Close

God’s Calling For Marriage

05.31.20 Nathaniel Wall

  1. A Cross Before a Crown
    07.26.20 42m 38s
  2. Two Ways the Devil Wants to Devour You
    07.19.20 43m 46s
  3. Three Marks of a Godly Leader
    07.12.20 38m 36s
  4. Advance in Adversity
    07.05.20 38m 15s
  5. Five Things We Should Be In Troubling Times
    06.28.20 24m 31s
  6. Following Jesus is Bizarre
    06.21.20 35m 48s
  7. One Cure for Every Injustice
    06.14.20 37m 41s
  8. Be Blessed and Love Life
    06.07.20 41m 52s
  9. God’s Calling For Marriage
    05.31.20 40m 08s
  10. Called for a Purpose
    05.24.20 32m 00s
  11. Government … How Should We Respond?
    05.17.20 38m 43s
  12. Our New Identity
    05.10.20 34m 51s
  13. How to Respond to Difficult Days
    05.03.20 36m 48s
  14. Prepared for Problems
    04.26.20 32m 18s
  15. Finding Victory When You Feel Defeated
    04.19.20 34m 25s
  16. The Day that Changes Everything
    04.12.20 37m 22s
  17. Palm Sunday
    04.05.20 30m 48s

God’s Calling For Marriage

05.31.20 Nathaniel Wall All In Series

But it’s good to see you this morning. I’m glad you’re here. If you’ve got a Bible with you, I hope you do. We’re going to look in 1 Peter 3. We’re going to look at seven verses in 1 Peter 3 and today’s message, we’re going to talk about God’s purpose for marriage. God’s desire, his calling for marriage. As we get ready to dive into this text, the great part about this text is it’s not just, it uses the illustration of marriage, but this is very relevant to just human relationship in general. And not knowing some of the recent events that would happen in our news over the last few days. I’m sure most of us, if not all of us, are aware of, 1 Peter is really a beautiful book that speaks into what is necessary in a society in order to see change in a healthy way.

As we get ready to look at 1 Peter 3, I want to take just a minute and remind us of where we are in this text of scripture because this becomes very relevant to understanding this entire passage that we’re reading together. Because if you remember the context of 1 Peter, he’s writing to an early church that’s facing persecution and they’re trying to come at this from an understanding of how can we see change and live for Jesus in the midst of our circumstance. And Peter’s word that he uses in 1 Peter more than any other book in the Bible is this word of suffering. And so it gives this idea of understanding is writing to a group of believers, if you read the very beginning of 1 Peter the introduction. What you see is he’s writing to a group of believers in what is modern day Turkey and the hardship that they’re facing and how they live in light of that. And he gives beautiful response to see change.

I’m reminded of a quote from Leo Tolstoy and he said, everyone wants to see change in culture, but no one wants to do anything about change within themselves. And it’s easy to sit as an armchair quarterback and tell other people what they need to do and how unjust things are. But really the change starts within us. And Peter wants us to understand how we see that change happens. Because sometimes we live under this deception unless I have a position of authority, I have no power. And Peter writes to a group of people and if you follow early church history, what you see is that Christianity was really a grassroots movement and a lot of the change and transformation started in the household among slaves and among what people would consider in the lower class of society.

Jesus preached the message that showed the value of all of human beings. And how you can take your position, a position of lowly position in a culture and use that as a platform to make a difference in the lives of people around you. And that is Peter’s message from the very beginning of this book, chapter one he gives us the identity of a foundation of who we are in light of who Jesus is. Because of the power of Christ in his resurrection, he calls us to this holy calling and recognize the end of chapter one to live in a loving way and let the word of God feeds your soul because that gives us direction in how we’re to live in life. And then we start to, in chapter two he starts laying out for us how that should look.

In chapter two verse nine because of who Jesus is, he gives us this identity in Christ. It’s God’s call for all believers. And I just want to pepper what Peter says, some of these verses that he says to us as we lead into chapter three in verse one. And chapter two verse nine he says, remember you’re a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for God’s own possession so that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light. So God gives you this identity and he reminds us, he called us out of a place of darkness into his light. And what that gives us as a group of people is that it gives us an understanding that we operate from grace when we come into the lives of others because we too had found ourselves in darkness, but Jesus sets us free.

