Working our way through the characteristics of 1 Peter 1:5-7, perseverance brings us to a place of adding in godliness. Getting to godliness sure takes some time! Why couldn’t we start here? It’s all in the mix from the start, I understand that, but it’s clear that there is a healthy progression that needs to take place in our lives to understand the full magnitude of these characteristics. Plus, each of these characteristics, Peter reminds us, needs to be increasing in our lives. We are called to keep climbing higher!
Godliness is reverence. It is about having piety toward God. In 1 Tim. 2:1,2 Paul calls on the readers to pray for those in authority. The prayer offered up seems offered in a very selfish way. We are to pray so that WE can live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. We may not like our leaders, but we are to PRAY for them. As we pray, regardless of their political parties, we are asking God’s blessings for them. In seeking out their good, we find peace in our own lives.
The goal of praying for our leaders is our own godliness. For all those who despised President Bush and his plans, how does that feel? Of course, now that he is out of office, we can easily say, “Hey, I prayed for the guy.”
For those who despise President Obama and his plans to “take American into socialism,” how does this set? It was easier praying for President Bush, wasn’t it?
My point is this: we all face hypocrisy in our lives over this issue. We let our political affiliations take over our emotions and lead our prayers. So… since that’s totally uncomfortable, let’s move along.
1 Tim. 4:7,8 — Paul admonishes us to get away from godless myths and old wives tales. We are to train ourselves in godliness. Move away from conspiracy theories. (The World Trade Center was blown up by our own government. President Obama is not a U.S. citizen.) Move into training.
Paul is HUGE into training metaphors. Athletic metaphors paint the picture. Our lives can be trained in piety. It means you shove out what doesn’t belong and you take in what is good for you spiritually. Our habits can change. Physical training has some value. Training for godliness has eternal value.
1 Tim. 6:6 — Godliness with contentment is great gain. We have powerful weapons available to us. Training in piety, we can find contentment. We don’t have to live in discontent like our culture wants us to live. We can be satisfied in God. He can direct what kind of phone we have, and what kind of computer we buy, and what kind of house we purchase. We can learn to live within his provision. Contentment.
Through our pursuit of God we can find rest. Contentment.
1 Tim. 6:11 — Paul gives a list of good things to pursue. To what am I giving my life? My life has a holy calling. Your life has a holy calling. The goal is high, attainable, and wonderful.