Daily Lectionary: Isaiah 5:1-25; 1 Peter 2:1-12

Beloved, I urge you as sojourners and exiles to abstain from the passions of the flesh, which wage war against your soul. (1 Peter 2:11)

In the Name + of Jesus. Amen. You are chosen. You are priestly. You are holy. You are treasured by God. You are baptized. You’ve been called out of darkness into the marvelous light of Christ. Once you were not a people; now you are numbered among God’s people. Once you were unmercied; now you are mercied in Christ. You are baptized.

You are a pilgrim, an exile, a wilderness wanderer in this world. “In the world, but not of the world.” You are born “from above,” by water and Spirit, setting you at odds with the unbelieving world, the devil, and even yourself. Yes, you are at odds with yourself. There’s a war going on inside you, a struggle for control between the old man and the new, between Adam and Christ, between Lord Sin and Lord Jesus.

Baptism declares you dead to Sin but alive to God in Christ. You cannot serve two lords. You will hate one and love the other. You cannot serve Sin and Christ. You cannot indulge the old you in Adam and embrace the new you in Christ.

The passions of the flesh wage war against your soul, Peter warns. Your “inner sinner” wants you captive to Sin. Old Adam doesn’t want you to live in freedom. Remember how Eve was deceived? She was enticed by the beauty and deliciousness of the forbidden fruit. She ignored God’s Word. Our passions are deceiving. Corrupted by Sin, they easily lead us down the wrong road.

The world is watching you closely. You’re baptized. You’re a marked child of God. Indulging the “inner sinner” obscures the light of Christ who wants to bless those around you. Fornicating, drunken, pleasure-seeking priests are useless, faithless priests, like the sons of Eli. But you are baptized into Christ. You’re a chosen, holy, treasured priest and child of God. To hell with the old Adam! Let them see who you really are in Christ! In the Name + of Jesus. Amen.

Peace in our hearts, where sinful thoughts are raging, Peace in Your Church, our troubled souls assuaging, Peace when the world its endless war is waging, Peace in your heaven. (LSB 659:4)

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