Intro: The Book of 1 Peter is written in the same type of format as the Book of Eph.
A)In Eph. Paul spends the first 3 Chapters talking about the Wealth of the Believer – describing who we are in Christ /
B) Describing what Christ has done for us / what He is doing in us by His Spirit
1) Then after laying that foundation – Paul then PROCEEDS to explain what Christ wants to do Thru us
C) Practical instruction on How to walk / how to Love / How Stand / Fight
1) Well Peter writing under the Inspiration of the H.S. sets up this epistle in
much the same way
A)Ch.1:2 God’s Elect / V.3 Living Hope / Inheritance / Kept / Trials / Babes ….word / Stones in the Lord’s Building / Priest / Sojourners …./
B) This is such a Key concept in our relationship to Jesus Christ – that before we focus on what Christ calls us to do & what He wants us to be
1) We need to have a clear understanding of who Jesus is what He has done FOR US and Who we are in Him NOW !!!
C) As well as what He desires to continue to do in and Thru us by His Spirit and thru His Grace !!!!
Now we left off in w/ v.12 where Peter exhorts His readers in light of their being Strangers & travelers here to Live Honorable lives
A)As we come to v.13 today Peter gives some specific examples of areas where our honorable conduct can make a Difference !!!!
B) The theme of this next section is SUBMISSION – 3 AREAS
1) To Govt. / 2) At work / 3) In relationships ( Look at first 2 today) RD.
No insert outline – easy to follow outline – 3 things in each of these areas that we want to see What asking us to do / Why / How
A) So Peter looks at the duty of the Christian within the different spheres of his life;
1) and he begins with his duty as a citizen of the country in which he happens to live. Submission to Govt.
B) Word submit means to place yourself under their authority -
Now here is the thing that amazes me – Who was in Power when Peter wrote this ? Nero – was Nero a good guy?
A)History on Him : He came to power when he was 16, pushed there by his manipulative mother.
B)When he was 17 he poisoned a friend at court. At 18 he plotted to kill his mother. Three times he failed in this, then he had her assassinated.
1) his own Senate rebelled against him but he forced many of them to kill themselves.
C)We’ve talked about how Following the fire which destroyed a great part of the city of Rome he blamed & persecuted the Christians unmercifully.
1) Human candles / fed to wild beast/ Gladiators
D) Following 14 years as Emperor, Nero took his own life at 31 years of age, LEGACY one of the cruelest men ever to persecute the Christian church.
Now this was the Govt. that Peter writing under the inspiration of the H.S. was calling – His readers to be in submission to
A)Many of them had already lost family members to this corrupt regime and many more would- So How could the Lord – say such a thing :
B) Our text gives us a clue Look at v. 13 again – Submit yourself to every ordinance of man for the Lord’s sake
B) The word translated “ordinance” simply means “creation or institution.”
1) The meaning is, to every institution or appointment of man; & the people who are behind them
C)It does not refer to each individual law, but to the institutions that make and enforce the laws.
1) It is submitting to the office / respecting / Honoring the office & but not necessarily the man - v.17 Honor the King – doesn’t name Him
D) I have to be honest hard time – respecting our current President & her Husband - ( Cardinal O’Connor Memorial )
1) He was a man who loved the life of the unborn !!!! – Applause
E) I have a hard time respecting some one who stands for so much that the Bible is against - ( But I respect the office )
Now It is possible to submit to the institutions and still disobey the laws.
A) When do we do that ? Whenever those laws contradict the Bible !
