Wednesday, March 13, 2013

A Little Peculiar?

All scripture references are from the King James Version of the Holy Bible. The Greek meaning of the words mentioned are from Strong's Hebrew Greek Dictionary.

Do you remember that chorus we used to sing in church? We're a Happy People? As I recall it goes something like this;
             We're a happy people yes we are,
             We're a happy people yes we are,
             All day long we sing this song,
             Jesus rights our every wrong,
             We're a happy people yes we are.
then we also sang;
            We are Pentecostal yes we are,
            We are Pentecostal yes we are,
            We've been baptized in Jesus name,
            Spoke in tongues when the Holy Ghost came,
            We are Pentecostal yes we are.
Yep, a little peculiar. Well the Bible does say that we are "a peculiar people." The Apostle Paul wrote in Titus 2:14 that the Lord Jesus, "gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works." And then again the Apostle Peter said in 1st Peter 2:9, "But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light..." The Lord called us out of darkness into his marvellous light? You mean I was in darkness until Jesus found me? He chose me to become one of His sons? We are called into a royal priesthood? You and I are in God's eyes "an holy nation?" Maybe we ought to change the words to that chorus, We're a peculiar people, yes we are!

Before I came to know the Lord Jesus, we used to say that people who acted a little funny, were not funny ha-ha, but funny peculiar. It was meant as an insult, or what my mother used to call "a skunk cabbage bouquet." Let me say that to the world, true Christians may seem a little peculiar, that is funny peculiar. But that is not what the Bible means when it says we are a peculiar people. In Titus 2:14, Paul used a term, "periousios" (in the Greek) which means, "being beyond usual, that is, special (one’s own): - peculiar." Peter used a different word (or words in the Greek), "eis" and "peripoiēsis," which in combination carries the meaning of God's "(figuratively) purpose," of "acquisition (the act or the thing); by extension preservation: - obtain (-ing), peculiar, purchased, possession, saving." In other words, (my understanding) belonging to God!

The church of which all born again believers are a part, (that is born of water by baptism in Jesus name and of the Spirit, by being filled with God's Holy Spirit, See Acts 2:1-4 and Acts 2:38) peculiarly belong to the Lord Jesus. That is what the Apostle Paul surely meant in 1st Corinthians 6:19-20 when he said, "What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's." We belong to the Lord Jesus. He purchased, not just our salvation but ourselves when He gave Himself at Calvary. Oh yes, we're a peculiar people, yes we are!

I'm not quite done. The Old Testament uses the term peculiar also. In Exodus 19:5 God told the people of Israel "...if ye will obey my voice indeed, and keep my covenant, then ye shall be a peculiar treasure unto me above all people: for all the earth is mine..." And in Deuteronomy 26:18, "...the LORD hath avouched thee this day to be his peculiar people, as he hath promised thee, and that thou shouldest keep all his commandments..." And yet again in Psalm 135:4, "For the LORD hath chosen Jacob unto himself, and Israel for his peculiar treasure." 

And when the Lord Jesus returns for His church His peculiar treasure, He said in Malachi 3:16-17, "then they that feared the LORD spake often one to another: and the LORD hearkened, and heard it, and a book of remembrance was written before him for them that feared the LORD, and that thought upon his name. And they shall be mine, saith the LORD of hosts, in that day when I make up my jewels; (interestingly, the Hebrew word for jewels, segûllâh, has as part of it's implication, peculiar treasure) and I will spare them, as a man spareth his own son that serveth him." And according to Ephesians 2:7 The Lord will "in the ages to come... shew the exceeding riches of his grace in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus." He is going to show off His peculiar treasure. I'm looking forward to that day! How about you?

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