But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness and into his wonderful light. Once you were not a people, but now you are the people of God; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy. Dear friends, I urge you, as foreigners and exiles, to abstain from sinful desires, which war against your soul. Live such good lives among the pagans that, though they accuse you of doing wrong, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day he visits us. 1 Peter 2:9-12
I am chosen by God, a princess of the Most High King! That is a serious statement. I don’t think I truly value that statement:”I am Yours, Father!” Once all alone, and God has chosen to call me His own!
Psalm 146 says, “He is the maker of Heaven and Earth, the sea, and everything in them—he remains faithful forever. He upholds the cause of the oppressed and gives food to the hungry. The Lord sets prisoners free, the Lord gives sight to the blind, the Lord lifts up those who are bowed down, the Lord loves the righteous. The Lord watches over the foreigner and sustains the fatherless of the widow (vs. 6-9).”
God not only calls me His own, but He has done such a mighty work in my life that anything else that happens here on Earth fails in comparison. While I was still an enemy of God, God sent His precious son Jesus to die on the cross for my sins. Though Jesus’ Resurrection, I too may life—not only eternal life, but a much better life! I can live a life better than anything I have ever imagined. I can resist the urge to sin—not in my own strength, but in His. I can avoid going down a bad road that I might have willfully gone down, because of Christ and God’s work in me! I am no longer under sin’s grip. I can have such victory through Christ, and Him alone! God’s Word, the Bible, teaches me of the victorious life that I can have.
According to 1 Peter 2:11, the foreigner is you and me. We are foreigners in this world. What power there is…to know that He takes care of us. The Lord watches over us, and sustains us in whatever circumstance we are in. God’s heart is jealous for us, because of His great love for us. He calls us His own! We were bought at a price. Let’s yield ourselves to Him! In Romans, Paul pleads with us to give our bodies as a living sacrifice to God, in light of God’s great mercies. His mercies are made new each day, and He never gives up on us. He is worthy of our best, our all! Part of the ways we yield and give our bodies to God is through purity. It is not just saving ourselves for marriage. It is so much more than that.
Peter urges us to abstain from sinful desires. He shares the truth of it: these sinful desires wage war against our very souls. We wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against spiritual forces—we wrestle against our flesh, the devil, this world, etc. We need to be on guard, so that we may pray as Peter says in 1 Peter 4:7.
Remember, God calls us His own:
“”What agreement is there between the temple of God and idols? For we are the temple of the living God. As God has said: “I will live with them and walk among them, and I will be their God, and they will be my people.” Therefore, “Come out from them and be separate, says the Lord. Touch no unclean thing, and I will receive you.” And, “I will be a Father to you, and you will be my sons and daughters, says the Lord Almighty.” Therefore, since we have these promises, dear friends, let us purify ourselves from everything that contaminates body and spirit, perfecting holiness out of reverence for God.” (2 Corinthians 6:16-7:1)
Because God calls us His own, let us abstain… Let us come with repentant hearts, to ask for forgiveness for all the wickedness we have done. Let us seek forgiveness for our actions, thoughts, and words. Knowing God can cleanse us and set us on a new, firm path. Our foundation is not on the impurities, but our foundation is an unshakable foundation—Jesus Christ, He is our foundation!