Five Ways This Lifestyle Reflects Christ In Me.
That is, in fact, what Peter says is the case. He tells us five times that this amazing kind of life, so contrary to human nature, is owing to our connection with God. God is being shown, because God is the key to this utterly counter- natural way of life. In other words for us Christians it Does make a difference. A radical difference. The root of our fallen nature is severed by the axe of God. we now are living from radically different premises, different values, different priorities, a different focus altogether.
Notice the five times that Peter connects to God this radical freedom from our old, natural spirit of retaliation.
1. Conscience Toward God
Verse 19:”For this finds favor, if for the sake of conscience toward God a man bears up under sorrows when suffering unjustly.” We do not endure sorrow and unjust suffering out of the fear of man or even out of our own weakness. Those are irrelevant. We bear it “for the sake of conscience toward God.“ That is, we take God into account. We look to God and not to our circumstances. God is the unseen factor for the world. They will never understand our behavior when we live for God. Why don’t you fight back? The Christian servant answers, “My conscience is bound to God.”
2. Favor with God
Verse 20:”For what credit is there if, when you sin and are harshly treated, you endure it with patience? But if when you do what is right and suffer for it you patiently endure it, this finds favor with God.”
what Peter means here is that God delights in our behavior that reflects utter reliance on His Grace when the supports of the world are knocked out. When a Christian, out of “conscience towards God,” looks to God for strength and courage and hope and peace in a time of suffering; and as a result bears the suffering patiently, God sees it as a tribute to His grace. God is seen in it. And when God is seen God is pleased.
THESE ARE TWO OF THE FIVE WAYS MY LIFESTYLE REFLECTS CHRIST IN ME.