Summary of passage: Peter tells us that Christ suffered in this body so we should be prepared to suffer as well since it means we will be done with sin, resulting in living for the will of God and not for this earthly life. You spent time doing pagan things and now they abuse you. But they will be judged in the end.
Be clear-minded and self-controlled so that you can pray. Love each other deeply. Offer hospitality to one another without grumbling. Use your gifts to serve others. If you speak, speak the words of God. Serve through God’s strength so that He may be praised.
Rejoice in your suffering since you are participating in the sufferings of Christ. If you are insulted because of Christ, you are blessed. Praise God that you bear His name in your suffering. Commit yourselves to God and do good.
8 ) Personal Question. My answer: Again, I hate to harp on this but BSF keeps asking: I haven’t suffered physically at all. No one has beaten me, flogged me, ostracized me, or condemned me, especially based on my beliefs (probably afraid they’d get sued if they did). That being said, I have experienced God’s tests and how He takes away when we went through bankruptcy and we lost everything. In this instance, I realized material things are just that. There’s always another house or car. But what matters is family and God. If I have both, then I’m good.
9) Pagans will have to give account for their actions and behavior (as we all do) because God judges both the living (those with the Holy Spirit) and the dead (those without the Holy Spirit).
10a) Speaking the very words of God
b) It is possible because Christ did so and if Christ did so, then we (with the power of the Holy Spirit) can do so as well.
2 Peter 1:3: ”His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness.” He has given us everything we need in order to do so.
c) Love is also an act of will. This is what many couples do not understand and what leads to divorce. Love isn’t a feeling (and definitely not the one of first love). You choose to love your husband even when….(fill in the blank). It’s the same with others. You choose to love others even when….(they fall, they sin, they hurt you, they are imperfect as we all are, etc). Christ loved all. We must love all. We must override our feelings and choose to do so.
11) You will be rewarded when his glory is revealed, you are blessed with the Spirit of glory and God upon you, you suffer in His name.
12) To pave the way for Christ’s return by purifying them and giving them time to be refined like silver and tested like gold.
13) Personal Question. My answer: Perseverance. Patience. Faith and trust in Him.
Conclusions: I almost choked on verse 8. Love? Seriously? Come on, Peter. We get it. But I liked BSF’s take on it so I did get something out of it after all, pointing out how we must choose to love and not love by feeling. If we relied just on emotion, no one would love anyone.
My favorite (if you haven’t guessed) was verse 10. Yes, another repetition of Paul’s but one I need to hear constantly in order to keep the faith in my novel. I have been gifted to serve others and I must follow through on that gift. That is the hard part when every day I ask myself, “Is this worth it?”
I like the idea of being purified for I tend to think of myself as pyrite instead of gold. Good stuff!