Monday, April 28, 2014

The Word Remains Forever: Day 1

1 Peter 1:1a Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ…

A few weeks ago we had a rather large earthquake here in Southern California. Apparently we had been in an earthquake “drought,” so when this quake hit, people got nervous. Did this mean we should be ready for more big shakers? Was this a prelude to the Big One? What does this earthquake mean? To get an explanation of what we should do now, a press conference was held with the seismologists. They couldn’t give any predictions on what this quake might mean (it was comical how many times they said that). However, this quake was a reminder that we should always be ready for the next one. They used the press conference to show us how to live in preparation for the next one, whenever that may be.

On Easter morning there was an earthquake, and Jesus walked out of the tomb! After his resurrection, he appeared to over 500 people (I Corinthians 15:6). As St. Paul tells us here, he specifically appeared to Peter, and then to the other apostles (I Corinthians 15:5). He gave them the commission to go out and explain what this resurrection meant for God’s creation. The apostles were sent out to hold press conferences to speak the good news! He told them to not only explain that Christ had risen to begin the work of the new creation, but to proclaim repentance and forgiveness of sins in Jesus’ name (Luke 24:47). In a personal conversation, Jesus specifically told Peter, “Feed my sheep” (John 21:17).

In the book of I Peter, we receive part of the apostle’s fulfillment of Christ’s commission. Here is his Holy Spirit inspired press release which teaches us how we are to live in light of the great Easter earthquake. Here in this book, the Spirit will see to it that we, the sheep of our Good Shepherd, are fed and nourished. As Christ’s sheep let us join together to read, study, and pray through Peter’s first letter for the strengthening of our faith!

Merciful Father, after the resurrection of your Son, He graciously sent out His apostles to teach us of your grace and favor. Forgive me for the times I ignore your Word because I think I am too busy or because I am too lazy. I thank you that you have given your Word to me in Holy Scripture so I can know your will and your love for me and all the church. Guide me ever more deeply into your Scriptures so that my faith and love toward you would grow ever stronger. In Jesus’ name I pray. AMEN!

*The symbol on the top of this devotional stands for “Verbum Domini Manet in Aeternum.” It is a Latin phrase which means “The Word of the Lord endures forever.” This phrase, based on I Peter 1:24-25, served as the battle cry of the Lutheran reformers as it reminded them that God’s Word alone was sufficient to teach them God’s will. The symbol was on flags, banners, uniforms, and even swords as a sign of unity among those who suffered for confessing their faith in Christ alone. *


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