What is my salvation based on? Am I really doing good works for God’s glory or for man’s? Could I ever turn my back on the Christian faith or God’s word? I believe if we answer these types of questions honestly to examine ourselves, our honest answers, actions and motivations will reveal a lot about us. But the godly knowledge to help us answer these questions correctly is often lacking in churches today. The words of Peter in 1 Peter 1 tell us why people forsake Christ and are destroyed for lack of knowledge (Hos. 4:6) and perish without godly vision (Prov. 29:18).
18 Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers;
19 But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot: …
22 Seeing ye have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit unto unfeigned love of the brethren, see that ye love one another with a pure heart fervently:
23 Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever.
24 For all flesh is as grass, and all the glory of man as the flower of grass. The grass withereth, and the flower thereof falleth away:
25 But the word of the Lord endureth for ever. And this is the word which by the gospel is preached unto you.
Verse 18 is what we should know, but there are people who believe salvation actually comes from corruptible things, such as water in the baptismal pool, the bread and wine at the communion (eucharist) table, man-made denominations and religious groups, or the acquisition of silver and gold and other material things in their prosperity gospel. Instead of being redeemed from their vain lifestyles passed down by man-made traditions of their predecessors, they actually cling to meaningless traditions and promote them as if they’re redeemed by them.
Although Peter warns us that all flesh is like grass and man’s glory is like flowers sprouting up from grass in that they eventually fade away and die out because they are corruptible, so many in religious circles glory in flesh and glorify humans (like the televangelists they follow) despite this warning. At the end of the day, they base religion on corruptible things instead of God’s incorruptible things.
My flesh would love to get caught up in those corruptible things. However, with the help of the Holy Spirit I pray for the strength in my spirit man to shun the corruptible things so I can hang on for my dear eternal life to the precious blood of Christ which redeemed me. I hang on for my dear eternal life to obeying God’s uncompromising truth through the Spirit in genuine love for my spiritual siblings. I hang on for my dear eternal life to God’s incorruptible, everlasting word because I was born again by it. I must consider the glory of man as withering and worthless. If my life is based on incorruptible things like God’s word, I know my new life and new nature in Christ is also incorruptible (1 Cor. 15:53-54).