1 Peter 1:13 Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and hope to the end for the grace that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ;
Introduction – Wherefore (As a Result of)
Peter has told us thus far that all our hope rests on the finished work of Jesus. (The shedding of blood, death & resurrection) Only through Christ can we have access to God. As a result of being saved from destruction we should honor God by our obedience.
To start Peter uses a phrase they would be very familiar with “girding up the loins”; this was a practice of preparing to go to work. A person would take their long garment, gather it together and tie or bind it so they could move more freely. Today we might say “get your work clothes on”. Peter is saying now that Jesus has saved you it is time to get to work.
Verse 13 – A Command and an Action
We start by preparing the mind. We have talked about this before; the mind is where all actions begin. Peter wants us to prepare to work for Jesus by first getting our mind on what we are doing. We give this same advice in everyday life. When we see someone make a simple mistake we might say “you need to focus and get your mind on your work”. This is exactly what Peter is expressing; in our labor for Jesus we need to get our mind on our work.
He adds the words “be sober”. This phrase has more than one meaning and unfortunately for us the first thing that comes to our mind is not what Peter is saying. Sober, to us, usually means not drunk. The use of the word here in the Greek means to be calm, cool and collected. We are to strive to be temperate, not having wild mood swings. If we are falling short here then it is time for us to get busy; this is the goal we are to be laboring for. Some of us might have a little work to do, and for others, we might have a lot of work to do.
Hope to the End
The next part of verse 13 is “hope to the end”. There are two distinct thoughts here: first is the word “hope” and the second part is “to the end” relating to perseverance. Hope is a state of mind. How do we see the world? Are we hopeful or doubtful? Do we see the good in things or do we just see despair? Do we allow our faith in Jesus to pick us up or do we just shake our head and say “what’s the use”? The first part, “hope”, is a state of mind; the second part, “to the end”, is a continuing action exercising hope. We will finish this thought next time.