3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! According to his great mercy, he has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, 4 to an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you, 5 who by God’s power are being guarded through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. 6 In this you rejoice, though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been grieved by various trials, 7 so that the tested genuineness of your faith—more precious than gold that perishes though it is tested by fire—may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ. 8 Though you have not seen him, you love him. Though you do not now see him, you believe in him and rejoice with joy that is inexpressible and filled with glory, 9 obtaining the outcome of your faith, the salvation of your souls. (1 Peter 1:3-9;ESV)
In every culture, people look for hope in justice, beauty, spirituality, and relationship. These are good in and of themselves, but they are not ends in and of themselves. They are woven into creation, they teach us that they are real, but not final, because they point us to something else. And it is the Christian belief, that these things point away from themselves to the one who created all things and from whom these four things are derived. So, the hope that eludes us in pursuing justice, beauty, spirituality, or relationships, are all found in the person of Jesus Christ, who created us, stamping his image upon us, making these echoes of his voice a means for us to turn to him for hope that is only and ultimately found in him.
What we see in part, in these four features of our souls, we find fulfilled in the Gospel of Jesus Christ especially as described in 1 Peter 1:3-9.
When justice, beauty, spirituality, and relationships cannot give us a lasting hope, the Gospel of Jesus Christ fulfills their intention, and is the destination that they pointed us to all along.
What are we born again to in v3?
How is it characterized by relationship in v3?
How is it characterized by justice in v3?
How is it characterized by beauty in v 4?
What word is used to characterize it by spirituality in v6-7? How is it proven true and refined?
“I believe in Christianity as I believe that the Sun has risen, not only because I see it but because by it, I see everything else.”C.S. Lewis in “Is Theology Poetry?”
The conceptual ideas for this message regarding Justice, Beauty, Relationship, and Spirituality were informed and inspired by Simply Christian by N.T. Wright