Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery trial when it comes upon you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you. But rejoice insofar as you share Christ’s sufferings, that you may also rejoice and be glad when his glory is revealed. If you are insulted for the name of Christ, you are blessed, because the Spirit of glory and of God rests upon you. But let none of you suffer as a murderer or a thief or an evildoer or as a meddler. Yet if anyone suffers as a Christian, let him not be ashamed, but let him glorify God in that name. For it is time for judgment to begin at the household of God; and if it begins with us, what will be the outcome for those who do not obey the gospel of God? And “If the righteous is scarcely saved, what will become of the ungodly and the sinner?” Therefore let those who suffer according to God’s will entrust their souls to a faithful Creator while doing good.
1 Peter 4:12–19
            In holy Baptism, God marks us as His own. This blessing changes everything. We are no longer lost but found, no longer dead, but alive. We are also no longer ignored by the devil. In our Baptism the sign of the cross is made on our foreheads and hearts to mark us as ones redeemed by Christ Jesus, and that cross might as well be a bullseye for the devil. Satan wants to destroy everything which God has made good; this is especially true of those washed in the water and Word. For this reason, St. Peter warns us not to be surprised when the “fiery trial” comes our way. Being a Christian is not a ticket to easy street, but guarantees a lifelong battle against the devil, the world, and our own sinful flesh. And on the cross, Christ won that victory for us and gives us the rewards through His Means of Grace. So now when the fiery trials come our way we can rejoice and be glad that we are sharing in Christ’s suffering as His glory is revealed.  
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