It’s not because we were lovable, because he is loving. It’s what he’s done for us in our sin. And now God gives us a platform to proclaim his excellence. It’s he’s not because of anything we’ve done, but because of the position that Jesus has given us. A chosen race, a Royal priesthood, a people for God’s own possession. You represent a new King in his kingdom. And your position in his kingdom matters. And God gives us this position no matter who we are, where we come from. It’s not about race, creed, class. It’s all of us in Jesus as we put our faith in Christ and representing him in that position. And so it’s from that understanding then he goes on in verse 16, act as free man and do not use your freedom as a covering for evil, but use it as bond slaves of God.

And so what he’s saying is, look, just because Jesus set you free doesn’t mean you look at the rest of this world and you just rub your nose at them. You use that platform to leverage for his glory to the benefit of others. Meaning, when you truly love God the way God loves then you’ll demonstrate your King. And what your King was about was loving others because he created others in his image, even when they’re in rebellion against this King. Jesus gave his life and he used his freedom to set you free and now calls us in our freedom to use that, to proclaim this King that they can find freedom in him.

So we don’t say to the world, even though it may live contrary to us, that forget you guys, you’re off on your own. But rather we go into the darkness as light and we proclaim the goodness of God because of the freedom he’s given to us. And he says in verse 17, honor all people. And Peter very much knows in this statement that sometimes all people are people that aren’t easy to love. But guess what: with Jesus, neither were we. And so he says, honor all people. If you want to see transformation in Christ, don’t diminish the glory of God made known in the lives of people. Even though people may rebel against your King, even though people may live contrary to your King, they’re still made in the image of God.

So honor all people, love the brotherhood. Fear God, honor the King. Verse 21, for you have been called for this purpose since Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example for you to follow in his steps. So God has called you in this purpose. And then I love what he does at the end of chapter two starting in verse 13 and then again in verse 18 and then he does this again in chapter three verse one he picks people that we would look at and culture and think they’re from a position of of low stature of authority. Meaning they’re the kind of people that would look at where they’re at and say, who am I to make a difference?

So when he in verse 13 verse 18 and chapter three verse one the people he chooses to represent, he says, okay, you that are under a government authority. You may not hold a government position, but you can still bring about change. You can still live for your King and his glory even if they don’t change.

And in chapter two, verse 18 he talks about when you have a bad boss, in fact, he doesn’t even just say boss, he actually says master over a slave. Now, that’s not to say that the Bible is for slavery, but rather what Peter is saying is, look, even if you find yourself in a position of a slave, it doesn’t make you powerless. What Peter wants to do is give a voice to all people on behalf of Christ, so that they can see how God has given them a position to make a difference in this world, even at the point of slave. Which is the irony of this passage is incredible because in chapter two, verse 16 he talks about freedom. And then chapter two verse 18 he talks about slavery.

Usually we wouldn’t put those two words together, as an idea. But Peter does. He’s recognizing even the lowliest positions in life, you can still speak to the hearts of people to see the Lord work in their lives. And then in chapter three, verse one he talks to women. Now guys, I’m going to just say maybe this morning we might be taking a little easy on you because when you look at this passage, seven verses are written, six of them for the ladies and only one of you for the guys. So guys, when you leave today, if you don’t have one verse memorize, we fail. So you got one verse in comparison to the six verses for the ladies. But I think it speaks truth for all of us here.

Why does he pack so much for ladies in comparison to the men? Well, I think it’s for this reason, in the first century, women were looked at as property. And so when you’re viewed as as property or you’re viewed as a second class citizen, what kind of voice are you given in a culture like that? How can you see God not just working in your life but through you into the lives of others to make a difference? So I think this is exactly why Peter is addressing these topics as he talks about government, he talks about slavery and he talks about the idea of being a woman and specifically a wife. What does this look like?

If you read 1 Peter 3:1, we’re going to dig a hole for ourselves a little bit guys, when we look at these verses, but we’re going to talk about what these passages represent. And I’m just going to say if I ask guys to quote verses sometimes I think this might be one that they have in their mind, but may not always be brave to state.

