GRACE TO SUFFER FOR CHRIST
A hope that lasts forever
1 Peter 1:1-12
Jerry A Collins
v What makes our salvation a precious thing to us?
v What is the Trinity’s role in our salvation?
v What means does God use to reveal and then commend faith?
That is ‘out of this world’. It is unbelievably marvelous to know that! You know the feeling. The first time I went to Cedar point or when I graduated from school or won the championship or got the job. There are moments when this is ‘out of this world’ is the only way we can explain what we are enjoying or what possibilities now await us! So, too, when we view our salvation from many vantage points that it has. We marvel at what it is that the Lord has provided for us in this thing we call our ‘salvation’. It has many advantages for us and Peter identifies some of those as He begins his message to us in this book. We have a new birth that supplies us with an imperishable inheritance in the future that God guarantees for us even while we are still here facing trials that test our faith and increases the inheritance we will have when all is revealed in heaven. The occasion for this letter is given in the first two verses.
1. He was known as Simon but not always Peter. Simon speaks of what he was and Peter of what he became. Simon speaks of his old nature and Peter his new nature. He was an apostle personally called, sent, and gifted, for that responsibility by Jesus Christ Himself.
The recipients are described as: a. aliens
repeated again in
to indicate temporary residents. So with permanent residence in heaven xians are viewed as strangers in this world. Our
citizenship is not here among lost people even tho we
must live in their midst. b. scattered in several places 1b. They were located in modern-day
1. IT IS A SALVATION WHICH GIVES US HOPE
Observation: 1 Peter 1:3-5
3 We can say many good things about our God the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ not just any God. God has given us new birth. People can do nothing to gain this status. It transforms us from objects of wrath to recipients of great mercy. This is what has caused us to be born again. This new birth results in a living hope based on the living resurrected Christ. So our hope is sure, certain, real as opposed to something fake, unreal, empty or false! It is as certain as the fact of Jesus resurrection. Our hope is alive because Jesus is alive.
4 So here is an elaboration of that hope we have in Christ and specific content as to what it actually promises to us. It is an inheritance that cannot be destroyed by hostile forces, spoiled like overripened fruit of fade in color (can never perish, spoil or fade). This inheritance is kept watch over in heaven so our possession of it is ensured. None of our earthly treasures have the same guarantee—in fact Jesus said that they will fade, wear out, rust and be stolen by others.
5 While our inheritance is reserved for us in heaven we are preserved for it on earth. Every xian is protected or shielded by God’s power so that we can build into that inheritance while we live here on earth with it’s trials and difficulties. So no one can say that they could not do so but by faith in God can persevere and be rewarded 1 Cor 3:13-15. Ultimately I will have an inheritance not just a ticket into heaven. Now God tells me to invest in that inheritance with obedience and faith. While God provides His power in my life it requires faith as the means thru which God’s power is supplied. It will be fully revealed then in the last time at Jesus return.
2. IT IS A SALVATION WHICH BRINGS
Observation: 1 Peter 1:6-9
6 So put your knowledge of this hope of an inheritance of salvation into practice. This truth should cause your to rejoice greatly. And this joy must be despite being distressed by various trials of life for
the moment. It is not going to last. So see thru your difficulties and discern the hand of God in them strengthening you and encouraging you as you live by faith. This suffering is temporary business and it will never be so in heaven.
7 So again we are moved beyond just the moment to the end like vs 5 where we are to keep our eyes while suffering. Don’t lose your equilibrium. Keep it all in perspective—our joy and expectation of future honor, praise and glory. This emphasis plays down our brief and momentary and sometimes necessary grief. God is on a divine search for that pure, genuine part of our faith purged thru the fires of trails. God tests in order to know—to find the reality of our faith (Gen ). The He commends it and rewards it with commendation, reputation and exaltation. A judge must sift all of the evidence and find the truth. God sifts us and finds what He can really call the genuine item and praise it. Only grief exposes what is genuine. And all of it will be so at the day Jesus is fully revealed to all.
8 So our hope not fixed on some abstract knowledge but tho we have not seen him, our love for Him and our faith in Him fills us with joy that we can revel in anticipation of what is our in Him. Stay focused on this
9 Our salvation is past in sense of being given a new birth vs 3; it is present in sense of presently being shielded by God; it is future in sense of an inheritance that awaits me. Since each day brings me closer to the final day and trials produce a pure faith that contributes to my inheritance, I am closer now to receiving it than before and I can rejoice in this since this is really what it is all about.
3. IT IS A SALVATION WHICH IS WITNESSED AND DESIRED
Observation: 1 Peter 10-12
10-12b The prophets in their own writings longed to participate in this salvation brot during this period enquiring about it’s time. They pondered how a glorious Messiah could be involved in suffering (Mt ). The prophets did not fully understand all that the HS authored thru them Isa 53; Isa 11. Our privilege is we actually live in fulfillment of what they foresaw.
12c Even angels bend over to see—same word in Lk 24:12 disciples stooping to peer into tomb. Suggest an intense interest of angels in our experience of salvation in Jesus.
1. We must learn to fully appreciate what we have in salvation. Implications here for our building into our inheritance.
2. We must live with eternity in view in daily life. Stay focused on this as we decide in life.
3. We must see all trials in our lives as tests of our faith designed by God to determine depth of faith. Our rewards based on this.