Measuring Stick

1 Peter 1:7: “These have come so that your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may be proved genuine and may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed” (NIV).

Observation: Peter is encouraging us to keep our focus heavenward. He said we have much for which to rejoice (1 Pet. 1:3—5, NIV) even though all kinds of trials may come for a season (v. 6). It is these very trials, through their winnowing refinements, that assure praise, glory, and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed.

Application: What does Peter mean about being assured of praise, glory, and honor when Christ is revealed? Is it seemly that we ought to hope for praise, honor, and glory? Are we as Christians not called to meekness? Rather than hoping for acclaim are we not instead admonished to walk in a spirit of humility? What Peter says seems to go against the grain of a great deal of teaching.

If the sense of this passage seems a bit jarring, it may be due to our struggle against flesh’s satisfactions. That’s the very struggle that Peter here called “all kind of trials.” Such trials have not only such outward manifestations as poverty or illness, but also reflect an inner battle as we must honestly confess that desire for worldly acclaim has not yet been fully wrung from us.

Peter speaks of praise, honor, and glory as something to be sought, acclaim, which comes from heaven itself. Paul wrote of it in Romans 2:7, “To those who by persistence in doing good seek glory, honor and immortality, He will give eternal life.” And in verse 10, “but glory, honor and peace for everyone who does good . . .” (NIV).

Think of it! In response to my wholehearted pursuit of Him, heaven rejoices. Jesus Himself addressed this when He described the future day when He would return in all His glory, accompanied by hosts of angels, to sit on His throne in heavenly glory (Matthew 25:31). He will then “say to those on His right, ‘Come, you who are blessed of my father; take your inheritance’” (verse 34, NIV).

Could there be a more wondrous benediction over my life than for the Son to call me blessed of His father? Honestly? How often do I reflect on those future words? How consciously do I pursue His inheritance as compared to my toil for earthly treasure? I must consider this: my investment of time and money exactly reflect my true longing for praise, glory, and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed.

Prayer: Thank You, Lord, for such a clear measuring stick of my heart’s fervor for You: how my time and treasure are spent. Cause me to spend them in wholehearted pursuit of You.

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