But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear. 1 Peter 3:15
But Our verse starts with a word used to contrast two ideas. Only one idea is given in our verse, “sanctify the Lord God in your hearts” What is it contrasted to? Just before telling us to sanctify the Lord, Peter quotes the Prophet Isaiah.
…and be not afraid of their terror, neither be troubled. 1 Peter 3:14b
Peter quoted a passage of Isaiah, spoken to the people of Immanuel (those who the Almighty God was with, Isaiah 8:10). His message to the people of Immanuel? The dreadful king of Assyria was conquering the world as a flooding river conquers the land with water. Many countries had already fallen, including the sister state of Northern Israel. Now the land of promise, Zion, Jerusalem, the city of the great KING, is about to be over run and devastated by the dreadful Assyrians. No one had been able to stand against Assyria before.
But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts; 1 Peter 3:15a
Evil, pain, the shadow government, heartbreaking loss, deep disappointment, whatever the devil uses to flood your life with despair, threatens to sweep over you like a flood, as a conquering army, as wicked as the ancient Assyrians or modern Isis (who went after the same real-estate as the Assyrians). No one has ever stood against them before and now you are in their rifle scope, the red dot of their lasers are on your heart. Terror is the normal response.
Sanctify; the Greek word translated to English as Sanctify is also translated as “saint” and “holy”. It means “to make clean, to render pure”. Render is a word I learned as a young bride. It is what we did with the left-over scraps of pork fat after butchering and packaging all the parts of the pig. The fatty chunks were put into a large pot and gently heated to melt the fat. This separated the “lard” from the rest of the stuff in the pot. The Bible speaks of the refiners fire that separates silver from the dross. The fire make pure. To “sanctify” is to make something pure. “Sanctify the Lord God in your hearts…” Purify your worship, and get rid of the junk. Worship is Spirit and in truth. Isaiah 48:10, John 14:6
…and be ready always to give an answer to every man... Are you a believer in Y’shua-Jesus (the Salvation of God)? Are you born again, do you remember when that happened? Why are you born again? What brought you that event? The answer to these questions are the foundation of your testimony, the answer you are to give to those who ask about the hope you have in Y’shua-Jesus even if their questions are not stated this same way.
…the hope that is in you… The Hope is not just a possibility that I wish for, it is what connects me to God. The Hope is “in” you, the Hope that connects me to God is the Holy Spirit whom we receive when we are born again. If the hope is not “in” you, then it is only a wish, it is the hard work done to try and make us good enough to go to heaven when our life ends. People who are not “born-again” have a “hope-so” wish that they are good enough for heaven instead of hell. Nothing a human does can buy them a ticket to heaven. Only the blood of Y’shua-Jesus, harvested on the cross, can make you acceptable for heaven. I share my Hope with you. Death is the only way to pay for sin. The blood of Y’shua-Jesus, who NEVER sinned EVER pays for YOUR sin and, because he was the only person to ever not have personal sin, who did not earn his own death sentence. He was resurrected to eternal life. By faith (fidelity to Him who is the Torah made flesh) brings you to heaven with Him.
Sanctify Him in your heart. Let the Holy Spirit teach you how to live Torah as the Anointed (Christ and Messiah both mean Anointed) did when he lived on earth. He is our example. He told the most careful religious person, “You must be born again.” We also must be born again. Salvation (Y’shua and Jesus both mean salvation), being born again, is how we receive the gift of the blood payment of Y’shua for our sin and gives us eternal life. Faith is how we receive the Holy Spirit, who is the evidence that we belong to the Kingdom of Heaven and proof that we pray in Jesus Name. The Holy Spirit teaches us how to live the Word of God, how to reject the way of the world, to sanctify Him in our hearts. The “meekness and fear” are the subject of our daily life, our witness, our testimony to a lost world, knowing how often we mess up.
To God be the Glory!
Debs…. who is praying that you know if you are born-again or if you are just religious (or less), and that you are able to tell why you trust Jesus instead of anything else the world offers when the flood of wickedness overwhelms your world. You can stand.
August 4, 2018