Am I a member of “older men” (sober-minded, dignified, self-controlled, sound in faith, in love, and in steadfastness, verse 2)? Or younger men (self-controlled, verse 6)? Probably both. Certainly there appears to be some sort of process of sanctification at work here given the large disparity in expectations. If we are not moving forward in our love for God and for our neighbors, we are probably missing something. God’s grace is training us (verse 12) to become the people God expects us to be.
Here we are again with the “submissive to rulers and authorities” (verse 1). Broken the speed limit lately? Yup, he’s talking about us. The more I read the Bible the more I believe that all relationships of authority on earth (even the despotic ones) are meant to train us, so that we understand humility and submission to a holy God. So follow the speed limit.
As for a person who stirs up division, after warning him once and then twice, have nothing more to do with him, knowing that such a person is warped and sinful; he is self-condemned.
Will we say, “we are delivered”, and go on sinning (verse 10)?
I keep finding verses where God accuses Israel of being unashamed in their sin (verse 12). The first step in repentance may be shame — not the shame of the accuser, the shame that says, “I cannot be saved”, but the shame of guilt that says, “I need Christ and His righteousness”.