Monday, October 29, 2012

1 Peter 4:8-11

And above all things have fervent charity among yourselves: for charity shall cover the multitude of sins. Use hospitality one to another without grudging. As every man hath received the gift, even so minister the same one to another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God. If any man speak, let him speak as the oracles of God; if any man minister, let him do it as of the ability which God giveth:  that God in all things may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom be praise and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.

As I read Scripture, Peter comes across as an “all-in” kinda guy. We see this when Jesus mentions that His disciples will fall away, and Peter emphatically says,  “Forget about all the other guys, I would die for you, Jesus.” In the garden, when the temple guards come to take Jesus into custody, Peter is the one who pulls a sword to protect Jesus. When Jesus comes walking on the water, it is Peter who literally goes overboard to walk on the water with Jesus. Based upon his enthusiasm in Scripture, I think if Peter were a modern day sports fan, he would be the shirtless guy with his chest, face and hair painted the colors of his team. He would have the foam finger, megaphone, and air-horn. He would be “that guy.” So, in verse 8, Peter tells his readers that “above all things,” they should have “fervent charity.” My mind goes straight to tackle football. Peter is admonishing his disciples to literally have “full-contact charity.” We don’t need any “two-hand-touch” charity. We need “body-parallel-to-the-ground”-tackle charity. He is telling us that we should be crazy about the way we love those around us for Christ. It isn’t good enough that we have kind thoughts. I think that Peter is telling us that as Christians we should be the most-intensely loving people that exist. Our very actions should be dripping with care and concern for the souls around us. Every opportunity we have to point people towards their greater satisfaction in Jesus should be leapt at. With the intensity of a cheek-painted, fourth quarter, linebacker we should be actively, constantly sweating and striving to love others, and to love them towards Jesus.
 Food For Thought: What phrase of intensity did Peter use today? In what ways can you do this in the following areas: home, school, work, sports, in the hood?