B) Daniel – Prayer / Peter – don’t Preach – at that point – a higher law takes over - We must obey God rather than man
C) PRAYER ROOM - Wheel Chair ramp – Law – stupid law - How many times used in 13 yrs in this building / 1 time
D) Now in a situation like that – we will submit / But if the Govt ever said – stop Preaching /(Draw the line) – I would still be here – every week Preach
So there is what we are to do – But why does the Lord instruct us in this way ? - Note two things v.15
A)FIRST – v.15 This is the will of God 2nd it SILENCES the ignorance of foolish men
B) The Lord wants us to live in a way where we submit to the Institutions of our Govt. & respect those in authority because it is a Good witness
C) Silences those who want to talk bad about us
1) Word Silence = to Muzzle - idea of putting a muzzle on barking dog
D)In Matt. 22:34 the word is used of Jesus – silencing the Sadducees
And in Mark 4:39 Silencing a storm ( taking away its thunder )
1) When we submit ourselves to the institutions that God has placed us under it has a way of taking away their thunder ( No accusations)
E) Coming home from Church one night Greenville & Alton CM. Calf. Stop – give me a Break – Church / nothing better to do Quota
1) POOR WITNESS
The How is found in v.16 – As Free – but as Bondservants of God
A)As a Christian I am free in respect to all things – that are of this earth because I serve a Higher authority /
B) But I am not to use that freedom as an excuse to do evil
BARCLAY : Christian freedom is always conditioned by Christian responsibility. Christian responsibility is always conditioned by Christian love. Christian love is the reflection of God's love
The Christian is free because he is the slave of God. Christian freedom does not mean being free to do as we like; it means being free to do as we ought.
Christianity is community. The Christian is not an isolated unit; he is a member of a community and within that community his freedom operates. Christian freedom therefore is the freedom to serve.
C) That is the point that Peter is driving at here – my relationship to the Lord carries w/ it – a responsibility to be a Model Citizen
1) And our Honorable Conduct as it relates to Govt .( Our service –model
Citizens) will silence –
D) It will take away the Thunder of those who in their own ignorance are
always seeking to put us down.
Next Peter moves into the Work Place/ Submission on the Job v. 18-20
A)Historians tell us that In the Roman Empire at the time of this writing there were as many as 60 Million slaves,
B) Now some people wonder how such a statistic could be true when there wasn’t even 60 million people registered in the Pop. empire at that time
1) The answer is simple – Slaves were not considered to be people – therefore they weren’t considered to be a part of the Population
C) In Roman law a slave was not a person but a thing; and he had absolutely no legal rights whatsoever
1) Aristotle wrote "There can be no friendship nor justice towards inanimate things; indeed, not even towards a horse or an ox, nor yet towards a slave as a slave. For master and slave have nothing in common; a slave is a living tool, just as a tool is an inanimate slave."
D) Roman Historian Varro tells how the Romans divided the instruments of agriculture into three classes--the articulate, the inarticulate & the mute,
1) "the articulate comprising the slaves, the inarticulate - the cattle, and the mute - the vehicles. Carts & Plows "
E)It is also important to understand that it was by no means only menial tasks which were performed by slaves.
1) Doctors, teachers, musicians, actors, secretaries, stewards were slaves.
Basically everyone who wasn’t of some Political or Royal descent
Roman attitude was that there was no point in being master of the world and doing one's own work.
A)So Let the slaves do that and let the citizens live in pampered idleness.
The supply of slaves would never run out.
B)So The only difference between a slave and a beast or a farmyard cart was that a slave happened to be able to speak.
C) Now There were four classes of slaves: those who worked in the mines, those who worked on the farms, those who worked for the cities,
1) and those to whom Peter is writing, the 'house servants.'
D)It was this latter group that Peter was writing to at this point – the word he uses for servant – specifically means – House servant !!!!
Now there were 3 main things Challenging the Slaves in this time & each one can be a Problem in our day as well as it relates employer and Employee relationships
A)The first Problem was this – some of the slaves had masters who were Christian – they were good men – loved God
1) B) That Slave & his master might fellowship at the same – house study as equals/ they worshipped together / Communion / Love feast
C) Sundays were wonderful but Mondays were weird because they had to again assume the master--slave relationship.
D) In some instances – the slave could be the Pastor – then – Sunday – back to being the slave
E) This relationship – when both were saved – there could be a tendency for the Slave to take advantage of his master – not work as hard
1) Talk about the study yesterday – oh I was late – praying – or I was out late at a study or bother so & so had car problems – help
We can struggle in that same manner today/ take advantage of each other
A)For that reason I know guys who are Employers who avoid – hiring Christians – because – too many bad experiences – in this area
B) In reality when a person is born again their Christianity should produce a new attitude towards work. Whether their boss is a Christian or not
1) It is the conviction of the New Testament that all work must be done for Jesus Christ. Paul writes: (Col 3:17).
C) In the Christian ideal work is not done Primarily for an earthly BOSS or for personal prestige or to make so much money; it is done for God.
2nd Problem was in the case of the Master pushing the servant too hard because of him being a Christian
A)But Christianity introduced a new relationship between master and man.
