Friday, May 11, 2007

The Family Likeness

I have a confession to make. I don't like family functions very much. Well, not all the time, but more whenever you see family you haven't seen in a while. They insist on making the usual comments about - oh, you would know you were your mother's son. Seemingly I look quite like mum. I can't see it myself. And I'm not entirely chuffed about it either!

But it got me thinking. It seems to me that Peter calls for the development of a 'family likeness' when he writes his first epistle. Let's see what he said:

As obedient children, do not be conformed to the passions of your former ignorance, but as he who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, since it is written, "You shall be holy, for I am holy."' (1 Peter 1:14-16)

In verse 17 he again mentions calling on him as Father, making sure the family references are clear. The motivation for our holiness is because our Father is holy - and we are to be like Jesus. Note that Peter isn't saying that the way to be saved is to be holy, because we can't possibly be holy on our own efforts or merits - he deals with his we're saved quite a lot in his letter, and especially in the three 'cross scenes' (1:19-21; 2:21-25; 3:18-22).

No, rather, because we're saved, we are called to be holy 'in all your conduct'. As the Holy Spirit works in us, transforming us, we change and become more like Jesus. But what does it mean to be holy in all we do? How would our use of time change? What about the use of our money? How we treated those around us? What we read and watched on tv?

Father, you are holy, just as the angels sing around your throne: 'Holy, Holy, Holy is the Lord God Almighty'. Change me by the power of your Spirit, and make me holy. In Jesus name. Amen.

1 comment :

  1. Amen. His spirit is with you for sure.

    I am finding out more every day that His quest to make me holy is an adventure that pushes the very boundaries of human existence. He forever will challenge us to change those human habits (money, politics, business,...) so that they reflect His love more everyday. Your words are a great encouragement to me and I will visit again. I wish you a great day filled with His love.