1 Peter 1 - Steve Wiggins Daily Devotional
“Peter, an apostle of Messiah Yeshua; to the temporary residents of the Dispersion in the provinces of Pontu, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithnynia, chosen according to the foreknowledge of G_d the Father and set apart by the Ruach (Spirit) for obedience and for the sprinkling with the blood of Yeshua the Messiah. May grace and peace be multiplied to you.” 1 Peter 1:1-2
Peter’s introduction is similar to that of James’. He begins his letter to the dispersed Jews. But Peter adds that their situation was only “temporary”.
Driven from the land and persecuted for generations, the dispersed Jews felt forsaken by the L_rd. The first thing they needed to be reminded of was that they were still “chosen, according to the foreknowledge of G_d”. They needed to understand that G_d still loved them and He had a purpose for their lives, both personally and for the Jewish community altogether.
In fact, that is what we all need to hear. Before we were even born, G_d knew we were sinners, yet chose to love us.
“In that while we were yet sinners, Messiah died for us.” Romans 5:8
The next thing these Jews needed to hear was that they were “set apart for obedience” by G_d’s Ruach. G_d’s purpose for us is that we enter into a saving relationship with Him, which affects us to the point that we live to honor and obey Him. G_d offers the same challenge to people of all nationalities, calling us to “bear fruits worthy of repentance”. Luke 3:8
The Diaspora (dispersion) was part of G_d’s rebuke towards Israel for NOT following Him, as He prescribed. Peter is telling his Hebrew brothers that the L_rd had not forsaken them, altogether. It is a message to us as well. No matter how far you have fallen, G_d has one message for you: “Follow Me!” Yeshua’s blood has provided atonement for the sins of all who would repent and receive salvation. More than temporary, situational forgiveness, Messiah’s atonement covers ALL sin: past, present, and future.
Here, in the introduction to Peter’s letter, we have the whole gospel. 1) G_d is Tri-unity (Abba, Ruach, Messiah). 2) G_d knew our sin, yet chose to love us. 3) By the power of His Ruach, we have been set apart to obey Him. 4) We are guaranteed G_d’s approval, not because of our righteousness, but because the object of our faith is the infinite worth of Messiah’s atoning blood, shed for the remission of our sinfulness.
~Steve Wiggins, Associate Leader, Worship Leader
Daily Devotional, Thursday, November 28, 2013