But you are a chosen family, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for God’s own possession, so that you may proclaim the excellencies of Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light. (1 Peter 2:9)
Not only are we a chosen race, a royal priesthood and a holy nation, but look at this: We are a people for God’s own possession.
Again, Peter is thinking of the Old Testament:
So now then, if you will indeed listen to My voice and keep My covenant, then you shall be My treasured possession among all the peoples, for all the earth is Mine. (Exodus 19:5)
The people whom I formed for Myself
Will recount My praise. (Isaiah 43:21)
Israel of old was also a people possessed by the Lord.
Now, let me give you just a little insight into the word “possessed.” It means to acquire or to purchase. It means to purchase for a price. We are God’s own possession because He paid the price. And what was the price? His own blood:
Who gave Himself for us that He might redeem us from all lawlessness, and purify for Himself a people for His own possession, zealous for good works. (Titus 2:14)
God, by the sacrifice of Christ, paid the price to buy us back. And so we belong to Him. I can’t think of anything more wonderful than to be the personal possession of the living Christ, God’s personal possession. Listen to what Jesus says:
Truly, truly, I say to you, he who does not enter by the door into the fold of the sheep, but climbs up some other way, he is a thief and a robber. But he who enters by the door is a shepherd of the sheep. To him the doorkeeper opens, and the sheep hear his voice, and he calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. (John 10:1-3)
I am the good shepherd, and I know My own and My own know Me. (John 10:14)
I used to sit in seminary chapel and sing one of my very favorite hymns, “I am His and He is mine.” From the earliest years of my seminary days, I have always had a special love for the thought that I belong to Christ.
We are the possession of the Lord. We are His own. We belong to Him. What a glorious privilege!
But there’s another privilege in this verse; look at how it says “that you may proclaim the excellencies of Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light.”
Darkness is the disastrous state of sin. It’s the state of the unregenerate who are under the darkness of the prince of darkness, Satan himself.
Darkness speaks of two things: ignorance and immorality. In other words, there is an intellectual darkness and there is a moral darkness. Intellectual darkness means you cannot see truth. Moral darkness means you cannot see righteousness. You do not know what is right and you cannot do what is right.
“But,” says Peter, “you have been called out of darkness.” This is another of our privileges, to have been called out of darkness into light.
Now, what does it mean that we’re now in the light? It means that we have intellectual understanding and we have moral character. We not only know what’s right, we can do what’s right. There is both truth and righteousness, knowledge and obedience.
We have been rescued from not knowing what God wants and not being able to do it. And this transition, I believe, is sometimes easy for us to forget. The longer we are Christians, the less we think about what it was like before we knew Christ. But the transition is remarkable.
This post is based on a sermon Dr. MacArthur preached in 1989, titled “The Believer’s Privileges, Part 6: Separation, Possession, Illumination… .” In addition to serving as the pastor of Grace Community Church and the voice of Grace to You, Dr. MacArthur is the chancellor of The Master’s University in Santa Clarita, Calif. You can learn more about TMU at masters.edu.
|cookielawinfo-checkbox-analytics||11 months||This cookie is set by GDPR Cookie Consent plugin. The cookie is used to store the user consent for the cookies in the category "Analytics".|
|cookielawinfo-checkbox-functional||11 months||The cookie is set by GDPR cookie consent to record the user consent for the cookies in the category "Functional".|
|cookielawinfo-checkbox-necessary||11 months||This cookie is set by GDPR Cookie Consent plugin. The cookies is used to store the user consent for the cookies in the category "Necessary".|
|cookielawinfo-checkbox-others||11 months||This cookie is set by GDPR Cookie Consent plugin. The cookie is used to store the user consent for the cookies in the category "Other.|
|cookielawinfo-checkbox-performance||11 months||This cookie is set by GDPR Cookie Consent plugin. The cookie is used to store the user consent for the cookies in the category "Performance".|