Never give up…
In a life full of failures, temptations, pains, and sufferings how could someone meaningfully say the above words? In order for that, we need to have an assurance that goes beyond life in this world.
In his first letter, Apostle Peter brings to our attention the theme of never giving up and the specific words he uses is living hope. His words have power and truth to them. Because he has seen his Master, whom he thought was going to be the ruler of the nation, tortured, killed, and buried in the tomb. All his disciples almost gave up on their Master. Amazingly though He has risen from death and Peter has seen the risen Lord. So Peter’s words are grounded upon his experience and witness of the Lord Jesus Christ who defeated death.
He is in fact writing to the first-generation Christians who are in exile. These are the people who are exuberant because of their faith and at the same time going through persecution because of their new beliefs. It is never easy when you are treading something new that people have not heard of before. It is possible their own family, friends, and neighbors reject and ridicule them. Even today we hear a lot of stories of Christians persecuted for their faith. So we can slightly imagine the level of sufferings those first-generation believers faced. They needed the encouragement and the coming generations too.
Peter writes he has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, (1 Pet. 1:3 ESV). There are so many things that can tend to give hope. But as the verse says true and lasting hope rests in the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead. And the verse continues that those who are in Christ has an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you (1 Pet. 1:4 ESV). Think of that. All the possessions of the world we strive for will fade one day and even those that remain we leave at our deathbed. But In Christ we have an everlasting inheritance assured for us. What better reason to have the living hope!
Don’t get the Scripture wrong. Suffering is a part of life in this world, especially for those who believe in the Lord. It is not an easy life. But there is again good news and hope. Those who are in Christ do not need to bear the worries on their own. The epistle says casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you. (1 Pet. 5:7 ESV). Worries can wear you down and expose you to dangers. Again the good news is that the Lord is near you and ready to help. Just show the humility to seek His help. Then no matter the suffering you never give up.
Peter has another interesting usage of words to remind us never give up. It is “gird up the loins of your mind” (1 Pet 1:13). And the reason one can focus their mind in the right direction is because of the hope brought forth by the grace of Lord Jesus Christ. We have a Savior who redeemed us with His precious blood. And He assures us an eternal inheritance. He assures us of His help at times of suffering and temptations.
He will never give up on you. Let Him be your hope and the helper.