Resurrected Living
"What are you going to do with your new resurrected life? This is the heroic question." Richard Rohr

The Best of Times or The Worst of Times

When posed with those two choices I’m afraid many would choose the worst of times.  That may be a reasonable choice if you are not a Christian, although I’m not sure it would hold up when we compare our time to other times in history, nevertheless the argument could be made.  If one is a Christian and they take Christianity seriously, that is they place God above everything else, then I believe they must say that we live in the best of times.  A person who does not believe in God can say whatever they want about the times, and in doing so will perhaps come to a different conclusion than other non-believers depending on what one considers valuable.  Christians, however, must take into consideration the time in which we live and the One whom we serve.

1 Peter was written to Christians in the 1st century who were living in a time that was terrible for them.  The government was pagan.  Slavery was legal.  Christians were being persecuted.  Women were 2nd class citizens.  If the families of Peter’s readers were not Christians, then they probably disowned the family members who were.  It would seem as if those were terrible times for the people of God, but Peter views them as the best of times.  How is that possible?  Peter says it is because the prophets who searched and wanted to know the things that have now been revealed to us, and the angels who longed to look into what has been made manifest by the Holy Spirit (1 Pet. 1:10-12).  According to Peter we live in the best of times because of where we live in relation to Jesus Christ and the salvation he made available to all.

As Christians we must also remember that we serve God who has power and control over all earthly authorities.  As is well documented from the Old Testament God works through both good and bad leaders.  God’s will will be accomplished no matter who is in charge.  As Christians we must decide who we will trust.  Will we put our trust in a government or party and then be upset when things do not go as planned, or will we put our trust in Almighty God?  We must look beyond the temporal things, which will not last, and look to the One who gives eternal life.  This takes faith, because we naturally want to believe in what we can control.  Even though we may not like what is going on in government we believe it can be better and we can do something about it, when in reality governments have been corrupt long before the time of Christ.  Our trust and our hope should not lie in something as unpredictable and temporal as a government.  Our trust and hope needs to be anchored in something much bigger.

Why do we live in the best of times?  Because we serve the supreme ruler and authority of the universe and we have salvation in Jesus Christ.  Many people are distraught about this or that.  They are up one day and down another, but Christians should be different.  Every day is a good day because of who we serve and because of where we stand in relation to Jesus Christ.  If we will do this, then people will notice something different about us and we should be ready to give them an answer.  If someone is without the hope we have we should be ready to take their hand and lead the way.

“Always be ready to give an answer to anyone who demands from you an accounting for the hope that is in you.” 1 Pet. 3:15

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