The book of 1 Peter has been described as a book that teaches Christians how to live as Christians. I agree with that assessment but I also believe it is a book that teaches submission. It teaches a life of willing submission to God’s will. A steadfast life that is unwavering from the path Jesus commanded us to walk. The straight and narrow path that Jesus himself spoke of in Matthew 7:13-14. In this devotional blog, I’ll explore the depths of our submission and hopefully clear up any confusion. For more information about the overall message of 1 Peter, please continue reading.
“As obedient children, not fashioning yourselves according to the former lusts in your ignorance: But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation; Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.”
Life of Submission to Christ
After Peter expresses his greetings and salutations, he immediately praises God for his grace and salvation. Consequently, salvation through Christ, our only hope. So, we are to submit to God by following the Word of God. Since Jesus Christ is also the Word of God in accordance with John 1:1 we are to obey Him. Also, since Jesus himself preexisted and obeyed the Old Testament, we can also conclude that Jesus is the entire Word of God from Genesis 1 to the last word of Revelation. Jesus is God and therefore we are called by God through Peter to live a life of submission to Christ.
Life of Submission to Holiness
As you can see from 1 Peter 1:14-16 above, we are also instructed to “Be ye holy; for I am holy.” But what does that mean? We’ll need a definition of what it is to be holy. So, according to Webster, Holy means “Properly, whole, entire or perfect, in a moral sense. Hallowed; consecrated or set apart to a sacred use, or to the service or worship of God.” So, we are to separate our selves from nonbelievers as it pertains to our morality. We are to submit to God’s morals and obey them in a life of submission to holiness. Thus, we are not supposed to live like those that are non-Christian or practice other religions. We cannot conform to other religious practices, political ideations or social changes. Because our life of submission to holiness must be a submission to Christ alone.
[Sidebar] The Persecution of Christians
The actual reason that true Christians are persecuted is that we will not submit to any authority that contradicts scripture or contradicts our submission to Christ. Christians in China are under siege for this reason. The Chinese government states that all people must submit to the State in all things. But Chinese Christians submit to God’s authority first and the State’s second. This is intolerable to their government. It’s the same for other religions. We will tolerate other religions, but we, as Christians, will not submit to them. Our religion requires us to put God and His laws first. Human governments, societies, social worldviews, and other religions are compelled to viciously persecute Christians because of that. So, the persecution will continue and escalate as morals decay, governments seek to rule our thoughts and actions, and false religions assert themselves.
Life of Submission to Authorities
This assertion that we, as Christians, must submit to the authority of our government may seem to contradict what I just spoke of. But, that’s not accurate. Christians are called to obey the people who govern them and also the laws they produce. But only the laws that don’t violate Biblical scripture. For example, A law that states a Christian doctor must perform euthanasia. The Bible says, “Thou shalt not kill.” Since euthanasia is the premeditated killing of a human. A Christian doctor would be required by God to disobey the government’s law. So, Christians are required by God to obey every law of their government except those rare laws that contradict Biblical scripture. Unfortunately, those rare laws are becoming less and less rare as society slips into depravity and lasciviousness. Consequently, laws are changed to conform to these corrupted, evil, sexually depraved, social ideations.
Life of Submission to Masters
Christians must submit to our bosses too. We are to do as instructed and to the best of our ability. Again, this does not include acts that contradict the Bible. For example: If your boss asks you to lie or you’ll lose your job. A Christian’s only recourse is to lose their job because lying contradicts scripture. Other than requests that go against God’s will, we must do our best to comply with our bosses wishes. Keeping in mind Colossians 3:23 that states, “And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men.” So, as we faithfully work for our boss, we are also working for the Lord. Because the Lord put that person in authority over us.
Young People Living a Life of Submission to Older People
Many young people understand this wisdom. Older people have knowledge and experiences that lead to wisdom. Younger people have lived shorter lives with less experience so they should obey the wisdom of their elders. Not blind obedience to their elders, but because God requires it and it makes logical sense. I have a granddaughter that actually said something similar to, “I don’t trust older people, because they don’t think the way I do.” Well, they don’t think the way you do because their older, wiser, and know better. That’s the point of God’s wisdom. He created everything and has existed always, so we should listen to His Word first. Not our own goofy thoughts, but His wise counsel found in Biblical scripture. Similarly, the young should listen to their much more experienced and wise elders.
Our Life of Submission
The book 1 Peter is a book that explains who Christians should submit to as we live our lives. So, our priorities are simple. We submit to God first, relying on the authority of the Holy Bible, God’s Holy Word. Then we submit to governmental authorities, bosses, and elders. In that order. As true Christians, there can also be no deviation from this truth. (Which is why we’re so persecuted.) The Bible is our only written authority and if anything fails to reconcile with the Bible, that “anything” must be rejected. So, our Life of Submission depends on our life of unwavering obedience to God. As He presented His instructions to us in the Holy Bible.