Peter has given us much language to describe ourselves and our responsibilities when it comes to who we are in Christ! In those describing statements, Peter claims “But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light” (1 Peter 2:9 ESV).
In this passage, we are called many things. We are called chosen, being picked by God to be saved, not out of our own goodness or worthiness but because of His grace, mercy and love towards us. We are called royalty because we are now princes and princesses because we have a Father who is a king! We are priests who “offer spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ (2:5b) because we have the Holy Spirit within us and we are sent to do God’s work as Light and Salt (Matthew 5:13-16). We are holy, set apart from the world to be in the world but not of it because as Jesus says, “I have given them your word, and the world has hated them because they are not of the world, just as I am not of the world.” (John 17:14). We are called God’s possessions because we were bought at a price, the price of Jesus on the cross.
But this last statement really struck home for me since I first read it, “That you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light.” This is a gospel passage of scripture. We were in darkness. We were dead and separated from God because we had gone willingly into the darkness. We searched for pleasure and comfort and identity in the darkness and we found it wanting. We were lost, alone and couldn’t find our way out of it because in that darkness we were blind.
But we weren’t left there to our own devices and sin and death. No, even in the darkness, one called out to us and in following that voice, we found a glimmer of light peaking out the door to heaven and by the voice of Jesus, we followed the voice that called out to us through that door out of the cave and into the sun. We were brought forth out of darkness into light because someone showed us the way and opened the door and reached into it and pulled us out into marvelous light.
We see everything that is excellent now because we have sight and we can see. Now we have the opportunity to call back to others who are still in darkness and call out to them and do what Jesus and others did for us. Proclaim the light and everything in it and help people find their way out of darkness. We were lost and now we’re found. Yet still there are others who are still lost. We are now proclaimers of Jesus’ glorious work that brought us into the light!
So go and proclaim the excellencies of Jesus as it is who we are!
Parkland Community Church:
We Exist to Develop People Who Love Jesus and Serve Others.