“And through your faith, God is protecting you by His power until you receive this salvation, which is ready to be revealed on the last day for all to see…You love Him even though you have never seen Him. Though you do not see Him now, you trust Him and you rejoice with a glorious, inexpressible joy. The reward for trusting Him will be the salvation of your souls.” (1 Peter 1:5, 8-9 NLT)
Salvation from sin and deliverance from the evil one are of incalculable value. How do I know that? Because when Peter speaks of the blood of Christ (1 Peter 1:7) it’s described as “precious,” which literally means “of inestimable worth.” Its value is so great it can’t be calculated. Why is that important for us to know? Because that’s what Jesus believed you are worth to Him!
For a human being to wander through life aimlessly and without purpose is to slap God in the face and pretend Jesus’ death was for naught. It’s to take a priceless painting and use it for a liter box. It’s to ignore your inheritance as a child of God and to continue to live as a spiritual pauper.
What is the channel through which this priceless Treasure is obtained? “through your faith!” Read carefully the verses above and notice what God is doing while we wait for the final consummation of our faith. He’s protecting us until the Lord returns for His own. The word Peter uses in verse 5 that’s translated “protecting” is a word that means to “protect by military guard,” but it’s not a few soldiers that have nothing better to do. It paints the picture of a whole garrison, a post where many soldiers are stationed. Why? To protect you from Satan’s attempts to derail your faith. That’s their sole purpose.
The word literally means: “by watching and guarding to preserve one for the attainment of something.” What is so vitally important that God has placed you in His “protective custody” to guarantee you don’t miss it? Peter reveals it in verse 9: “The reward for trusting Him will be the salvation of your souls.”
When Jesus returns He will obviously be the center and focus of everyone’s attention, as well He should be. But at some point on that very special day, He’s going to shift the focus to those who will be receiving a very special gift. And what is that gift? Our salvation!
Notice the “credentials” of these privileged ones: “You love Him even though you have never seen Him. Though you do not see Him now, you trust Him, and you rejoice with a glorious, inexpressible joy.” Why? Why do we rejoice with such joy? Because our faith is anchored in who Jesus is and what He accomplished for us on the cross. And what is our reward for that faith? “The reward for trusting Him will be the salvation of your souls.”
“Yeh,” you may be wondering, “but I thought I was already saved.” See, that’s the thing, you are being saved, but the final chapter of our development as a child of God won’t be celebrated until we see Him face to face. That’s when the books will be opened and the names will be announced; that’s when we who have quietly and conscientiously been going about pursuing the Kingdom of God will hear our names. But it’s not like He’ll be reading name after name after name leading to one huge celebration.
In my mind’s eye I see everyone huddled together, millions of us waiting for our name to be read, anticipating our audience with the King, almost like our graduation from school or an awards ceremony when we finally receive the reward for which we’ve been longing. I don’t know exactly how to describe what I’m thinking, but it’s like a time lapse, like time stands still while Jesus calls our name and we go before Him. But rather than a ceremonial pat on the shoulder or shake of our hand, He takes us in His arms and holds us. It’s the kind of embrace you never want to end, it’s so satisfying, like you’ve lived your whole life for this moment. Then you hear His words: “I’m so proud of you! I know you struggled. I know you wanted to quit, but you hung in there. You trusted Me when it seemed I was far away. Today I’m celebrating you and I want everyone here to know how special you are to Me. Welcome home!”
It’s such a private moment, yet, it’s the reward of our life of loving without seeing, yet trusting; rejoicing with a glorious, inexpressible joy to which we’ve never quite been able to express until today…”FOR ALL TO SEE!”
Blessings, Ed 😊