While delivering a well-publicized speech, a respected leader and statesman got the attention of his nation by declaring that most of his country’s honorable Members of Parliament (MPs) were quite dishonorable. Citing lifestyles of corruption, pompous attitudes, unsavory language, and other vices, he rebuked the MPs and urged them to reform. As expected, his comments didn’t go well with them and they dispatched counter-criticisms his way.
We may not be public officials in positions of leadership, but we who follow Christ are a “chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession” (1 Peter 2:9). As such, our Lord calls us to lifestyles that honor Him.
The disciple Peter had some practical advice on how to do this. He urged us to “abstain from sinful desires, which wage war against your soul” (v. 11). Although he didn’t use the word honorable, he was calling us to behavior worthy of Christ.
As the apostle Paul phrased it in his letter to the Philippians, “Whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things” (Phil. 4:8). Indeed, these are the characteristics of behavior that honor our Lord.
Lord, when we are honest with You, we understand how often we fall far short of honorable behavior. We know how much we need You. By Your Spirit, help us replace any selfish thoughts, words, and actions with things that please You and draw others to You.
We honor God’s name when we call Him our Father and live like His children.
The apostle Peter wrote this letter to encourage Jewish and Gentile Christians in Asia Minor (modern Turkey) who were going through severe trials and suffering because of their faith in Jesus. Peter says that for the Christian, trials and suffering are inevitable and to be expected (1 Peter 4:12), although often unreasonable, unjust, and inexplicable (2:19–20). But these difficulties can be valuable to the believer and therefore glorifying to God (1:6–7). Although they are universal, they are certainly temporal (5:9–10). Peter calls us to rejoice in our trials because we participate not only in Christ’s suffering but also in His glory (1:7; 4:13).