Thursday, March 22, 2007

Serving as Stewards of God's Grace

"As each as received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God's varied grace." (1 Peter 4:10, ESV)

The adjective modifying the word grace in this verse is the Greek word poikelos (Gr. ποικίλος). It means variegated, many facetted, "of various sorts." It is the word that the translators of the Septuigent (Greek translation of the Old Testament) used to describe the many colored coat given to Joseph by his father in Genesis 37.

The point of 1 Peter 4:10 "is that God’s grace manifests itself in many different ways." More particularly, Peter is saying that we are stewards of God's many facetted grace, of God's multi-textured grace and that that stewardship is exercised in part through the using of our gifts to serve one another.

God's grace is expressed in his giving us gifts with which we are to serve one another and in the serving of one another we become stewards of his grace.

Take this to heart today. God has gifted you to be a blessing to others. Serve them with your gifts. And know that when you do, you are expressing the mystery of God's grace to them. Know that you are an instrument of and in his hand. Know that you are doing the will of God on earth. Eveyone will be blessed. Including you


HALFMOM said...

It's so funny, in an ironic kind of way, that what we should see as rich and full, in terms of the variations in gifting, is generally seen as threatening or frustrating, isn't it?

We have been studying the parallel passage in Rom 12 in BSF just before PJ taught it last week - an it struck me while doing the lesson that we more often receive others offerings as threats than gifts or sacrifices. What do you think?

Greek is such a lovely language - oh that English had such wonderful ways to express oneself.

Anonymous said...

Dear Pastor,
I have been wanting to ask you this question for some time now, but could not find an appropriate posting to put it under, so I will just ask anyway:
why is it that so many American Christians have their little boys circumcised? Is it a misapplication of Genesis 17:14, which was a commandment for Abraham and his descendents (physical, not spiritual). Or maybe it was a failure to believe 1. Corinthians 7:19?
I oppose routine infant circumcision because it is traumatic for a newborn baby boy to go through, and there is no Biblical basis for it (unless you discount the New Testament). Some people think that there are medical benefits associated with it, but no serious study on that subject came to the conclusion that routine circumcision is recommended across the board.

If I didn't offend you with this, please post your reply.

May God bless you!

ChosenRebel said...

Not sure I can aswer the question why some people do it. I don't know what motivates other people. But here are a couple of reasons that might go through people's minds:
1. Perhaps they simply love the OT and want to follow it closely. Kind of a "what was good for the people of God then is good for my children too."
2. It might be that they invison ministry to Jews and don't want their child to be hindered in any way by the non-circumcised label.
3. It could be that they have fashioned this in their own mind as a way of saying to God that they want to raise their children to love him, simply as a testimony to that desire.

I honestly don't know but I would say that none of these reasons, though I may not agree with them are anti-biblical. An anti-biblical idea would be if to any of these or some other idea they attached the notion that this was REQUIRED by God. That would be anti-biblical, and anti-gospel.

As for the notion of it being harmful--I have my doubts. God would not have used a marking mechanism for the people of God that was harmful, even under the Old Covenant. On the other hand, their are not many studies (Who wants to study this stuff?) but there are some studies that do show some surprising health benefits.