And I want this to be a little more thoughtful as to what this verse means. But in chapter three, verse one, if you just parachute in on this verse, you’re going to be saying, what in the world is this talking about? Look at this, the very beginning of verse one. In the same way you wives be submissive to your own husbands. How do you deal with that? Wives, be submissive to your husbands. Well, obviously we’re going to be talking in connection to husband and wife, we’re going to be talking about marital relationships. Let me just back off this statement for a minute and just say this: no marriage is perfect. I know sometimes we like to think, I got to find someone. If you’re, you’re on the hunt for a mate, you want to find someone compatible with you and everything’s just going to be roses.

I like doing sometimes premarital counseling with couples before they get married. They can’t think on God’s green earth why in the world they would ever have a dispute in their marriage. It’s like they just love each other. Everyone else did it wrong. They’ve got it right, they’ve got it figured it out. But no marriage is perfect. If marriage honestly was easy, we’d probably be missing about half the Bible. And when you look at scripture, the comfort to reading about marriage in scripture is that there’s a lot of bad things going on in marriages that sometimes will bring you a comfort to your own and saying, Oh look, we don’t always have it all together, but neither does some of the godly people in the Bible.

You think about Abraham married his half-sister. Jacob married two sisters. Hosea married a prostitute. Rehab was one. Mary was a pregnant young teenager, not married. While the woman at the well had five marriages. Solomon had too many wives to remember their names. And then in Proverbs, he writes about the nagging wife that no one wants to remember her name. When you read passages in scripture that relates to marriage, you see that there’s conflict in that relationship. But the blessing of marriage is that it’s the great refiner of your soul.

Marriage, living with someone 24 hours a day, seven days a week, it puts a spotlight on things where you’re strong in and things where you’re weak. And now in that relationship, two people get to work together towards the cause of what God has called them to be together. God created marriage to be a blessing. Some of that blessing is working through the challenges and some of those blessings are living in the successes of how God has gifted you.

And so when you look in this passage of scripture, I think it’s important to remember today, if you find yourself married, or if you thinking about marriage, I think God’s desire for us is not to become someone else’s Holy Spirit. Especially if you’re married, don’t become your spouses Holy Spirit today. Let the Lord work in their heart according the way God is leading them. And if there’s a part that you might agree with that you want your spouse to do, don’t amen that out loud or jump in your vehicle after we’re done and nag them to death over what it is you think that they need to do and change.

Here’s what we can do. We can pray for each other, right? Especially for your spouse and what God desires for them to become. So chapter three, verse one, what is this thing? In the same way, you wives be submissive to your husbands. Well, let me just say this first. Notice this doesn’t say women, be submissive to men, okay? This is specific within the marital relationship. And then he gives us an illustration at the very beginning. He says in the same way, and the question we should ask ourselves in what way? What is that same way he’s referencing? And if you read the example that Peter has just come off of before he made this statement, his example isn’t about women, here’s an example of submission, so therefore continue to be submissive. His example is Jesus.

And what he says in chapter two, verse 21 if you look at this passage of scripture, he gives it for all believers, for you have all been called for this purpose since Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example for you to follow in his steps.

So this idea of submission isn’t specific to just women, though Peter is talking about wives in this illustration, this example is for everyone. And now he’s going to relate it to wives and then he’s going to relate it to husbands. And so this isn’t to diminish ladies at all, but rather recognize how we can use position, especially in the first century when ladies might’ve been viewed as property. How can you use your position to see a difference in your marriage? In your family? Or to even see yourself elevated as a child and created in the image of God and not some second class individual?

So he carries this idea the same way he’s done throughout all the passages of scripture, whether it was before the government, whether it was before your boss. It’s this idea of submission to understand the power of what it represents.

If you want to read a passage of scripture that relates real well to 1 Peter 3, Ephesians 5:21 also talks about marriage. It is a famous passage of scripture that relates to marriage. And as it starts to talk about the husband and wife relationship, what it says in the very beginning, verse 21, is be submissive to one another. So this idea of submission isn’t just set for one person, but honestly it’s for everybody. You think about what your example is. It is Jesus. King of Kings, Lord of Lords. In Philippians 2 tells us though, being in the form of God, he takes the form of a servant and he serves to the point he goes to the cross. Meaning when Jesus walks in the room, Jesus was always the most important person in the room. But Jesus never walked in and said, I am the most important person in the room. What Jesus did was serve. He found the needs of people and he helped them to discover who they were in God’s eyes and to live out their calling according to the way that he had created them.

