Evangelical Lutheran Diocese of North America

Tuesday after the Twenty-Sixth Sunday after Trinity Sunday

Posted on November 17, 2020 by Pastor Dulas under Devotions
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Scripture: 1 Peter 1:13—2:10 (NKJV)
1:13 Therefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and rest your hope fully upon the grace that is to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ; 14 as obedient children, not conforming yourselves to the former lusts, as in your ignorance; 15 but as He who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, 16 because it is written, “Be holy, for I am holy.”
17 And if you call on the Father, who without partiality judges according to each one’s work, conduct yourselves throughout the time of your stay here in fear; 18 knowing that you were not redeemed with corruptible things, like silver or gold, from your aimless conduct received by tradition from your fathers, 19 but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot. 20 He indeed was foreordained before the foundation of the world, but was manifest in these last times for you 21 who through Him believe in God, who raised Him from the dead and gave Him glory, so that your faith and hope are in God.
22 Since you have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit in sincere love of the brethren, love one another fervently with a pure heart, 23 having been born again, not of corruptible seed but incorruptible, through the word of God which lives and abides forever, 24 because
“All flesh is as grass, and all the glory of man as the flower of the grass. The grass withers, and its flower falls away,
25 But the word of the Lord endures forever.”
Now this is the word which by the gospel was preached to you.
2:1 Therefore, laying aside all malice, all deceit, hypocrisy, envy, and all evil speaking, 2 as newborn babes, desire the pure milk of the word, that you may grow thereby, 3 if indeed you have tasted that the Lord is gracious.
4 Coming to Him as to a living stone, rejected indeed by men, but chosen by God and precious, 5 you also, as living stones, are being built up a spiritual house, a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. 6 Therefore it is also contained in the Scripture,
“Behold, I lay in Zion a chief cornerstone, elect, precious, and he who believes on Him will by no means be put to shame.”
7 Therefore, to you who believe, He is precious; but to those who are disobedient,
“The stone which the builders rejected has become the chief cornerstone,”
8 and
“A stone of stumbling and a rock of offense.”
They stumble, being disobedient to the word, to which they also were appointed.
9 But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light; 10 who once were not a people but are now the people of God, who had not obtained mercy but now have obtained mercy.
This text presents the stark contrast between Christianity and every other religion/ideology in the world throughout time. The first half of our text explains in detail how this true faith is possible, because you have been “born again” through the grace of God and His abiding Word. It is a simple equation that a child can comprehend: Christianity = God justifies and sanctifies you through grace; every other religion = you must justify and sanctify yourself. The one can deliver all it promises; the other can never deliver what it promises.
These realities are presented with a perfectly unified proclamation of the Old and New Testaments in this first half of the verses appointed for today. Leaving no doubt or confusion that the Elect of God receive this immense honor purely through faith by knowledge of the Logos, while all others bring crushing, terrifying shame upon themselves through unbelief, by the denial of the Logos. Redemption and eternal blessedness really is that simple. This is driven home flawlessly through the use of the Greek word “Logos”, representing both God’s Redeemer in the flesh (in time) and His life giving holy Scripture throughout time.
This Gospel reality is further reinforced in the second half of the text through focusing on Jesus and the New Covenant with reference to the Elect being infants, coupled with Old Testament language of cornerstones, Zion, priesthoods, etc., in reference to Christ’s Church (the Elect gathered around Word and Sacrament) throughout time.
Prayer: Lord may we always cling to You in faith, and be ever ready to present our bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to You, which is our spiritual worship. Amen.
Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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