The English language can be so confusing. We have carrot, carat and karate? The first is a vegetable, the second a system of weight for diamonds and the third relates to the purity of gold. Twenty-four karat is considered pure gold, but is so soft it is not practical for jewelry making. 18 karat
gold (18K) contains 18 parts of gold and 6 parts of another metal. The smaller the karat value the less pure the gold.
Look at what Bevere states and apply this to our spiritual lives. "Refined gold is soft and pliable, free from corrosion or other substances. It is when gold is mixed with other metals (copper, iron, nickel, and so on) that it becomes hard, less pliable, and more corrosive…Immediately we see the parallel: A pure heart is like pure gold-soft, tender, and pliable. Hebrews 3:13 states that hearts are hardened through the deceitfulness of sin!
In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while, if need be,
you have been grieved by various trials, that the genuineness of your faith,
being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it tested by fire,
may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ.
1 Peter 1:6-7
The fiery furnaces of life can make us shine brighter and increase our purity!
I don't know about y'all, but I am only two days into this study and amazed at how quickly I take offense at the words and actions of others. I'm thinking back to a recent time when I was "offended" in a place I thought God had sent me. Leaving in my car, I issued up this inquiry to God. "What was your purpose in putting me through that?" I kid you not, His reply, "To refine you like gold." Then today he has me studying this lesson. That's how the Lord works on me. :-) The next step was for me to remember how much God loves the people who offend me and for me to love them as Jesus does through the power of the Holy Spirit.
"One way the enemy keeps a person in an offended sate is to keep the offense hidden, cloaked with pride. Pride will keep you from admitting your true condition. Pride causes you to view yourself as a victim. Because you believe you were treated unjustly, you hold back forgiveness. Though your heart's true condition is hidden from you, it is not hidden from God. Being mistreated does not give you permission to hold on to an offense. Two wrongs do not make a right." John Bevere
Anoint your eyes with eye salve, that you may see.
Let's pray the 1 Peter verse into our lives.
Father, because of your great love for us, we can greatly rejoice that though we are grieved by various trials, we know there is benefit to the testing of our faith and it is that faith which allows us to persevere until the revelation of Christ! What a day of rejoicing that will be! Give us hearts which are willing to be filled with Your Holy Spirit and strengthen for the day! Give us eyes that keep their focus upward and in the Word, watching for your guidance and provision. Check our hearts and keep them from taking up and offense. In Jesus' Name, Amen
I was reading Jim Daly's post on Focus on the Family and he related how not only did Christ not take offense when the soldiers and high priests came into the garden to arrest him, but he healed the ear of the high priest's servant, Malchus, when Peter cut it off. Daly writes he thinks Peter was actually going for Malchus' throat and missed!