1 Peter 1:1-2 Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, To those who are elect exiles of the dispersion in Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia, (2) according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, in the sanctification of the Spirit, for obedience to Jesus Christ and for sprinkling with his blood: May grace and peace be multiplied to you.
WHY 1 and 2 PETER?
It is a handbook of how to live in a culture that is hostile toward God… to live faithfully. (not a soundbite, People only want the bottom line all the time… just questions to targeted questions.
“They don’t want to read books, they want to read chapters, they don’t want to read chapters, they want to read sentences. They don’t want to read sentences, they want to read slogans. They don’t want to read slogans, they want to read words.” Alistair Begg
We don’t want to breed another generation of Christians who will not dive deep into the Word to know Christ and grow to maturity.
WHO is PETER and WHY does it MATTER?
Peter got as much wrong as he did right, if not more. This is essential for us, ecause there are so many things about Peter that would seem to disqualify him in our minds from being a pillar of the church and the spread of the Gospel… but God in His SOVEREIGN GOODNESS and GRACE uses ordinary, flawed, weak, transformed people for His glorious Gospel purposes. This is the reality for us. Maybe you don’t feel like God can use you because of your past, your weaknesses, your failures, your lack of position or prestige… God has called you, elected you, chosen you… HE wants to USE you.
The SOBER and GLORIOUS REALITY of our IDENTITY:
1. ELECT (Ephesians 1:2-14)
2. EXILES of the DISPERSION(Hebrews 11)
Christians are not strangers because they have moved from their homeland to a new country. They are exiles because their identity has so radically changed that they are no longer at home in their country of birth. – T. Chester, S. Timmis
The SOURCE and PURPOSE of our IDENTITY:
1. The choosing work of the Father
2. The sanctifying work of the Spirit
3. The life and forgiveness of Jesus Christ
The PRODUCT of our IDENTITY: That grace and peace would be ours. Not fear, not trepidation… but grace and peace. We have to find HOPE and PEACE in the
1. Electing love of God that holds us for eternity
2. Fact that our position in the culture is for our personal holiness
3. Power of Jesus to obey Him in the culture.
God is NOT SURPRISED… but is WORKING in and through the culture to make us more like Him.
“The shaking of American culture is no sign that God has given up on American Christianity. In fact, it may be a sign that God is rescuing American Christianity from itself.” Russell Moore
see Onward: Engaging the Culture without Losing the Gospel by Russell Moore for more…