But the word of the Lord endureth for ever. And this is the word which by the gospel is preached unto you. 1 Peter 1:25
Here at the endÂ 1 Peter 1, in which the Apostle has surveyed many important truths, not the least of which being our new birth byÂ the incorruptible seed of the word of Godâ€“logos theos (1 Pt. 1:23). His concluding statement of this section is that man & his glory are temporary, and will whither like the grass, but the word of the Lord endureth for ever. This is referencing Isaiah’s words from Isa. 40:7-8.
Our redemption is not procured by earthly treasure; for, all things found in this world are like vapor that will soon vanish. [epq-quote align=”align-right”]Our redemption is not procured by earthly treasure; for, all things found in this world are like vapor that will soon vanish.[/epq-quote] This is a recapitulation of truth found in Jesus’ parable of the wise and foolish builder (Mt. 7:24-27): build on sand, your building will be swept away, build on the Rock of Ages, you will stand firm. Peter reminds us that the Lord’s word endures forever, and it is Gospel preaching that brings the word unto us, that we might be redeemed.
I’ve always loved the Greek word Peter uses here: Îµá½Î±Î³Î³ÎµÎ»Î¯Î¶Ï‰Â euaggelizÅ. It is the verbal form of the noun (Îµá½Î±Î³Î³ÎÎ»Î¹Î¿Î½Â euaggelion), which we usually translate as “gospel” or “good tidings”. Peter says that in order to be redeemed, the everlasting word of the Lord must “gospel” you. In essence, while the Gospel is certainly an objective noun, it is a noun that demandsÂ verbal action.Â A baseball bat is a noun, but it is a noun that is intended for swinging.
We need to be “gospel-ed” by the word of God, and we need to “gospel-ize” this world. It will not do to simply be able to define the Gospel, it is something that must be put into action in our own lives and families, and which we are to bring to bear upon the world around us. To reiterate, Webster’s 1828 dictionary can provide us with the correct definition for a broad-sword:
BROAD-SWORD,Â nounÂ [broad and sword.] A sword with a broad blade, and a cutting edge.
But if you’re going into combat, you need more than a mere definition, you need to noun itself, and then wield it. This is what Peter is getting at. The truth of God’s enduring Word is that which “gospel-ed” us, thus redeeming us, and by implication it is that which we are to go forth with, and “gospel-ize” the nations.