And guys in a marital relationship, that’s what God calls us to. The intimacy of that relationship more than any other. Who does God call your spouse to be? And how can you help them from that position to become that? And so he says this in chapter three verse one in the same way you wives be submissive to your own husbands. When you think about submission, submission is not easy because submission has to do with sacrifice. Laying down of yourself for the benefit of others.

Now I want to be clear in saying being submissive doesn’t mean being abused. So there are certain things that are just toxic to you as an image bearer of God. And so if it breaks laws, it breaks laws, and we have laws for a reason. That is to protect your life. God cares about your life too. But submission has to understand that God has given you a platform in your position to make a difference in this world.

So why would we ever be submissive for the benefit of others? Well, it’s because our identity isn’t from this world. Our Identity is given to us by God. It’s through our confidence in the identity of which we receive in Jesus, that the position of this world really don’t matter to us. Those are inconsequential or secondary, I should say, to the position that we have in Jesus. It’s because of that great position an d the way that we’re viewed in Christ eyes, that we’re able to represent representation of that King, to leverage that for the benefit of others because it’s about his glory and not mine. It’s about how people view him and not me.

So God’s call for a wife in 1 Peter 3:1-2. Let me read the whole text here. It says, same way wives, be submissive to your own husbands so that even if any of them are disobedient to the word, they may be won without a word by the behavior of their wives as they observe your chaste and respectful behavior. What’s the concern here? The concern for a believing wife is for her unbelieving husband who without the transformation of Jesus in his life is still going to look at his wife the way culture would view women. A second class citizen, property.

So Peter is sharing how from this position even to an unbelieving spouse, how you can share the truth of God in a loving way to them. He says the way that works in our heart is through showing your care for them. Because even if you don’t agree with someone, if they feel like despite your disagreement, if you’re still for them, you’ll have an ear. If they have this general feeling that you care for their wellbeing, that you’re looking out for them. Even if your advice or your words may be in conflict with where they are wanting to go, they’re going to respect what you have to say and where you’re at more often than not because of the position that you carry before them, which is for their benefit. Your love and care for them. And so Peter encourages us to think about leadership in this way. In order for a position to take the position of a servant that the recognize it’s not about authority.

There are plenty of people that have positions of authority that no one listens to. Why? Because no one respects what they have to say. They’ve lost their influence because they’re no longer communicating to the heart. They’re using their position of authority to try to press someone’s behavior. They’ve completely lost the respect. What he’s getting us to understand as a place of influence has far more power. I think about even over this past week listening to a few of Martin Luther King Jr. speeches, how he continued to take what most people would say is the position of a pacifist to make a difference. But people respected that position to make a difference because while they may not even fully agreed with it, he spoke to the heart.

He cared about the heart and he walked with integrity towards another human being. Even if he was in conflict with them. I don’t like putting the definition of pacifist on him because I think if anything he wasn’t a pacifist, he was actively doing something. But I think his activities still honored the glory of an individual even though it might have been out of alignment with God’s word and speaking the truth of what God says about the integrity of a human being. I think he walked in alignment with what Peter says in this passage of scripture. Understand why disagreeing, caring, respect for another human being still makes a difference in this world. And Peter is encouraging us to think about that here.

So leadership is not primarily about authority but about influence. And so when you think about this passage of scripture though, we could ask the question, okay, so why would we not observe what it says? Here we are in another position talking about submission, whether it’s to government, whether it’s marital relationship, whether it’s with your boss. Why do we not want to walk according to what Peter says?

I think there’s a couple reasons we might conflict with this. One is that we don’t want to carry the value of the Lord because we don’t want to make him King of our lives, but rather we would be king of our lives. And so being King of our own lives, we don’t want us to admit to anything. We want to tell other people how important we are and what they’re to do for us, rather than figure out how we can take our position in Jesus and serve them.

So we think we elevate ourselves to the position of God or we make life about us. And everything around us are simply tools to serve us, even other people. Or if I just said it in a more broad way, we could just walk with unbelief. That we don’t believe what Jesus is saying in bringing change in culture and seeing people come to know Christ. That this model isn’t really the best way. That I need to just boss people and tell people what to do.

