Tired of Chaos? Get Some Peace!
By: Rev. Joe Kramer
(1) Simon Peter, a servant and apostle of Jesus Christ,
To those who through the righteousness of our God and Savior Jesus Christ have received a faith as precious as ours:
(2) Grace and peace be yours in abundance through the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord.
-1 Peter 1:1-2 (NIV 1984)
These first two verses show us how we can obtain and live in true peace. If you put this into practice I promise you, you will experience peace.
A lot of people tend to gloss over the opening of books of scripture. However, the opening of this book sets our expectations in just two verses.
Peter opens up with his proper name followed by what Christ called him (i.e. Peter). His given name is Simon, but Christ called him Peter. Peter is “Petros” in Greek and it means large rock. That being said, Jesus regularly spoke Aramaic, not Greek or Hebrew. The term used by Jesus was probably “Cephas” in Aramaic, which means the same thing.
Why is this important? Because Jesus asked him who he thought He was. Jesus answered with the following, “Simon Peter answered him, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life.” (John 6:68, NIV 1984). At this point Jesus named him “Peter” because of this rock of the revelation of who Jesus is, the church was/is built.
Peter now tells us for whom this letter is sent. He states it is sent to those who have a like faith; who have received Christ as their personal Lord and Savior. He says this is a precious faith. This gives the connotation of someone who holds their faith “close to the chest.” I always think of an image of a mother who would protect their child close to her chest in times of terrible danger. A mom will not let go of their child for any reason. This mom will give their life for their child. If we hold the revelation of Christ like this, then we are truly one of God’s children. This is the faith that we are supposed to have, to give our lives for the love that we hold in our hearts for Jesus Christ.
In verse two Peter gives us a great opening. He conveys grace and peace to the readers in abundance through their knowledge of God and Jesus. Grace refers to our standing before God. It reminds us that through Grace are we saved and that is not of ourselves, but is the gift of God (c.f. Ephesians 2:8). Because of what Christ has done Grace comes before peace. We can only obtain peace with God, and with each other, because of the Grace that comes from Christ that has been conveyed to us through the sacrifice of Jesus Christ.
Due to the revelation of Christ, we can increase in our knowledge of God and Jesus. Now in the Greek text (which is what this book is written) the term translated knowledge carries with it the connotation of an experiential knowledge. Through God’s grace and peace we can experience Him because of what He has done for us through Jesus Christ.
How about you today? Are you tired of being in Chaos? Maybe you need to start a relationship with Jesus Christ. If you are a Christian, maybe you should spend some time in prayer and study and getting to know God. Because of what He has done you have this ability. The Choice is Yours.