1 Peter 1:3 – Blessed [gratefully praised and adored] be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His abundant and boundless mercy has caused us to be born again [that is, to be reborn from above—spiritually transformed, renewed, and set apart for His purpose] to an ever-living hope and confident assurance through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,
I love this passage in the Amplified Bible, “who according to His abundant and boundless mercy has caused us to be born again”. His mercy is described as abundant and boundless. In other words His mercy is more than sufficient and it is unending. There is a mercy that lasts forever provided for us through the death of Christ. Peter is starting his letter trying to describe something that cannot be grasped by intellect alone. He says we have been born again according to God’s boundless mercy. What does that even mean? It means that the resurrection life of Jesus Himself has entered into us and changed us and given us an eternal hope. What we have received not only brings forgiveness and eternal life in heaven, this mercy radically transforms our very nature. We are born of His Spirit. Here is how Matthew Henry describes this verse.
“The reasons that oblige us to this duty of blessing God, which are comprised in his abundant mercy. All our blessings are owing to God’s mercy, not to man’s merit, particularly regeneration. He hath begotten us again, and this deserves our thanksgiving to God, especially if we consider the fruit it produces in us, which is that excellent grace of hope, and that not such a vain, dead, perishing hope as that of worldlings and hypocrites, but a lively hope, a living, strong, quickening, and durable hope, as that hope must needs be that has such a solid foundation as the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.”
If anybody knew about mercy it was Peter. He felt he was without hope after he had denied that he ever knew the Lord the night Jesus was arrested. After all he had seen how did it come to this. He had been in a three year swirl of miracles, he had been in the presence of the anointing on the Anointed One Himself, and sat under the greatest teaching of all time and yet…. Peter still managed to botch everything up that night when it seemed to matter most. That’s why Peter is writing about ‘abundant and boundless mercy’. He had lived by the power of that mercy for years and loved offering to whosoever will.