But Peter is saying in this passage, look the way in your model, the way that Jesus made a difference in this world, consider that in your own life and the way that you serve. And then he goes on and he gives this example. He says, verse three and four, your adornment must not be merely external, braiding the hair and wearing gold jewelry or putting on dresses, but let it be the hidden person of the heart with the imperishable quality of a gentle and quiet spirit.

If you think about the cultural preaching to the women, not biblical teaching, but what the culture would be saying to women during this time period. That since they are second class, or treated as property, their value, they would find more in their physical appearance. It’s not about who you are in your heart, it’s just about your outward adornment because we don’t look the same at you because you’re not a man, so you’re less than us. And so the temptation of a woman might be to just find her value on the outside.

If I want to make a difference, I got to make him think that I’m pretty. It’s always just about the outward appearance in order to use that to manipulate and try to get what I want. And I don’t think beauty is a bad thing. Like we’re out here worshiping today in this beautiful outdoors. God is certainly creative. God has certainly a beautiful, and he puts beautiful things on display. But it’s to recognize that beauty has a place. And it’s not to usurp the integrity and the image that you have within you being created in God’s design. What Peter wants us to begin to recognize here is when you take the heart of a servant, what matters to God is where your heart rests. Because in the end, beauty fades.

But the integrity of your heart is what lasts. If you start relationship just on the outward appearance, like when beauty fades, what do you have? Or when there comes a moment in life where you want to speak to the heart but you’ve never based your relationship on that type of communication, it’s always been on the physical or the outward display, just that surface level, how do you make a difference when you don’t have that opportunity to pour into one another in that way.

So Peter is saying, look, you’re created as a woman in integrity, in the image of God and nurture that because that becomes the platform to make a difference in this world. You’re more than just your outward appearance. But God has created you to make a difference in the lives around you. If you want to speak truth in their lives, let God grow your heart.

There’s this old adage that says what you win people with is what you win people to. It’s why as a church that, while I recognize that we could be a church just simply about performance and entertaining people, I refuse to be something like that. Because what you win people with is what you win them to. And we want to be people of the Word. At the end of the day, all else fails. We want to be people of God’s Word. Because that’s what transforms life. If you want to be entertained, you can go all kinds of places to be entertained in this world. But what sets us apart is we’re creatures of God’s Word and that’s what makes a difference.

When it comes into relationships, we want to speak truth into those relationships because, and have the opportunity to that because we’re growing in our ourselves in God’s Word. That’s why Peter started in chapter two verse one desire and nurture yourself on the Word of God because it is the pure milk in which you grow by. In your walk with Jesus, you have something to impart before the Lord. Peter encourages us this way. And then he says this, the very last part of verse four because this is precious in God’s sight.

You want to know what Jesus finds beautiful? I think he finds people created in his image. You’re his handiwork, but it’s people that continue to nurture what God is doing on the inside of their lives. Growing that way you cannot impart what you do not possess. Knowing that your King has called you to make a difference in this world, allowing the Lord to nurture that in your soul becomes significant to him. And he goes on and he gives this illustration of Sarah who who did this. He says in verse five, for in this way, in former times the holy women also who hoped in God used to adorn themselves being submissive to their own husbands. Just as Sarah obeyed Abraham, calling him Lord, and you have become her children if you do what is right without being frightened by any fear.

I wish I was making this up, but one time I met a guy that read this verse and I don’t know if he was a new Christian or not, but he told me after I read this verse in his house, he made his wife call him, Lord. I didn’t get his number. I should probably have checked in on and say, well, how did that work out for you? I don’t think that’s what this passage is saying. Guys, we don’t want to be foolish to apply it that way. This is definitely a cultural example as it relates to Sarah in a way in her time in which they honored people.

But here’s the point. Respect. Never diminished the image of God in another human being. I’ve said this before to us going through this series, if you use how other people act as an excuse to react, you’re going to find any excuse in this world to behave however you want. But if we act the way that God has called us to act, no matter what happens in this world, we always treat people with integrity, and I think it starts in the home.

