Tested by Fire:
A Lenten Bible Study on 1 Peter
Mark Vitalis Hoffman, Hope Lutheran Church, Fargo, ND
Second Week of Lent - February 28-March 5, 1996
A Holy Nation
A Study of 1 Peter 1.13-2.10
- What was the craziest thing you did in high school?
- What is the best tasting food you have ever eaten?
- What is the biggest sacrifice you have ever made?
For Your Information:
- Read 1 Peter 1.13-16
- Prepare your mind for action (13): Literally, gird
up the loins of your mind. The image is of pulling up a long
garment that would hinder running and tightening your belt.
- Discipline yourselves (13): Literally, act soberly,
act with sober thinking.
- Do not be conformed (14): Read Romans 12.1-2 for further
information about what this means.
- Holy (15, 16): This important theme is mentioned again
in 2.5 and 9. The quotation in verse 16 is from Leviticus 19.2.
- Read 1 Peter 1.17-21.
- Exile (17): This image will be used again in 2.11.
- Read 1 Peter 1.22-25.
- Mutual love (22): The Greek word is philadelphia.
- The quotation in verses 24-25 is from Isaiah 40.6-8.
- Good news that was announced (25): This is a translation
of the Greek word euaggeliz§ from which comes our word
- Read 1 Peter 2.1-3.
- Read 1 Peter 2.4-8.
- To get a better picture of all these images about stones and
cornerstones and rocks, read: Isaiah 8.14-15 and 28.16 and Psalm
118.22. Note also how this tradition is used in Matthew 21.42;
Mark 12.10-11; Luke 2.34 and 20.17; Acts 4.11; Romans 9.32-33.
- Read 1 Peter 2.9-10.
- Chosen race, royal priesthood, holy nation, God's own people
(9): For some background on these descriptions, read Exodus 19.3-6.
- The quotation in verse 10 is from Hosea 2.23.
For Your Consideration:
- 1.13 - How do you go about "preparing your mind for action"?
- 1.14 - What sort of things do you think would be included
in the warning against being "conformed to the desires you
formerly had in ignorance"?
- 1.13-15 - List the five things we are encouraged to do. What
sense of progression do you get from these? Which of these is
hardest for you to do?
- 1.15 - It says, "Be holy yourselves in all your conduct."
What does it mean for you to be holy? How is this saying different
from, "Be wholly yourselves in all your conduct"?
How might they be the same?
- 1.13-16 - What are some things you do or do not do because
you are a Christian?
- 1.16 - How can the statement, "You shall be holy,"
be understood as both a command and a promise?
- 1.17 - What does it mean to live in reverent fear? (The Greek
simply says to "conduct yourselves in fear.") Is this
a good or bad thing?
- 1.18 - Consider all the things in your life which are "perishable."
For which of these would you want to get some kind of insurance?
Which things in your life are imperishable? How do you budget
your time and energy with regard to what is perishable or imperishable?
- 1.14, 18-19 - Read these verses from the perspective of someone
who is not a Christian. How would a non-Christian respond to them?
Better yet, how would you explain them to a non-Christian?
- 1.14, 2.2 - At what stage in your Christian would you say
that you are? An "obedient child"? A "newborn infant"?
Someone who has "grown into salvation"? In what ways
have you seen your spiritual life grow?
- 2.3 - When have you "tasted" that the Lord is good?
- 2.5 - As what kind of "living stone" would you describe
yourself? Granite or sandstone? A fossil? A geode? Obsidian? Marble
- 2.6-9 - In your experience, how have you seen Jesus to be
both a precious "cornerstone" as well as stone that
is "rejected" and causes people to stumble?
- 2.9 - Note the four things that it says Christians are. Which
of these is the most encouraging description for your life as
- 2.9 - How does this description of the Christian community
relate to discussions about the United States as a Christian nation?
- Set aside time for prayer, reflection, and the daily Bible
- Memorize 1 Peter 2.9.
- Who do you think you are?!?! In addition to 1 Peter 2.9, daily
remind yourself of the words pronounced at Baptism: "Child
of God, you have been sealed by the Holy Spirit and marked with
the cross of Christ forever."
Daily Bible Readings for February 28-March 5
These daily Bible readings are given with the hope that they
will help you on your spiritual journey through Lent. Before beginning
a Bible reading, start your meditation time with prayer, perhaps
the Lord's Prayer. Then read the passage from 1 Peter which is
given for that day. (Readings for Sunday are not given. Go to
church!) Through the course of Lent, you will read the entire
letter of 1 Peter. A second passage is also suggested and part
of your meditation should be to determine what connections there
are between this passage and the 1 Peter reading for that day.
The Lord be with you.
Wednesday: 1 Peter 1.13-16; Romans 12.1-2
Thursday: 1 Peter 1.17-21; Ephesians 2.11-16
Friday: 1 Peter 1.22-25; John 13.34-35
Saturday: 1 Peter 2.1-3; Psalm 34.8-10
Monday: 1 Peter 2.4-8; Psalm 118.20-24
Tuesday: 1 Peter 2.9-10; Ephesians 5.8-10