1 Peter 1:1-6 (Go to this verse :: Verse pop-up)
This was written in about AD 65, and Peter is having to remind people who they are. We have to be reminded of this because we are a very special people to God. Peter focuses in on the term "election," which is the very ground of consolation or encouragement because it means that God knows us. What kind of a gift is that? We are not a faceless blob to Him. He knows us personally and is watching over our lives!
The word election means "those sought out." God sought us out! Thus believing, understanding, and taking action on this truth is a major part of our hope, that is, that we are indeed special and known by God.
Peter also uses the term "foreknowledge," which intensifies "election." When the two of them are taken together in this context, it indicates that God not only foresaw us, but that He caused our relationship to occur because we would have never found Him on our own. To this, the apostle then adds "sanctification." In this case, it means, not merely set apart, but dedicated for obedience, which Peter mentions. This suggests that God knows us, not merely because He wants to save us, but because He wants us to obey Him.
Taken together, these three terms indicate that we have been given a tremendous gift that not many people on earth have received. It is a humbling responsibility because every gift carries with it the responsibility to make proper use of it in service to God's purpose.
What Peter is dealing with in this first chapter is why we can have hope: because we are elected by God. He sought us out purposely to make us acquainted with Him. The Father is the Author of an act of mercy by which we are given a sure hope of being brought into our inheritance. We should be conscious of this without being maudlin or self-righteous.
Peter writes that we have been begotten to a "living hope." It is a living hope because Christ is alive, and in God's behalf, He will absolutely carry out His God-given responsibility to us to bring us into His Kingdom.
John W. Ritenbaugh
Trumpets Is a Day of Hope