temptation.
Peter stated further that our love for the brethren needs to be with a pure heart fervently. The word translated “fervently” speaks of “earnest” and “intense”. It is not being a busybody who is trying to interfere or control another person. It is a genuine interest in another brother with a desire to help that brother to know the love of God in a greater way.
In verse 23 we are reminded again that those who are saved are born again with incorruptible seed, by the Word of God. The Word of God is eternal. It liveth and abideth for ever. This is again why any true child of God should understand that the tampering that the devil has done with God’s Word cannot be accepted. We cannot accept the deception of so many religious leaders who will use several different perversions in their preaching and teaching because they happen to “like the way a certain perversion puts it”. Christians need to feed on the truth. Notice again in verse 22 that true saints obey the truth through the Spirit. The Holy Spirit is the third person of the Godhead. All three are one and they are in full agreement with one another. God the Father will never say anything that Jesus Christ does not agree with. The same is true regarding the Holy Spirit. God the Father is exactly that, He is the Father. God the Son and God the Holy Spirit are in full agreement with the Father.
It should be easy to understand that over 100 perversions that say different things and yet claiming to be the voice of God, cannot all be right. God does not cause confusion. He also does not suggest that His Word can be ignored without consequence. We can also know that it is possible for those who are truly born again, to know what is truth. The Holy Spirit will guide the saint into the truth.
The Word of God is incorruptible. Even though the devil has been busy putting out corruptions of God’s Word, the true Word of God will always be available to man. God will see to this. The Spirit of God will guide the child of God to the truth.
Peter further reminds us that all flesh is as grass. Methuselah lived the longest of any man, but he still died. We all die. We are like grass. The glory of man is as the flower of grass. God tells us that the grass withereth and the flower thereof falleth away. Grass cannot handle drought very well. It dries up and dies if left dry for too long. The flower of grass only has a short window of life. The flower is only there for a short time and then it is gone.
In contrast, God says His Word endureth for ever. That is the good news. Every generation can know the same truth. God has not changed His mind. He has not contradicted Himself in anything. We can know the same truth that Peter knew. God has preserved His Word. It will never be lost. The communists have tried for years to destroy God’s Word. They have failed. Many communists have died, but the Bible is still around. It still has all the power that it ever had. Many people do not like that power and that is why they choose a perversion. The power of God is not in the perversions.
Peter reminded the readers that it is this enduring Word of the Lord that was preached unto the saints at that time. That is the gospel that Peter preached and we still have access to that same gospel today. Even though the devil has tried to distort the gospel and many people have chosen to believe the distortion, the truth is still available, and every person will be judged according to the truth, not the perversion of their choice.
It is imperative that each person listen to the work of the Holy Spirit in your heart. Don’t go by feelings. They are fickle. God will guide each person to the truth, if the person will humbly submit to the Lord. If you have made up your mind and refuse to be led to the truth, that is your choice but it is a very dangerous and costly choice. Ask God to guide you to the truth. He is a good God and He will guide you to the truth if you desire that.