It is an early misty morning in our home in Orlando, Florida and Nathan Hale, my brindled Basenji is curled in the chair beside me. I have a fresh cup of creamed coffee and admire the sun’s rays reflecting off the neighbor’s many-armed oak. The crepe myrtles are in pink and white bloom, and the mosquitos, though small this summer, rise in great clouds of persistence, the rains coming early with subtropical humidity constant.
First Peter 4:7-11 opens on my lap and eight admonishments are given by Peter for preparing: “The End of ALL things is near.” It was as real to them and perhaps much more so, 2,000 years ago, as it is for us this day, except we are seeing the biblical and global signs blossoming now.
- Be clear minded;
- Be self-controlled;
- Love each other deeply;
- Offer hospitality without grumbling;
- Use your gifts to serve others;
- Faithfully administer God’s grace in its various forms;
- Speak…as one speaking the very words of God;
- Serve…with the strength God provides so that in ALL things, God may be praised through Jesus Christ.
Here are eight instructions to live out for we kingdom warriors, of God’s will in daily living. How very many more we have added to the daily tasks of life, crowding out and, in many cases, extinguishing how Christ expects His kingdom to be advanced by the simplified lifestyle He has set down. We choose our own stresses.
Early believers lived with overt persecution and entertained no consideration of NOT being in the last days of human governance on earth. Yet, societies have continued up from the past eras as I write these words, marked with some rather horrific scenarios.
Millions have been slaughtered by man’s caprice for narcissistic gain and power, just from the last century, far more than all the wars combined in centuries past. Death and Hell will ride the pale horse of Revelation 6 when the fourth Seal is opened, but it has begun. Hell for the unsaved, rides right behind Death, scooping millions into its voracious mouth of finality. Death takes the saved children of God creating the martyrs of Seal Five, caught in the global evil of man and Satan’s wrath.
We are given eight simple attitudes to live out now. Some of them will keep us sane; the rest will keep us rightly related to other believers on their high and low journeys. The end for both is to bring an intimate awareness to our God which, in obvious ways, benefits all who are embracing Him.
There is nothing mentioned of self-sufficiency such as gold savings accounts, retirement stashes, crypto currency, paid mortgages, higher education, social culture insanity, or worldly ambitions being satisfied. These are complications of a money-crazed idolized society which must own things and forget people.
Just to be ‘clear-minded’ encompasses an enormous set of parameters including the obtainment of Truth, learning from historic blunders, and failed conquests. We recognize error in doctrine and false prophetic podcasting, the in-your-face perversions, and indulged medications, or witchcraft—passed off without guile. That state of being clear-minded begins molding the pure, sensitive heart crafted within us by the Holy Spirit.
When ALL other elements of the soul as the emotions, double-mindedness, and persistent self-will are subdued, the soul is able to emerge. We are to be focused thinkers, not tainted or blinded by inner or outside factors. What an awesome task in our Laodicean generation to be ‘clear-minded’.