We are light in the Lord; therefore, we are to be light. We are to be holy as our heavenly Father is holy. That begs the question, how is our Father holy? How are we to emulate Him? We are to be set apart, internally and externally consistent, and at odds with evil. Growing in the knowledge of God will enable us to apprehend two things: a deeper understanding of holiness, and a more profound grasp of our absolute need for Jesus Christ.
Be holy, for I am holy. (1 Peter 1:16, NKJV)
For what are we to prepare our minds, focus our attention, and direct our steps (1:13)? Peter picks up a theme with which he began his letter – obedience. He urges us on “as obedient children.” At the outset, Peter informed us that we were chosen for obedience (1:2). Now, after reminding us that we are heirs in Christ, he addresses us as obedient children.
Peter fleshes out this obedience in two ways. Negatively, he insists that we no longer live in a manner that characterized us prior to our conversion to Christ. Positively, Peter urges us to live consistently with our new life in Christ, being “holy in all our conduct.”
This before-and-after thread runs throughout Peter’s letters. Living out our newness in Christ brings glory to God and prompts others to see our good behavior and give glory to our Father in heaven.