1 Peter – Chapter One LIV

by Ed Urzi

“for ‘All flesh is like grass and all its glory like the flower of grass. The grass withers, and the flower falls, but the word of the Lord remains forever.’ And this word is the good news that was preached to you” (1 Peter 1:24-25 ESV).

The final verses of 1 Peter chapter one remind us that life can pass very quickly. Perhaps this is why Psalm 39:4 tells us, “Show me, O LORD, my life’s end and the number of my days; let me know how fleeting is my life…” In addition, Psalm 144:4 later tells us, “Man is like a breath; his days are like a fleeting shadow.”

The New Testament book of James echoes that thought with a pointed observation: “What do you know about tomorrow? How can you be so sure about your life? It is nothing more than mist that appears for only a little while before it disappears” (James 4:14 CEV). As one paraphrase of our text from 1 Peter 1:24 puts it, “…our natural lives will fade as grass does when it becomes all brown and dry. All our greatness is like a flower that droops and falls” (TLB).

While we may have a reasonable expectation of a long life, there are certainly no guarantees. While this may be a depressing reality, we can find encouragement in the fact that the choices we make today will influence the events of tomorrow. Therefore, the investments we make with our resources  hold great relevance for ourselves and others.

In light of this, we would do well to take an eternal perspective regarding this passage, one that recognizes that our true significance lies in our eternal relationship with Christ. Jesus spoke of that eternal perspective when He said, “Store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal” (Matthew 6:20).

A person who invests in the material things of today must leave those things behind when he or she passes from this life. But those who have accepted Christ can secure things of real, eternal value with the following investments…

“They are to do good, to be rich in good works, to be generous and ready to share, thus storing up treasure for themselves as a good foundation for the future, so that they may take hold of that which is truly life” (1 Timothy 6:18-19 ESV).

Peter will go on to address the practical effect of that eternal mindset in the opening verses of 1 Peter chapter two.