Aritcle #3 in April Kyle’s series on 1 Peter.
Thoughts on 1 Peter…
“…not with perishable things…”
The milk in my fridge has an expiration date. The loaf of bread in my pantry has an expiration date. Even the bag of tortilla chips that I must purchase with the necessary jar of salsa has an expiration date. These things are perishable. They’re going to go bad. They’re going to grow moldy or stale or clumpy or…well, you get the picture. And quite frankly, that is not shocking to me…these things will not last forever. They will – and are – perishing. Heavens knows if some of them will not perish by the end of the week.
Think of the things in your house that are fading and perishing. Books on the shelf with covers faded and pages torn. Photographs of little people who are now taller and hardly recognizable; or photographs of loved ones who have passed on. Old t-shirts and ripped jeans; faded wood flooring striped by sunshine pouring in through the window. Even looking in the mirror, there’s a whole lot of perishing going on there…! All these things we live in and around from day-to-day. Our stuff is fading. Expiring. Perishing. And yet, truth be told, this is not too shocking really. We know our stuff is getting old.
In contrast, I checked the inside of my gold wedding band and it does not have an expiration date. There’s no timeframe of when I should expect it to crumble off my finger. I don’t anticipate the perishing of my gold wedding ring or the perishing of the diamond sitting so sparkly on my left ring finger. I think of these things lasting forever…as I fully anticipate my marriage doing, but that’s a sermon for another day. I would be all-together shocked and very upset if my diamond stud earrings were to somehow dissolve or disintegrate. They’re made of gold! The real stuff…in my earthly vernacular. I do not think of my gold jewelry as perishable!
Good o’ Peter sets me straight however. He uses this word perishable to describe the silver and gold of this world. He sets my perspective aright. He says my inheritance was not purchased with the perishable stuff like silver and gold. He says my living hope was not established by the acquisition of mere silver and gold. He says my sanctification is not achieved by the trading of cheap metal like silver and gold. He says that what I have in Christ is not going to perish – not like bread and milk – but it’s not going to perish like silver and gold perishes.
Somebody better shout Glory! Amen.
The Word of God has a way of setting our priorities straight, does it not? So often, I’m caught up in my perishable stuff. I lose sight of the imperishable things of Almighty Eternal Creator God that are a part of what makes me His royal kid. I forget that this earthly home is fading, expiring, crumbling. That it is in reality perishing.
Peter tells us the inheritance that belongs to the child of God is imperishable and is being kept in the un-expiring all-glorious ever-preserved Heaven. This non-perishable item was purchased by the raised-back-to-life-pouring-out-mercy Son of God, Jesus Christ.
Peter says that I no longer exist in an “empty way of life” but that I have a new way of living that was redeemed with non-perishable items. And again he compares this to “things like silver and gold.” I mean, Peter, what could possibly be more imperishable, more non-perishable than silver and gold…??? Peter, I have to question your knowledge here! Silver and gold. That’s the good stuff.
Peter says that I have been born again of imperishable seed. The life I now live is no longer perishable. He even says my faith, my character is being refined into imperish-ibility!!! (yes, I made up that word…) I no longer live in a fading, expiring, crumbling existence. I’m called to, established into a non-perishable, imperishable life.
This world can get my attention off these truths. This earth is so…crumbly.
The gold of my ring – hardly 19 years old – is already scratched and bent. It will fade away one day. The milk in my fridge needs to be dumped out.
But my inheritance, not expiring.
The living hope I live in, not fading.
The faith I hold is being made more valuable.
My eternal home has no cracks in the walls.
The fountain from which I drink deeply will never run dry…or sour.
The position I hold is imperishable.