By Michael Youssef, Ph D. 07/30/20
As God’s people, our conduct must be consistent with our transformed identity.
Read 1 Peter 4:7-11. Peter begins this passage by reminding us that a true believer’s conduct is motivated by the fact that the Lord is near. We are motivated to live godly lives by Christ’s presence now, with deep gratitude for His saving work (see Romans 12:1)—and by the promise of His imminent return, joyfully anticipating the hope of glory (see Galatians 5:5). Peter then identifies four ways that a believer’s conduct is transformed by the love and hope of Christ.
First, as we pursue godliness, we find that prayer is a delight, not a duty. As you focus on the Gospel and the promise of heaven, you will want to express gratitude and thanksgiving to God—He has literally snatched you out of the jaws of death! Prayer will become time spent with the one you love most and whose purpose you trust and obey.
Second, as we grow in Christlikeness, love is second nature, not a chore. Jesus said, “My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you” (John 15:12). Just as we receive forgiveness from God when we confess, we must also forgive those who wrong us.
Third, when we follow Christ, hospitality is a joy, not a job. Hospitality is one of the highest expressions of Christian love. It is the attitude of unselfishness. As Christ sacrificed His life for us, we are called to sacrifice for others without grumbling or complaining.
Fourth, when you keep in step with the Spirit, using your spiritual gift is natural, not forced. When you first came to Christ, the Holy Spirit gave you a gift. It could be the gift of teaching, the gift of faith, or perhaps the gift of giving. Whatever it is, the Holy Spirit has given it to you so that you might glorify God.
If you are not living in light of what Christ has done for you, then perhaps you have not fully grasped your transformed identity in Him. Today, ask for the Holy Spirit to fill you so you can lift Christ high and glorify Him with your life.
Prayer: Jesus, thank You for what You have done, are doing, and will do for me. May my life proclaim the magnificence of Your grace. I want to glorify You with my conduct by the power of Your Spirit. I pray in the name of Jesus. Amen.
“Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins” (1 Peter 4:8).