That they may, because of your good deeds, glorify God
1 Peter 2:11-3:7 from the daily reading in the One Year Bible
Beloved, I urge you as foreigners and strangers to abstain from fleshly lusts, which wage war against the soul. 12 Keep your behavior excellent among the Gentiles, so that in the thing in which they slander you as evildoers, they may because of your good deeds, as they observe them, glorify God on the day of visitation.
13 Submit yourselves for the Lord’s sake to every human institution, whether to a king as the one in authority, 14 or to governors as sent by him for the punishment of evildoers and the praise of those who do right. 15 For such is the will of God, that by doing right you silence the ignorance of foolish people. 16 Act as free people, and do not use your freedom as a covering for evil, but use it as bond-servants of God. 17 Honor all people, love the brotherhood, fear God, honor the king.
18 Servants, be subject to your masters with all respect, not only to those who are good and gentle, but also to those who are harsh. 19 For this finds favor, if for the sake of conscience toward God a person endures grief when suffering unjustly. 20 For what credit is there if, when you sin and are harshly treated, you endure it with patience? But if when you do what is right and suffer for it you patiently endure it, this finds favor with God.
21 For you have been called for this purpose, because Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example, so that you would follow in His steps, 22 He who committed no sin, nor was any deceit found in His mouth; 23 and while being abusively insulted, He did not insult in return; while suffering, He did not threaten, but kept entrusting Himself to Him who judges righteously; 24 and He Himself brought our sins in His body up on the cross, so that we might die to sin and live for righteousness; by His wounds you were healed. 25 For you were continually straying like sheep, but now you have returned to the Shepherd and Guardian of your souls.
3 In the same way, you wives, be subject to your own husbands so that even if any of them are disobedient to the word, they may be won over without a word by the behavior of their wives, 2 as they observe your pure and respectful behavior. 3 Your adornment must not be merely the external—braiding the hair, wearing gold jewelry, or putting on apparel; 4 but it should be the hidden person of the heart, with the imperishable quality of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is precious in the sight of God. 5 For in this way the holy women of former times, who hoped in God, also used to adorn themselves, being subject to their own husbands, 6 just as Sarah obeyed Abraham, calling him lord; and you have proved to be her children if you do what is right without being frightened by any fear.
7 You husbands in the same way, live with your wives in an understanding way, as with someone weaker, since she is a woman; and show her honor as a fellow heir of the grace of life, so that your prayers will not be hindered.
In Matthew 5:14-16 Jesus says: “You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden; nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on the lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. Your light must shine before people in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven.” In today’s text it says: Beloved, I urge you as foreigners and strangers to abstain from fleshly lusts, which wage war against the soul. Keep your behavior excellent among the Gentiles, so that in the thing in which they slander you as evildoers, they may because of your good deeds, as they observe them, glorify God on the day of visitation. Our lives should shine as lights in the midst of the darkness of the world. We should live as strangers to the culture of immorality and fleshly lusts, with the hope that they will see our good works and glorify God the Father. Philippians 2:10-11 says: At the name of Jesus every knee will bow, of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and that every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. Rather that they would glorify God now than only on the day of His visitation.
The text goes on to describe how our earthly relationships should be a reflection of heavenly ones. Jesus taught us to pray saying Our Father, who is in heaven, Hallowed be Your name. Your kingdom come. Your will be done, On earth as it is in heaven… Far too often though we instead try to apply human and earthly standards to God. Every dysfunction of human relationships, and every problem in our society and culture is rooted in lack of obedience and submission to God. In Genesis 1:1-3 it says: In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. And the earth was a formless and desolate emptiness, and darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the surface of the waters. Then God said, “Let there be light”; and there was light. The words formless and desolate emptiness are translated from the Hebrew word Tohu wa-bohu, and could also be translated to mean chaos. When God spoke, the chaos and desolate emptiness was brought to order. In the darkness there was light. Even today, without God’s word or in opposition and defiance of God’s word there is darkness and chaos.
Again, we are to be light in the darkness of the world, both by our actions and by speaking the truth of God’s word. 1 John 4:19 says: We love, because He first loved us. Our relationship with and our response to others should be based in and flow out from the truth that God first loved us. Romans 5:8 says: God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Our relationship with others should also demonstrate the love of God, that while they may yet be sinners, Christ died for them.
Our Father in heaven, Hallowed be Your name. Your kingdom come. Your will be done On earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, As we forgive our debtors. And do not lead us into temptation, But deliver us from the evil one. For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.