Chosen together with you. 1 Peter 5:13

As we conclude our study of 1 Peter, we pick up at verse 13 of chapter 5.  Under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, Peter writes:

“She who is in Babylon, chosen together with you, sends you her greetings, and so does my son Mark.  Greet one another with a kiss of love.  Peace to all of you who are in Christ.”
1 Peter 5: 13-14
Peter wrote this letter around 62-64 A.D., just before the Emperor Nero began persecuting Christians in Rome and through out the Roman Empire. Nero was becoming paranoid about the number of those who were following Jesus, and the fact that their allegiance was to Christ instead of him.  He decided to terrorize them, and to stamp them out.  His cruelty was radical and extreme.  He used Christians as human torches.  He used them for sport;  watching wild animals tear them to pieces, and kill them in the Arenas. He had them sewn in animal skins unable to move until they died. He was insane. He wanted them destroyed or banished from his empire, and set about trying to make that happen.
This is one of the reasons why Peter was writing to the Church, because He knew what was coming.  He wanted to encourage those who had accepted Christ, and to comfort them, and tell them what they had was real, and could not be taken from them regardless of what might happen.  He told them he was a witness to what they believed, and could tell them from first hand knowledge that Jesus was the risen Savior.  He had seen Jesus die.  He had seen Him rise from death.  He had seen Him taken up to Heaven after staying with the Apostles and other Disciples for 40 days teaching them and touching lives with His miraculous presence.  He personally knew that Jesus was the truth, the life, and the Way.  He saw it with his eyes, he knew it in his spirit from the presence of the Holy Spirit within.
Even though fear had caused Peter to deny the Christ three times during The Lord’s mock trial, nothing could shake his faith after the resurrection. He was not afraid to tel the world that Jesus was the Messiah, and that he loved Him, and followed Him, as he preached, and taught, and wrote letters such as this one for all to see.
  Tradition tells us that Peter was executed in Rome a couple of years or so after the persecutions began; but as he had urged the Church to do, he stood strong in his faith.  He knew the Lord had called him, and chosen him – though he was just a man like us – to be a rock of faith for the flock.  Jesus had told him, “Feed my Sheep.” He was called to tell the world where the Bread of Life is found.
His last words in this letter were to remind us that we too are chosen.  “Chosen together with you.” Peter, and some of our Brothers and Sisters had to face suffering like we cannot imagine; but Nero, nor anyone, nor anything else can stop the Love flowing from the Father through Christ our Lord to those who will say Yes, to the call. Our call is the same as Peter’s.
The Word tells us that when Jesus told Peter to “Feed my sheep.” , He first asked Peter a question.  He asked, “Do you love me?” (John 21:15-17)  So it is with us.  As we grow in the Lord, and fall more and more in love with Him, as we are fed by Him, we will realize that we are chosen to tell the world where the Bread of Life is found. Some times we are to use words.
As Peter wrote: “Greet one another with a kiss of love.  Peace to all of you who are in Christ.”
I love you, God’s Beloveds, my Brothers and Sisters in Christ Jesus.
Poppa B.
Abundant Life Christian Fellowship, On Line


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