22 Having purified your souls by your obedience to the truth for a sincere brotherly love, love one another earnestly from a pure heart, 23 since you have been born again, not of perishable seed but of imperishable, through the living and abiding word of God”(I Peter 1:22-23).
Holy living requires a heart which desires purity. Psalm 119:9 says, ““How can a young man keep his way pure? By living according to Your Word.” You cannot have one without the other. It is cause and effect. Obedience to God and His Word results in purity and holiness of soul and body. This is to be a daily discipline.
The reason for this discipline Peter speaks of in vs. 22 is because God has regenerated our souls, vs. 23. We have been born again (John 3:1-8). God has given us a new birth through the preaching of the gospel (John 1:12-13). The cause for any real change in our lives is because God has given us a spiritual re-birth.
This is not a mortal or physical birth which eventually results in physical death. Rather, this is a spiritual birth which is imperishable (ἄφθαρτος; aphthartos) or immortal. It will never die.
Lest there any confusion as to how this new birth occurs, Peter makes sure we understand that our new birth is only by or through the living and abiding word of God. God’s Word, or truth, is actively alive and eternal (Hebrews 4:12). The Apostle Paul declared that faith in Christ came by the word of Christ (Romans 10:17).
Our entrance into the kingdom of God is solely a work of God. Our obedience once we are a member of the kingdom is a cooperative work between us and God. In either situation, God receives all the glory (Galatians 6:14; I Corinthians 10:31-33).
Soli deo Gloria!