Sermons on 1 Peter
The New Testament offers a few curious statements about suffering. Paul, for example, embraced his suffering while Peter even told people they should rejoice in their suffering. We, I think, would (rightly) agree that following Jesus would include helping persecuted people, so what are we to do with Paul and Peter’s comments? This lesson will consider suffering’s place in the new identity God gives to us through Jesus and its place within our lives today.
Peter wrote that Christians are created for the purpose of loving one another (1 Peter 1:22). This lesson will continue to explore the purposes Jesus gives to our lives by considering the purpose of love and the way Jesus’ example and teachings shape the love that should define us
1 Peter 2:9 — Covenants play a major role in the Bible’s narrative but do not, in my experiences, have much – if any – role in our day-to-day lives. While we might not commonly talk about covenants, our daily lives do include binding agreements (marriages, contracts, loans, etc.) that offer a way for us to begin thinking about the Bible’s emphasis upon covenants. This lesson will draw on those insights to help us think about God’s covenant with Israel in the Old Testament, the special mission it gave to the nation, and how the New Testament extends that same mission to the church today.
Scripture: 1 Peter 2:9-12 Christ is the center of the gospel, but that in no way makes the church unimportant or optional. Fellowship is a word frequently used to describe the special bond that exists between us, God and each other. The Greek word translated “fellowship” (koinonia) refers to what it is that we have in common that makes the church a special community. The idea of community suggests the closeness of relationships and the life of many members acting in community, rather than the simple faithfulness of an individual Christian.
1 Peter 3:18-22 – When we follow the context, we can often understand even the most difficult passages. Peter wrote to encourage suffering Christians for whom righteous living didn’t seem to be rewarded, and those who persecuted them seemed to thrive. Christians are encouraged by the example and actions of Christ. He suffered and died, but then triumphed over death. Those who accept the preaching of the gospel will share in his victory, and those who reject him will hear words of judgment.
1 Peter 2:20-25 We are fully aware of the extreme pain and suffering involved in a crucifixion. But during his last night, Jesus suffered a full assortment of cruelties both great and small. He was abandoned, disappointed and betrayed by friends. It’s happened to us, and it hurts. Lies were told about him, and he was ridiculed, even in front of friends and family. He was hung on a cross, exposed naked in public, and saw his mother witness his shame and pain. All comfort, recognition and vindication came too late – after he died. Jesus knows every pain we suffer, and has shown us how to keep it all in perspective.