February 8, 2010

Yesterday, today ,and forever ( God doesn't change): 1 Peter 1-3

"Blue sunset at Jordan River" by Ivan Makarov
There is a river that runs from Genesis to Revelation,
blood that flows throughout generations-Chantel (C)2010

I was reading 1 Peter 1-3, and when I got to the part about Noah, it struck me. From the beginning of time as we understand it to be ( In the beginning, God- Gen. 1:1), God has and is consistent about certain principles. I do not claim to be exhaustive in this list, but as God guides me I will list.

Holiness- or separation
1 Peter1:13 states the commandment that God gave to the children of Israel in the desert: " Be ye Holy, for I am Holy". So it wasn't a new thing, though for the some believers it may have been. Because God is holy, we, his children, are to be holy. He says it in other places, "Do not be conformed to the world" ( Rom.12:2), "come out from among them, and be separated" (2 cor. 6:17 ) Be not unequally yoked together with unbelievers" (2 cor. 6:14 ); the list goes on. In the beginning, God had to remove his own creation from the garden, because of disobedience, sin. God had to call Abram OUT FROM his homeland to dedicate him to himself. Israel had to COME OUT from Egypt and be set apart from all the nations around them. Holiness is the house of the Lord. If we are God's dwelling place, we must be holy.

Blood sacrifice for salvation (payment for sins)
1 Peter 3:18 declares that Christ suffered once for sins...that he might bring us to God. There had to be a shedding of blood, and so Christ suffered to be our blood sacrifice. Hebrews 9:22 says that without blood there is no remission of sins. To remit is to make a payment- so the payment for sins is blood. Why did God choose blood? I do not know, but He, being God, has the sovereignty to do this.Edited  5/21/2012 to add: I have since learned through the Word that God chose blood because "the life is in the blood" as stated in Leviticus 17:11 and Leviticus 17: 14 When Adam and Eve sinned and they were sent from the Garden, blood was shed, for God took the skins of an animal to COVER them. When Israel was delivered from death, blood was shed and put on the door posts as a sign to the death angel to pass over them. When we are baptized in the Lord's name, we apply the blood of Jesus, as Peter said, in Acts 2:38, "...and be baptized everyone of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the REMISSION OF SINS." So  Jesus's name is synonymous for the atoning blood. Declaring his name in baptism is like the application of the blood on the door post. As in 1 Peter 1:19, we are redeemed with the precious blood of Christ.

Repentance, Baptism, and following the Holy Ghost ( Spirit) saves us
1 Peter 3:20 referred to a type, or a pattern that is consistent throughout the word of God. Here Peter refers to Noah who believed in the Word God gave him. Though it seemed foolish to believe in a thing never seen before in history- this was his faith. He turned from the pattern of those around him and started working toward a new goal, the ark- this is a type of repentance, which means to turn away. He and seven others were saved by water, for the water washed away the old world with its sins - a type of baptism - and set him on a mountain. In 1 Peter 3:20b-21, Peter says that "in the days of Noah, while the ark was a preparing, wherein few, that is, eight souls were saved by water. 21 The like figure whereunto [a type pointing to which] even baptism does also now save us (not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God,) by the resurrection of Jesus Christ:" Noah was comforted by the dove that went and brought to him a sign of life. This is a type of the Holy Ghost or Holy Spirit, as Jesus told the disciples that the comforter is. ( John 14:26) And when Noah came out of the ark, he had a brand new lease on life. There are other examples of this process: such as the Israelite turning away from Egypt ( repentance) , passing through the red sea which washed away the egyptians ( baptism) and the guidance by the cloud and the pillar of fire ( the Holy Spirit). In another example, to sanctify themselves for service, the priests were required to sacrifice ( repentance) wash at the brazen laver outside of the inner courts( baptism), and then when they obeyed what God ordered , the glory of the Lord sat on the throne ( Holy Spirit).

God is consistent and unchanging. He has always desired to reunite with us, and he provided the same method from the beginning of time. The conclusion of the matter is this: Our perfect God, His perfect Plan- thy word Oh Lord is forever settled in heaven (Psa.119:89). Who are we to argue with that?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Preach it sister!
Your blog is a blessing to many and may it reach those seeking who need to hear it as well.God bless you both as you continue on with this ministry.