“I have written and sent this short letter to you with the help of Silas, whom I commend to you as a faithful brother. My purpose in writing is to encourage you and assure you that what you are experiencing is truly part of God’s grace for you. Stand firm in this grace.” 1 Peter 5:12 NLT
Silas (Silvanus - greek name -KJV) was a faithful brother in Christ that we read about in the missionary journeys of the apostle Paul (see Acts 15 verses 22, 40 -18:5; see also 2 Corinthians 1:19; I Thessalonians 1:1; 2 Thessalonians 1:1). It is good to have faithful brothers and sisters in Christ in the church. We depend upon each other to accomplish the purpose of the church. We are the body of Christ and each of us play a role in its health and success. God saves us through Christ. We are born again by our faith in Jesus and He places us within the framework of His body called the church. We didn't get this privilege by our own meritorious conduct. God's grace alone has saved us and allowed us to be a part of the church. We should count it the highest honor to be called by His name and to be allowed to serve in His kingdom. Are you a faithful servant of God? Do others consider you a blessing to the church or are you AWOL (Absent Without Leave)? If the reputation of the church you attend was defined by your service in, and to it, what kind of church would the community see? Christianity is much more than simply saying you believe. Christianity is living for, and like, Jesus. We cannot call Him Lord and walk in direct disobedience to Him. This doesn't mean that we are perfect in our carnal flesh. We all struggle with Satan and our depraved nature. What is does mean is that we submit, willingly, to the loving Lordship of our Savior. When we do this, we are yielding our lives as instruments of His using. We no longer live for the satisfying of our sinful self but we live to please Him and fulfill His created purpose in us. The church in Peter's time was enduring hardship and suffering because of their faith in Jesus. Their service to Jesus was intent and steadfast. Today, as then, by God's grace we stand. No matter what happens to us because of our faith in Him, we must remain steadfast and unmovable. Stand firm and focused in His grace. There is no other way to live and there is no other hope!
Rev. Curtis Norris