Monday, May 19, 2014

The Word Remains Forever: Day 19

1 Peter 2:18-20 Servants, be subject to your masters with all respect, not only to the good and gentle but also to the unjust. For this is a gracious thing, when, mindful of God, one endures sorrows while suffering unjustly. For what credit is it if, when you sin and are beaten for it, you endure? But if when you do good and suffer for it you endure, this is a gracious thing in the sight of God.
Though we are sojourners in this world (I Peter 2:11), we are still called by God to work as His agents for the good of His creation (Matt. 5:12-16). Each relationship we have is a calling given to us by God to show His love and mercy to our fellow creatures. In our reading today, Peter speaks about the relationship we have with our employers.

In those days, you were either a master or a servant. It would be the modern day equivalent to a boss and an employee. Peter is teaching us today to be subject to our employers, superiors, or bosses out of respect for them and in order to bring honor to God’s name. God gives you your daily bread through your employer, and because God works through that person, you are to show them honor.

But this is not always easy, is it? Especially when we work for some pretty sinful people. Do we still need to show respect of those who don’t deserve it? Yes, but for the sake of God, not theirs. Are we just to be doormats that get walked all over? No, Peter says, but you who are free in Christ need not seek retaliation. Leave justice to God, for He will not allow your patient suffering to go unnoticed (Matt. 5:11-12). In fact, the promise of the resurrection is that God will one day make all injustice right. Your injustices have been forgiven by Christ. Pray your harsh boss’s will be too. But stand firm, and may your patient endurance drive others to praise your Father in heaven (Matt. 5:16).

Father, grant me patience to endure injustice. Grant me confidence to defend those who suffer unjustly. And grant me faith to trust you to make things right through your Son Jesus Christ. 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. *

Pastor Bob


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