As a Lutheran (or as a Protestant in general) our canon within the canon, the books we read to understand everything else the bible says, are Paul’s letters. That is a generalizing statement and not universal, but most Protestant churches could be said to be more Romans less Rome. That is actually somewhat funny as Peter will affirm those letters but also speak of them as being “hard to understand” and “the ignorant and unstable twist to their destruction”. (2 Peter 3:15-16).
When I saw 1 Peter coming up in the assigned readings, and I saw more of the Gospel of John which to me is more for study and less for preaching, I said that would be interesting or at least different. On the other side of that series, what Peter does is much like his character in the gospels – he lives. He confesses Christ, he denies Christ, he repents. He walks on water, he sinks and is rescued. He pulls a sword and then flees. Peter lives, no mater what happens, he keeps on knowing one big thing – “where would we go, you have the words of eternal life.” Paul thinks about stuff – he ponders the fate and purpose of Israel, he lays out instructions for dealing with authorities, he waxes poetic about love. Peter’s letter talks about living. Be who you are – a chosen people. Live like it – be holy. Live the faith – let it grow up in you to salvation, be living stones. Not all of it is applicable to the context of Christian life in the USA. A big portion of the letter is given over to suffering, and unless you extend that concept to mental anguish, ennui and spiritualizing interpretations, we don’t experience that directly. But if the fiery trial is not universal right now, we still undergo individual trials. We are still called to live the faith.
The rest of this summer on non-festival days (i.e. not Pentecost and Trinity) the assigned epistle readings are from Romans. We revert to form. But, I’ll miss Peter.
Sermon Posts on 1 Peter
Impudence – 1 Peter 1:3-9
Resident Aliens – 1 Peter 1:17-25
Chains of Being – 1 Peter 2:19-25
Paradox Maintained – 1 Peter 2:2-1-
Hope and Holiness – 1 Peter 3:13-22
Satan and Suffering – 1 Peter 4:12-19 , 1 Peter 5:6-11