Father, please teach me and help me to apply what I can learn from this and I thank You in Jesus' Name. Amen.
"For you spent enough time in the past doing what the gentiles like to do, living in sensuality, sinful desires, drunkenness, wild celebrations, drinking parties, and detestable idolatry." ~ 1 Peter 4:3 (ISV)
Peter lists some things we as Christians have to struggle with and sometimes God will fully deliver us from these things and sometimes God will allow us to struggle against sin for a while then change our hearts. Endurance is being built through this. Endurance is the ability to keep going even when you desire to give up. You can’t run a race (live as a Christian) without TRAINED endurance from God. God uses various things to produce endurance in the life of a Christian; some trials, some temptations, etc. etc.
Paul compared the Christian life to a race. “Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? So run, that ye may obtain.” (1 Corinthians 9:24 KJV) Paul was a teacher that used his surroundings as a lesson, similar to Jesus. Jesus often used what He saw to teach, “birds of the air (Matthew 13:32), foxes have holes (Matthew 13:32), sowing seeds (Mark 4:3).”
In the New Living Translation it states: “When we walked in lasciviousness, lusts, excess of wine, revellings, banquetings, and abominable idolatries” (1 Peter 4:3 NLT)
The Good News Bible makes it clearer without even having to break it down and explain it further: “You have spent enough time in the past doing what the heathen like to do. Your lives were spent in indecency, lust, drunkenness, orgies, drinking parties, and the disgusting worship of idols.” (1 Peter 4:3 GNB)
Side Note: “Idols” can be cars, clothes, books, whatever we put ABOVE God and His Word, ways and will. Also, it’s great to use various translations of the Bible when you study (King James Version, New Living Translation, AMPLIFIED, Good News Bible, etc). I suggest getting E-Sword @ E-Sword.net. It supplies you with free various commentaries, dictionaries, Bible translations, etc; for free. It’s for a computer or you can get it for your iPad’s. It is a GREAT TOOL for Bible Study; HIGHLY recommended.
The first thing we need to notice is that we ALL have done this. So nobody should have their heads lifted above anyone still doing it (Galatians 6:1). We have all fallen short of Gods Will and standard (Romans 3:23) and in the process of this we were only brought back to God by Jesus’ death on the Cross and our faith in His resurrection (Romans 5:1). We are saved by GRACE through FAITH and NOT works (Ephesians 2:8-9)
But look what Paul told Timothy who was a younger person who was walking with Jesus. Paul knew that it was “easier” for a younger Christian to either fall into these things or start again or continue to do them.
“But you, Timothy, are a man of God; so run from all these evil things. Pursue righteousness and a godly life, along with faith, love, perseverance, and gentleness. Fight the good fight for the true faith. Hold tightly to the eternal life to which God has called you, which you have confessed so well before many witnesses.” (1 Timothy 6:11 NLT)
“Man of God, keep eternity's values in view. Lay hold on eternal life. Keep focused on the fact that you're going to heaven.” ~ Jon Courson’s New Testament Application Commentary
Paul went further into what we should RUN (quicker, faster) for as Peter has just listed what we WALKED (went slow, lasted longer) in. Notice the need to run for Jesus and His presence instead of slowly going into sin and staying in the presence of it.
“Paul uses active and forceful verbs to describe the Christian life: run, pursue, fight, hold tightly. Some think Christianity is a passive religion that advocates waiting for God to act. On the contrary, we must have an active faith, training, working hard, sacrificing, and doing what we know is right. Is it time for action on your part? Christian service, like athletics, requires training and sacrifice. Our discipline and obedience largely define whether or not we will be contributors or merely spectators. How would other believers rank your contributing role on Christ's team?” ~ Life Application Study Bible
As you develop and grow (through studying the Bible, giving, praying, etc.) in your Christian walk you will have this same mind-set. “You won't spend the rest of your lives chasing your own desires, but you will be anxious to do the will of God.” (1 Peter 4:2)
Now Peter gives us the purpose: “it’s time to be done with it for good.” Fight sin and pursue Christ.
“You've already put in your time in that God-ignorant way of life, partying night after night, a drunken and profligate life. Now it's time to be done with it for good.” (1 Peter 4:3 The Message)
Father in Jesus Name I thank You for prayer and the change it can bring. Lord, change our hearts and cause us to want the will of God. Loose us from the things of the flesh and those things that hinder our walk with You in Jesus Name. Amen.
WANT TO ACCEPT JESUS CHRIST AS YOUR SAVIOR FROM YOUR SINS? CLICK “HOW TO KNOW JESUS”
“Behold, now is the day of salvation.” ~ 2 Corinthians 6:2 (King James Version)
Remember, you do NOT have to be perfect or “get your life together” to accept Jesus as your Savior from your sin. He loves you just like you are! (Romans 5:8)
“I will never turn away anyone who comes to me.” ~ Jesus (John 6:37 GNB)
“The Spirit and the bride say, "Come!" Everyone who hears this should say, "Come!" If you are thirsty, come! If you want life-giving water, come and take it. It's free!” ~ Revelation 22:17 (Contemporary English Version)
BIBLE STUDY TOOLS GUARANTEED TO BLESS YOUR LIFE:
If you have a computer you can download a GREAT Bible study tool called “E-Sword” found at www.E-Sword.net (also for iPad’s). If you download this, you can also download many free Bible commentaries (helping to explain scriptures to you), dictionaries and Bible versions. If you desire to buy certain commentaries, devotionals and dictionaries as additions to the abundance of the ones they already have you can at www.estudysource.com
www.ChristianBook.com (Order a Study Bible) Life Application Study Bible
- KJV Study Bible
- MacArthur Study Bible
- The Jeremiah Study Bible
- The Word for Today Bible available @ (twft.org)
Some Commentaries (Matthew Henry’s, J. Vernon McGee, or Bible Believers Commentary), Naves Topical Bible (Free on E-Sword), Bible dictionaries (Holman); etc.) or www.Amazon.com (And grab a highlighter)
Great books to buy: • “Disciplines of the Holy Spirit” Dr. Tann/Gregg
• “How to Listen to God” ~ Dr. Charles Stanley
• “How to Reach Your Full Potential for God” ~ Dr. Charles Stanley (www.InTouch.org)
• “How to Study the Bible” ~ Dr. Charles Stanley
• “Living Waters” ~ Chuck Smith (www.twft.org)
• “Success God's Way: Achieving True Contentment And Purpose” ~ Dr. Charles Stanley
• “When the Storm Hits” ~ Chuck Smith
• “Married. Happily.” ~ Greg Laurie
• “FAITH” ~ Chuck Smith
• “EMOTIONS” ~ Charles Stanley
GREAT BIBLE TEACHERS WITH FREE BIBLE STUDIES ONLINE:
Pastor Chuck Smith [Check out his library on the site] www.twft.org
Dr. Charles Stanley of In-touch Ministries www.intouch.org
Greg Laurie of Harvest Ministries www.harvest.org
Bishop T.D Jakes of The Potters House www.thepottershouse.org
Dr. J. Vernon McGee www.ttb.com
Dr. David Jeremiah www.davidjeremiah.org
"Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth." ~ 2 Timothy 2:15 (King James Version)