B)When Paul sent the runaway slave Onesimus back to Philemon, he did not for a moment suggest that Philemon should set Onesimus free.
1) He did not suggest that Philemon should cease to be the master and that Onesimus should cease to be the slave.
C)What he did say was that Philemon must receive Onesimus not now as a servant, but as a beloved brother (Phm 1:16 ).
Barclay is helpful here : Christianity did not abolish social differences; but it introduced a new relationship of brotherhood in which these other differences were overpassed and transformed. Where there is real brotherhood, it does not matter if you call one man master and the other servant. There is between them a bond which transforms the necessary differences which the circumstances of life make necessary.
Now the problem that Peter addressed here seems to be in the Context of a slave working for an unbelieving Master
A)WHAT – Peter instructs is that the slave needed to be in submission to their master – whether good or harsh
B) The word submissive here is very graphic – means to rank yourself under someone else in order to lift them up & build them up
C) See the natural tendency of a slave who was a believer would have been to see himself as better than his unbelieving master
1) Such a mindset could be the cause for – a rebellious attitude to develop
Especially w/ a master who was harsh /I don’t have to take this
D)The word harsh is interesting - it means one who is crooked or bent
Some people are just really twisted – they are all wound up like a Human Pretzel – bent by life / bent by sin / their outlook is twisted
A)Consequently their dealings w/ others are twisted
B)That person can end up being very cruel- but the cruelty of another doesn’t give us the right to complain or do poor work
1) Just because my boss might be a jerk doesn’t mean that I get to be a jerk back – or do lousy work
C) Peter says – Place yourself under that person – to lift them higher
Now again why is this important – again we want to note two things
A)1st – We are told in v.19& 20 – This is commendable to God
B) Word Commendable = it is acceptable to God – He looks upon such action in a favorable way & dispenses Grace to bear under the pressure
C) Peter puts it this way What good is it if you are beaten / or in our case fired for being a lousy worker ?
1) There is no Commendation in that – But those who are beaten or in our case fired – Unjustly – The Lord is going to reward
D) So the first reason is it is Commendable before God – but the 2nd reason is even greater – In doing so we are following the Example of Christ
21For to this you were called, because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that you should follow His steps:
22“Who committed no sin, Nor was deceit found in His mouth”;
That is the GOAL – no sin no deceit found in his mouth
Now The word Peter uses for example is very vivid.
A)The Grk word translated example literally means to write under – carries the idea of Children learning to write given a pad w/ letters outlined
1) they are to write over them – trace those letters
B) The idea of Planting our feet in the footsteps of the Lord – so we want to note how Peter illustrates that the Lord did this
C)Peter tells us How to do this v. 21-25
1) Look first at what He didn’t do – Note two things
1st V.23 He didn’t revile – rail in reply to use abusive language
A)I am by nature a complainer - Grocery store - Instructions – this is really stupid
B) Gaylord – here is what WE are going to do today – mow lawn / clean toilets / wash windows -
1) We he isn’t doing anything – sitting in that air conditioned office talking on the phone
D) Gaylord is not a lazy guy - better things to do than clean toilets w/ me
2nd He didn’t threaten – not Challenging them – didn’t yell at them I will get even
A) 1st He v.23 He committed Himself to the one who judges rightly
B) He placed his whole case / his cause/ his interest in the hands of the father
1) Though wronged by people Jesus knew that His father would do right
C) Such an important thing to do – place our case/ our cause / our interest – that situation where we have been wronged into the hands of the Lord
1) Instead of growing bitter – instead of getting all uptight instead of losing
D) When you can’t forgive it only hurts you
2nd He saw the big Picture v.24 The Purpose of His suffering It was to bring us salvation
who Himself bore our sins in His own body on the tree, that we, having died to sins, might live for righteousness—by whose stripes you were healed.
A)We are to willingly rank under good and kind masters as well as unreasonable masters with all respect as unto the Lord,
1) realizing that there are higher things at stake than our rights.
B)It may be God's plan to accomplish salvation and the abolishment of harsh treatment in that work-place through you.
1) The stakes are higher than our rights. The stakes are the salvation of co-workers the salvation of your boss. He will see Christ in you.
C) When you go to work tomorrow let your bosses call it a place of employment, but you as slaves of Christ can call it your ministry.
