Against the stream
Fergus' preached a great sermon on 1 Peter 4 on Sunday.
He said, 'A Christian is swimming against the stream and so everything is difficult.'
Isn't that true if we are living the Christian life? The old illustration holds true, that it isn't until the light is turned on in the cellar that you see all the cobwebs and dust. Before that you were in blissful ignorance.
And of course, when we become a friend of the Lord Jesus, it is like the light is turned on and suddenly we start to get a sense that things are not right in us and they aren't right in the world.
Drawing on chapter 4:1 'Therefore since Christ suffered in the body, arm yourselves also with the same attitude...'
Fergus paraphrased this as, 'Why should we expect anything different from our master?' Because Jesus turned his face against sin, he felt its power attacking him. We will feel the same.
I find that in some ways being a Christian gets harder, rather than easier, as the years go on.
But, as he reminded us in the sermon, there will be a time when the pressure is lifted off. v7 'The end of all things is near.'
What good news! The end, or the future judgement (as mentioned in v17) dictates to us how we are to live.
Jesus is with us now and as the CYFA study I am preparing reminds us, Jesus will not let us be tempted beyond that which we can cope with (1 Corinthians 10:13). The glorious king of the universe is with us and one day the pressure will be lifted off, when the end comes or we go to be with him.