“Christians Are To Live “As”
The book of First Peter addresses the life that must be lived by those that have a “lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.” (I Peter 1:3) Christians are those that have been cleansed by the precious blood of Jesus, and now they must stay clean and holy in their manner of living. Peter said, “Knowing that you were not redeemed with corruptible things, like silver or gold, from your aimless conduct received by tradition from your fathers, but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot.” Christians are to walk both in hope and in holiness. Peter used the little word “as” to picture the manner of life of the Christian.
Christians are to live “as” obedient children. Peter said Christians are to live, “as obedient children, not conforming yourselves to the former lusts, as in your ignorance.” (I Peter 1:14) Christians are to live as children of obedience to God. Our daily conduct must be like that of obedient children. We must never allow ourselves to be controlled by our former desires. Christians know the requirements of the gospel. Therefore they should fashion themselves after God, their heavenly Father, who is holy. Christians must live godly lives “as” obedient children of God.
Christians are to live holy “as” God is holy.
“But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation.” (I Peter 1:15) We must always live as God's holy people because God is the one that chose us, and He is holy. God is glorious in holiness, and He is the source and fountain of holiness in others. In the book of Exodus God is described in these powerful words, “Who is like unto thee, O LORD, among the gods? who is like thee, glorious in holiness, fearful in praises, doing wonders?” (Exodus 15:11) “As” God is holy so Christians must likewise be holy.
Christians are to live with a desire for God's word “as” a baby desires milk. Christians must, “As newborn babes, desire the pure milk of the word that you may grow thereby.” (I Peter 2:2) The Gospel is not only the means of helping a person that is consumed by sin; it even makes alive those that are dead in sin. “But the word of the Lord endureth for ever. And this is the word which by the gospel is preached unto you.” (I Peter 1:25) When obeyed, the word of God gives both meaning and joy to life. As the baby craves milk, Christians must crave the word of God. God's word is nourishment for our soul. Do you have an appetite for God's word “as” a baby has for milk?
Christians are to live “as” lively stones in God's spiritual temple. “Ye also, as lively stones, are built up a spiritual house, an holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by Jesus Christ.” (I Peter 2:5) Christians are “as” lively stones that are being used to build a spiritual house. With the help of Jesus Christ these lively stones will offer sacrifices that please God. These lively stones have been hewn out of the quarry of the world and made fit for this spiritual building by the blood of Jesus. As stones their faith and love are to be lasting and durable. It is because of the spiritual life that Christians obtain from Jesus that we are called “lively stones.” Are you living “as” a lively stone in God's spiritual house?
Christians are to live "as" sojourners and pilgrims. Christians are strangers in this world, just passing through. “Beloved, I beg you as sojourners and pilgrims abstain from fleshly lusts which war against the soul.” (I Peter 2:11) As Christians, our condition in the world is that of being strangers and pilgrims. We must not impede our spiritual growth and progress by giving in to the wickedness and lusts of the country through which we are passing. Our citizenship is in heaven. (Philippians 3:20) Christians are in this world only as sojourners. Let us not become too attached.
Christians are to live “as” free and yet “as” slaves. Christians are free people that are bond servants of Christ. “As free, yet not using liberty as a cloak for vice, but as bondservants of God.” (I Peter 2:16) Our life should be as free people without any pretext for wickedness; but at all times let us live as servants of God. Slaves were given food and clothing. “And having food and clothing, with these we shall be content.” (I Timothy 6:8)
Christians are to live “as” brethren. God expects Christians to live and love as brethren. “Finally, all of you be of one mind, having compassion for one another; love as brothers, be tenderhearted, be courteous.” (I Peter 3:8) Christians should be united in spirit, sympathizing with one another and loving each other as brethren. Christians are members of the same household. The whole of God's law is summed up in love. (Romans 13:8-10) Do you love the brethren?
Christians are to live “as” good stewards of God's grace. Christians must be faithful stewards of that which is granted them by God's grace. “As each one has received a gift, minister it to one another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God.” (I Peter 4:10) Christians are to be faithful stewards of the power and gifts granted by God's undeserved favor. Whatever the gifts that we have received, use them for one another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God. Are you a good trustee of God's many-sided grace?
Christians are to live “as” those that are willing to suffer for Christ. Rejoice that you are counted worthy to suffer as a Christian. “Yet if anyone suffers as a Christian, let him not be ashamed, but let him glorify God in this matter.” (I Peter 4:16) Christ suffered because He was holy. Christians suffer because they resemble Him. Jesus is never ashamed of the Christian, and His people should never be ashamed to suffer as a Christian. Are you ever ashamed of Christ, His name, His church or His teaching? Are you willing to suffer “as” a Christian?
Peter, by inspiration of God, has given us precious and powerful teachings on the manner of life Christians should live. Satan tries to get Christians to live a life displeasing to God. Christ wants us to “walk as children of light.” God bless you as you live for Jesus “as” He would have you live. If you live “as” Christ would have you live you can look forward to “an inheritance incorruptible and undefiled and that does not fade away, reserved in heaven for you.” (I Peter 1:4)
Are you in Christ? Have you heard the gospel (Romans 10:17); believed in Christ (John 8:24); repented of sins (Acts 17:30-31); confessed your faith in Christ (Matthew 10:32-33) and been baptized into Christ for remission of sins? (Acts 2:38, Acts 22:16) Are you faithful in Christ? Are you living “as” you should for Christ? Heavenly hope belongs only to those that live "as" God intends. If you are willing to serve God “as” you should, you will, one day, “Receive the end of your faith, even the salvation of your souls.” (I Peter 1:9)
By Charles Box,