1) SIGNS – entering the mission field !!!!
The third thing we see concerning how Jesus did this is seen in v.25
A)He was motivated by love – He saw you when you were going astray – when you were bent & crooked yourself – because of sin – COMPASSION
C) Our bearing under the Pressure situations and submitting to people who are bent and Harsh / difficult - ( needs to be motivated by Love)
So Jesus is our example – But we can’t stop here – see if Jesus is only my example I am in big trouble – Because in myself I can’t do any of this
A)My natural tendency is to complain about our GOVT. – and to not respect the man or the office
B) My natural tendency isn’t to suffer patiently – when I am being reviled I want to revile back – if me or my family is threatened –
1) Give it to them w/ both barrels
C) I don’t want to commit things like that into the hands of Him who judges rightly – that will take too long – I want Justice right Now
D) So how do we do this ? How does this work ?
Here is what we need to see before we go – Jesus is not just my example of How – But Jesus is my empowerer – He is my Helper
A)V.24 again we see the means – How the power is unlocked
who Himself bore our sins in His own body on the tree, that we, having died to sins, might live for righteousness
B) We died to sins – When Christ died – we died w/ Him – and we continue to die to sins – the natural tendencies of the Flesh
1) And when we do – He empowers us w/ MIGHT – to live for righteousness
C) Might is not passive here – not saying – that we may be able – 50 /50 Chance / No He is saying that – when we died w/ Christ / He rose
1) His life has been infused into us – that translates into the Power to live for Righteousness –
D) Whole idea we talked about in Ch. 1 begotten again to a living Hope
1) Living means more than Just Alive – it means active & working
Now we often think of that Hope in ref. To heaven – but it is much more than that – Hope = Absolute expectation of coming good
A)It is a Hope that – He who has begun this good work in your life is going to complete it
B) It is the Hope – the Absolute expectation that what Jesus desires to do in my life – He is going to accomplish / because He loves me so much
1) Because Jesus is living in me by His spirit – He is actively working in my life to bring me to His desired end
C) So He isn’t just our example – He is our enabler – He is my Shepherd & the overseer of my soul
He is my shepherd – shepherd - shepherd is the one who cares for the sheep – loves the sheep – leads the sheep / Protects
A)And if a sheep was tired or injured – the Shepherd would carry them
Every need that the sheep had the shepherd would meet it
B) The Term shepherd is one of the oldest descriptions of God. The Psalmist has it in the best-loved of all the Psalms: (Ps 23:1).
1) "The Lord is my shepherd"
C) Isaiah has it: (Isa 40:11). "He will feed his flock like a shepherd: he will gather the lambs in his arms; he will carry them in his bosom, and gently lead those that are with young"
D) This word shepherd tells us very vividly of the ceaseless vigilance and the self-sacrificing love of God for us who are his flock.
1) "We are his people and the sheep of his pasture" (Ps 100:3).
E) How am I going to make it – I have a shepherd who is watching out for me / who is leading me / supplies me w/ all I need to make it thru
1) And in those times when I can’t take another step – He is there in His Grace to carry me – that extra mile / thru that difficult situation
F) When I go astray – give into the flesh – He goes after me because He loves me so much / He will discipline me when Necessary – ( Break legs)
He is my enabler / He is my shepherd / He is the over seer of my soul
A) The Soul is the most Vulnerable part of my existence – He is the one who - watches out for me
B)That there is something very beautiful in the expression “Overseer of souls.”
1) It implies that the soul is the special care of the Savior; that it is the object of his special interest; and that it is of great value—
C) My Soul is the object of his special guardianship, and he will not be unfaithful to the trust placed in him.
1) There is nothing more safe than the human soul is when it is committed in faith to the keeping of the Son of God.
Tim.1:12 For this reason I also suffer these things; nevertheless I am not ashamed, for I know whom I have believed and am persuaded that He is able to keep what I have committed to Him until that Day.
D)Jesus is the Shepherd the Guardian of our souls.
1) In his love he cares for us; in his power he protects us;& in his wisdom
He guides us in the right way.
E)As we regard our own safety and happiness, let us commit ourselves to him as our great Shepherd, to follow where he leads us,
1) and to be ever under his pastoral inspection./ Always trusting in His Resources to empower us to Live in Righteousness
Have You committed your soul to Him !!!!