Faith in the age of “unless I see” Part 2

Scripture:  Read 1 Peter 1:8-9

“Though you have not seen him, you love him.  Though you do not now see him, you believe in him and rejoice with joy that is inexpressible and filled with glory, obtaining the outcome of your faith, the salvation of your souls.”  1 Peter 1:8-9

Observations: O Peter comments on the common experience of all the Christians who have come after the birth, ministry, crucifixion, and ascension of Jesus.  Although Peter walked and lived with Jesus in the flesh, the new believers have not.

 

But this has not kept them from having a relationship with the Living Risen Jesus Christ.  Far from it!  Though they have not seen him, they love him, believe in him, and rejoice in Him.  They are receiving the salvation of their souls.

Applications:  This passage warms my heart and causes me to overflow with Sometimes we are tempted to think that we must see in order to believe.  But actually trust and faith is a grace gift of God drawn now from the clues for belief contained in the Gospel and activated by the Holy Spirit.

The disciple Thomas struggled with believing that Jesus had risen from the dead.  In fact he told the other Disciples that he would not believe until he had seen and touched Jesus.  Jesus gracefully appeared to Thomas in a gathering of the Disciples and addressed Thomas — rebuilding and restoring Thomas’ faith.  Notice what Jesus said:

24One of the twelve disciples, Thomas (nicknamed the Twin), was not with the others when Jesus came. 25They told him, “We have seen the Lord!”

But he replied, “I won’t believe it unless I see the nail wounds in his hands, put my fingers into them, and place my hand into the wound in his side.”

26Eight days later the disciples were together again, and this time Thomas was with them. The doors were locked; but suddenly, as before, Jesus was standing among them. “Peace be with you,” he said. 27Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here, and look at my hands. Put your hand into the wound in my side. Don’t be faithless any longer. Believe!”

28“My Lord and my God!” Thomas exclaimed.

29Then Jesus told him, “You believe because you have seen me. Blessed are those who believe without seeing me.”

Jesus says I am blessed!

Prayer:  Heavenly Father thank you for constantly pushing back against the tide of unbelief that seeks to push me beyond the tension of faith and doubt into the abyss of “No Trust.”  Please LORD, may your Spirit pour your love into my heart.  May your Spirit renew my mind and remind me of the promise of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  It’s in His name that I pray.  I love you! AMEN.

 

Faith in the age of “unless I see”

Scripture:  Read 1 Peter 1:3-5

3All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. It is by his great mercy that we have been born again, because God raised Jesus Christ from the dead. Now we live with great expectation, 4and we have a priceless inheritance—an inheritance that is kept in heaven for you, pure and undefiled, beyond the reach of change and decay. 5And through your faith, God is protecting you by his power until you receive this salvation, which is ready to be revealed on the last day for all to see.

Observation:  Peter writes to the church the reason for our praise and worship of God through Jesus Christ:  We have been born again — given new life-  through His mercy toward us.  Just as Jesus was raised again from the dead, we now have had a spiritual transformation from death to life.

This changes the way we live.  We live with great expectation.  We have hope.  We have the promises of God.  We are living looking forward to God’s triumph in the end and even now we can trust that in this life — we now belong to God.

Application:  What am I looking forward to?  What am I trusting God for in my life because of the change that Jesus is brining.  I recently met a person who said they had absolutely nothing to look forward to.  As a follower of Jesus part of our challenge is to let our faith in Christ pull us forward in each day with some kind of “Great Expectation.”  Where will I see God working in my life and the lives around me?  With whom will I get to share the life of Jesus?

Prayer:  Heavenly Father, thank you for the new life I have in Jesus.  You have been merciful to me.  Even as I know my life is secure in you and for eternity, help me by your grace to look forward today with expectation of seeing and meeting you.  I expect now that my life will honor you.  Thank you for this grace.  You give me meaning for life!  Thank you!  In Jesus name, AMEN.