In 1 Peter 1:13, Peter tells Christians, based on the fact that God is a God of kept promises, that they are to confidently and fully set their hope on God’s future grace.
In order to grasp the magnitude of Peter’s command we need to look specifically at two words, which are grace and hope. Then we will look at what hope in future grace should produce in us, namely, holy living.
The context tells us God’s grace will be given to us at the revelation, or return of Jesus Christ. This means God has given us a measure of His grace now, but it is not all the grace He will pour out on us. When Christ returns, God will pour a final measure of grace on us bringing us into a state of glorification. The body of death Paul talks about that hinders him in living completely for Christ will be put away and we will receive our glorified bodies. Sin will no longer reign in our members, rather, we will be perfect.
So we see: (1) Our final salvation is completed in the future, at the return of Jesus Christ. (2) It is God’s grace and nothing else that will provide us with eternal salvation. (3) It is God’s future grace we are to place our hope in.
Now that we understand we are to place our hope in God’s future grace and what that grace will accomplish for us, namely, eternal salvation. We need to look at hope, understanding it from a biblical perspective.
The Bible defines hope differently than our modern secular society. Hope in modern English has the idea of a wish that is uncertain.
For example, if we are going to a ball game this weekend with our family, we may hope it does not rain. We don’t know if it will or will not rain, but our wish is that it will not.
So then, hope in modern English carries the idea of wishfulness, but not certainty.
In biblical terms, hope is defined differently. Instead of a wishful thought, hope is certain. When Peter tells us to put our hope in the grace that will be poured out on us at the return of Christ, he is telling us something we can be confident in. Jesus’ return and the grace that will be poured out on us then is certain. Meaning Christ’s return and the grace we will receive at His return is not a wishful thought, it will happen.
Knowing what God’s grace will accomplish for us, and that He is a God of kept promises, means we should fully place our hope in God’s future grace, knowing for certain His grace will be poured out on us at the revelation of Jesus Christ.
Hope in God’s Future Grace Leads to Holy Living
Our hope in God’s future grace is not just the key to heaven, but it also is the key to holy living. If we don’t hope in God’s future grace alone, trusting in faith that He will pour out that final measure of grace on us at Jesus’ return, then living a holy life will not follow.
A holy life will not follow because it is pointless. If we don’t believe God will provide us with eternal life, then why would we live according to His commands? In other words, if the promises of God are not more satisfying to us than sin, why would we not sin?
All of this means that before we can live holy lives, it is important that our hope be in God alone, that we believe life with God for eternity is better than sinning now.
So I must ask: Do you hope in God alone, realizing He will provide you with more satisfaction than sin ever will? If you don’t, then you will not live a holy life.