Considering Commitment in Hard Times - 1 Peter 4: 1
July 18, 2023, 8:00 AM

“Therefore, since Christ suffered in his body, arm yourselves also with the same attitude, because he who has suffered in his body is done with sin.”

When I am going through tough times, I certainly do more thinking about my life and what might be wrong with it. Interestingly, suffering causes us to review our priorities:

Peter is reviewing a thought he had given before. Hard times implied in this context is when the desire to live for Jesus Christ runs in conflict with the world and specifically the problems we face with decisions to live by a different value. When we say no to sin and not fitting in with others, it can mean a job loss, or family problems, or lawsuits, or hatred, or ostracism.

The attitude of Jesus is to do what is right anyway and appeal to God. Faith is knowing we are on the winning team and this world only gives light and momentary affliction compared to eternity. In His time God will bring about good, but from the world’s view it may not seem like it.

In our country it is not hard to be a Christian. Not like it is in most of the world.  I am thankful that we do not have to meet in secret or worry about our families killing us when we turn to Jesus. I am grateful I can write openly devotions and preach Biblical convictions.

The hard thing for most of our youth is the temptation to want Jesus and friends. It is easy to cheat, lie, smoke, drink, curse, do drugs, or have sex when everyone around them seems to be doing it. Then they can go to church and youth group and talk about Jesus. But down deep, if they are saved, the Holy Spirit gnaws at their conscience and they know they are living a lie. 

But many adults have also fallen into the worldview of materialism, business practices, political commitments, or social relationships that can result in compromise with seeking to live for God’s glory.

One church attendee shared how doing a good job at work caused other workers around him to ridicule him for making them look bad. They thought management would expect more out of them if this man produced more work in the same amount of time. He would get promotions they felt they deserved because some of them had worked there longer. To fit in he was pressured to do less than his best. What was he to do?

Have the same attitude as Jesus. Arm yourselves knowing that if you live for the Lord, you will experience various degrees of rejection, loneliness, and persecution, but do right anyway as this is pleasing unto the Lord.

Application: We do not live in judgment or superiority to others, but in humility to let Christ be seen in us in love and in faithfulness first to Him. What would Jesus do if He were in your situation?

Prayer: Thank you, Jesus, that for the joy set before You, You endured the cross scorning it’s shame and sat down at the right hand of God and are forever interceding for each of us.