January 15, 2012

Perishable versus Imperishable – Don R. Patton

Posted in Uncategorized at 6:00 am by sranderson0103

There are profound implications in Peter’s statement that we “have been born again not of seed which is perishable but imperishable, that is, through the living and enduring word of God.” (I Peter 1:23).

We have all watched magnificent roses drop their lovely fragrant petals, begin to droop, wither and dry to an ugly, blackened, brittle shell. It is interesting that Paul describes the daughter whose father decided not give her in marriage, as one who was “passed her youth” (I Cor.7:36), using a word which literally means passed her “bloom.” Like it or not, this is the way the world works.

Everything in the physical creation is decaying and dying. In fact, we know that one day “the heavens will pass away with a roar and the elements will be destroyed with intense heat, and the earth and its works will be burned up.” (II Peter 3:10). What will that new Mercedes be worth then?

Even the very seeds which transmit life are “perishable” seed (I Peter 1:23), and Paul describes all mankind as “corruptible man” (Romans 1:23).

True science has demonstrated that this universal principle of decay is one of the most basic laws governing the universe—the second law of thermodynamics. Our own experience teaches effectively that everything is unrelentingly going downhill.

However, even in this degenerating, perishing world, some things are imperishable. God Himself is the “incorruptible God” (Romans 1:23).

Peter says this is true of “the living and enduring word of God.” (I Peter 1:23). Even though “heaven and earth shall pass away,” the words of Christ “will not pass away” (Matthew 24:35). When we face the Lord in judgment, we may wish His word had perished with the rest of the world but that word is imperishable. It will still be there to judge us. (John 12:48).

It is reassuring in this perishing world to know that our eternal salvation in Christ is accomplished by that which is imperishable. Peter said “you were not redeemed with perishable things like silver or gold from your futile way of life inherited from your forefathers, but with precious blood, as of a lamb unblemished and spotless, the blood of Christ.” (I Peter 1:18-19).

Painful experience educates us to the fact that man made promises fail. Earnest assurances, guilt-edged guarantees often prove useless. How comforting to know that He “has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to obtain an inheritance which is imperishable and undefiled and will not fade away, reserved in heaven for you, ” (I Peter 1:3,4).

Long hard hours of diligent effort may produce a fleeting benefit, “a perishable wreath,” but not Christian labor. Our crown is “imperishable.” (I Corinthians 9:25).

Finally, these dying bodies will themselves be redeemed, “the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed. For this perishable must put on the imperishable, and this mortal must put on immortality.” (I Corinthians 15:52,53).



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