Now, let me talk a little bit more about that image of God. I want to look at what he says to the men as well. So God’s call to the men. When you look at this verse in verse seven guys, this passage is powerful to us because it speaks to the adornment and the beauty of ladies. Let me just say this as I dive into this passage. If you think about God’s call to women to be submissive, and this is really a mutual call for both husbands and wives, but if you think about God’s call to the wife in submission to husband, I think it’s important to recognize in your life, men that you provide a platform for that type of action to be a blessing to your wife or a hardship. Do you make that something that she delights in doing or something that she has to grit her teeth and despises doing because of the way that you respond to her?

If I said among the godly ladies here today that love Jesus, have I said, “Ladies, what do you think about? What do you think about the Lord? Do you submit to Jesus?” And I think our godly women will say, of course they’ll say yes. And then you might say, well, why would you submit to Jesus? Well, the answer would be pretty simplistic. It’s understanding if you know anything about Jesus. Jesus may lead us down hard paths in life. They might have challenges in front of us because following him isn’t always about being easy. Jesus says, take up your cross and follow him.

But here’s some things Jesus does tell us that as we follow that path that he leads us on, he never leaves us nor forsake us. He always cares about us where we are. His love never ends for us and he always works all things together for good to those who love God, who are called according to his purpose. So yeah, it may not always be an easy road, but I gladly submit to Jesus because I’m always walking in the love of Jesus when I do that. You say, well what about your husband? And you can just say, well, he has no Jesus.

And the point is guys, do you make this something that your wife would delight in or not? Because the way that you serve her also creates that sort of environment in your home. This is what he’s saying to you men in chapter three verse seven, husbands in the same way. Got that? In the same way. In the same way as what? In the same way as everything he just said. In the same way, live with your wives in an understanding way as with someone weaker since she is a woman. Now, how do you deal with that?

It says wives are weaker since she is a woman. And you should be on how you state that phrase, right? I mean, we could read that like this since she’s a woman. Or do you read it like it’s God’s divine design from the garden of Eden. If you read how God creates in the garden of Eden in chapter one, God creates everything including man into the sixth day. And after creating everything he says it’s good. But ladies, is not until he creates you that he says it’s very good. And you want to know the first song ever sung in scripture? The first song ever sung in scripture is when Adam meets his wife for the first time. That bone of my bone, flesh of my flesh, you shall be called woman because you come from the man, that is a song. And so the song of your heart should be about seeing the beauty of your wife being honored in this world. So when he says this in the last phrase, since she is a woman, it’s not saying it in a derogatory way, but to recognize how God has created her from the beginning as a blessing in this world. That it is very good after she’s created, since she’s a woman.

So what does it mean then that he says weaker? Well, I want you to read the very next part of this verse because it starts to paint a picture of what Peter has in mind. And I’m going to give you an illustration. If you’re reading from the King James, I love the way that King James says it here because it highlights something in the Greek tax that you don’t get in the New American Standard, which is what I’m reading. In the Greek text it says a weaker vessel. And that becomes a very important picture of what Peter is saying in this passage. But if you look at the very next part of this verse, it says, and show her honor as a fellow heir of the grace of life. And so what Peter is saying is, look, she’s a woman and you were to honor her being created in God’s image as an equal. An heir in God’s reign.

The grace of God made known equally in her life as it is in your life. And you were to honor her in that way. So that’s the picture: this co-heir. No one is beneath anyone, but you’re beside one another in what God has called you to in this world. And that that really generally just relates to all of God’s people. That there is no one better than anyone else. We’re all to live out God’s calling together in Christ. And so you see that in the second part of verse seven, show her honor as a fellow heir of God’s grace.

So what does it mean when he says then weaker as the King James says as weaker vessel? I’ll give this picture: in your household, you’ll have dishware or different instruments that you use for common things. And in your home you’ll have things that you choose to put in a different position because you honor them. What I mean in my house, we have regular plates that we use and then we might have special plates for us for a specific or special occasion. If you are Tupperware in my house, you get treated like trash, you just throw it in the cupboard and pull it out and you need it.

But there are certain things in your home that you honor. Maybe even in your home, you might think of a work of art. That when people come in, you have given it this particular place, that one, you don’t want it to get in harm’s way, but at the same time you want it to become a focal point in your home. And so you treat it as such that it’s precious in comparison to everything else in your house. Or you might think of if you’ve moved recently, you box some things up and things you really don’t care about, you just slapped together. You might write what room it goes in, but you just kinda throw it in there. Throw it aside and just say get it in the truck.

