Purity and Reverence

By Scarlett Stough

Too often we think wisdom and intelligence is revealed in the cleverness of our arguments or in the ability to persuade others toward our beliefs. If we can just use the right words, the right argument at just the right moment, our spouse, or friend, or opponent must concede we are right. But the old saying, “Actions speak louder than words,” is an acknowledgment that words often fail to achieve the result we want.

In the first century, when women had a status similar to slaves and children in the Roman Empire, Peter counseled wives to let their attitude and behavior be the means of winning over their husbands instead of trying to argue them into believing as they did.

Wives, in the same way [See 2:18-25] be submissive to your husbands so that, if any of them do not believe the word, they may be won over without words by the behavior of their wives, when they see the purity and reverence of your lives (I Peter 3:1-2.)

Whatever your stand is on the relative roles of husbands and wives, submissiveness, purity and reverence are still qualities every Christian is called upon to exhibit (Ephesians 5:21.) This passage in I Peter is advice to women with husbands who do not believe in Jesus as the Son of God. It is good advice for anyone who desires some one in particular to turn to God through Christ.

Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity. Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone (Colossians 4:5-6.) [Author’s emphasis.)

People see what we do and whether or not we are living up to the Way of life Jesus taught (I Peter 2:12; Proverbs 20:11.) They are more likely to be impressed by our actions than our words.

I, wisdom, dwell together with prudence; I possess knowledge and discretion. To fear the LORD is to hate evil; I hate pride and arrogance, evil behavior and perverse speech (Proverbs 8:12-13.)

If you desire to be wise, the purity of our attitude and actions count more than our words.

Volume 11 Issue 7 | Notes from Nancy | Women in Christ Commentary | Bible Study Guide | Abundance of the Heart | Exhortation | Book Review

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