Hope and Inheritance

I'll be preaching in the morning from 1 Peter 1:3-5. Since the text is fresh on my mind, I'll put forth a few thoughts:
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! According to his great mercy, he has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, 4 to an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you, 5 who by God's power are being guarded through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. (ESV)
First, I think it's important to note that Peter isn't an unemotional, detached lecturer when it comes to talking about God. He doesn't give us a dry or dispassionate speech. Instead, he begins with worship: "Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ!" Peter has encountered Jesus. He has been a witness to Jesus' life, death, and resurrection; therefore, he must praise Him.

Second, the hope that comes through the resurrection of Jesus is not a flimsy type of hope. This isn't the type of hope that is uncertain like "I hope my Saturn doesn't stop working this year" or "I hope I get an good grade on my test." No, the hope we have in Christ is a living hope. This is a hope actual worth hoping in because it a certain hope. Just as Christ showed that death could not hold Him, so also death will not be the final word for those who have faith in Him--to those who have experienced the new birth.

Third, Peter describes our living hope in terms of inheritance. I find it interesting that he only talks about it in the negative: "never perish, never spoil, never fade" (or "imperishable, undefiled, unfading as in the ESV). Peter likely does this because it is hard for us to imagine a world where sin, death, pain, decay, etc. are not a normal occurance. But our inheritance is kept from all such things. It is "kept in heaven for you." (There's much more to be said about inheritance, especially the OT background...but this post is already getting longer than I expected! Read Revelation 21.)

Fourth, Peter says that by God's power we are "being guarded through faith." In Greek, this is a present participle which gives the sense of a continual action. God is presently and continually guarding us. God is for us. Just as He is keeping our inheritance secure, so also He is keeping us for "a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time."

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