But then there’s some things that you just pause, you set it aside, you write fragile. You look for the moving person that doesn’t look like he’s missing a few brain cells because you’re thinking, okay, I need you to be especially careful here. Don’t trip. Don’t drop. You can read the words fragile? This is a special box to me. You want to treat this with honor and respect. When you get to your home that you’re moving to, when you pull that box out, you make sure that that’s the first box back off the truck. You treat it with respect because the contents inside are fragile, but you also know they’re important. So you want to honor it. You don’t want diminish its value. You don’t want to devalue it.

Let’s say you unload that box and someone comes and visits your house and they say the beautiful artwork and they think that they might be an artist. Let’s say it’s a beautiful vase that you have. And they think to themselves, you know, I’m an artist too. And they grabbed that vase off and you’re thinking, this thing is special to me because that’s my mother’s vase. And they grabbed this vase and maybe your mother has passed and they grab a marker and they start doodling on this vase. You see someone diminishing the beauty of whatever it might be, if it is a vase. Not only do you see that as destructive, but you see it as maybe even an insult to your mother that passed off this heirloom. It’s an insult to her because her image is in this because you’ve related that to her.

Now this is what Peter is saying in this passage of scripture. He’s not devaluing women at all because they’re co heirs in the reign of Christ together. That we work together in what God has called us to. But what he’s rather doing is he’s creating this image for husbands in the home to think. Look guys, there’s things in your home that yeah, they’re common, you treat them as common, but that is not your wife. Above everything in your home she is to be honored. Why? She was given as a gift. She’s a gift.

I love how Adam saying to Eve in the garden. When Adam first met Eve, the Bible doesn’t record for us that he asked her 50 questions about what she was good at, not good at before he decided whether or not he was going love her. He just recognized that she was God’s gift to him. And regardless of what her struggles are or her strengths, he had already determined he was going to love her because she was God’s gift to him.

Same is true for you. We all have struggles. We all have battles. We’re all made in the image of God. And God’s given you a platform to make a difference in the lives of people around you. And how does it happen? It’s the form of a servant for the benefit of others. And the reason that we can do this is because we’re not looking to them to give us our position. We already have our position in Jesus. Here’s what I want us to see ,guys, at the very end of this verse. This is relevant for all of us, but very important to see, the very last phrase he says, look at this, so that your prayers will not be hindered. So that your prayers will not be hindered.

Do you see what he’s saying? Your relationship with God is not disconnected from your relationship with others. What he’s saying is your relationship with God is interconnected with your relationship with others and it starts in your home. You want to worship God? Consider how you treat the people around you. Or maybe we could ask it this way. Do you want to know how you worshiped God this week? Look back through your week and how you treated others. Because the way you treat others communicates how you view their image before God and how you view your God who created them in his image.

You want to love Jesus this week? Tangibly loved the people around you. And how does that look? Through the form of a servant. Helping them become who God has called them to be. And I think the place that that should begin is in the home. And the reason I say that is because God created the home to be a blessing to this world.

I know some of us right now might be thinking about our home and thinking, man, it doesn’t feel like it’s in order. It might feel a little chaotic. Remember, this is exactly how Peter started 1 Peter 3. The concern of the wife, her husband is not a believer and she cares about his soul. And so Peter starts off this entire section, look, here’s how you see change. It’s not about nagging, but rather it’s about praying. It’s about serving. It’s about loving. I don’t think that that means we can’t share truth. I think that it does mean that we speak truth in the lives of people, but it’s not for the purpose of us wanting to change them. It’s for the purpose of wanting to see the glory of God made known in their lives.

So when you think about this passage of scripture, I think the beauty is is for all of us guys, that this entire section of Peter is about seeing a change in this world and how we can use whatever position we are in for the glory of God and to the benefit of others. But I think regardless of whether or not someone changes or not, the beauty is that you maintain fellowship with your Lord. Because the end of this verse reminds us of that. So that your prayers are not hindered.

Do you want to worship God this week? Connect to your Creator. One of the most beautiful ways that you can do it is loving others, especially when it’s times that are hard. I think that’s when the light of Christ is made known and it’s when you communicate more than any other that your love is centered on Jesus.