Wednesday, May 13, 2009

1 Peter 2:15-16 -- On Wise Freedom

“For so is the will of God, that with well doing ye may put to silence the ignorance of foolish men:
As free, and not using your liberty for a cloke of maliciousness, but as the servants of God.”
1 Peter 2:15-16

This is interesting stuff. The first part is explaining why God asks us to obey ordinances of men: so that no one has any reason to condemn us.  I love the wording here... it is basically saying that we're helping Good triumph over evil, just by staying within the law. :)

In the next verse, I love how it is pointed out to us that we should use our freedom wisely. I think too often we think of freedom as the power to do whatever we want... and so it is, to a certain extent, but a better way to think about it is the power to choose who we serve... the power to choose our own consequences, as part of choosing the action. Sure, we are free to go beat up someone... but we're not free to choose whether we get caught and thrown into jail or not, or the extended consequences of having a criminal record and a felony. Even if we don't get caught, there are consequences with God. 

We shouldn't use our freedom to harm or humiliate others. If we use our freedom wisely, to serve God, then we're choosing some pretty good consequences, as well as choosing some guilt-free happiness in the short term. :)

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