Monday, March 14, 2011

Standing Firm in the Grace of God

For quite some time, our pastor has been taking us through 1 Peter.  This past Sunday he wrapped it up by recapping the highlights.  They were so good I wanted to share them.  May you be blessed by it.

Standing Firm in the Grace of God
by Pastor Dan Gunter

A) Standing firm in the grace of our inheritance means that we accept joyfully the grace of faith tested.

1 Peter 1:6-9   In this you rejoice, though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been grieved by various trials, so that the tested genuineness of your faith--more precious than gold that perishes though it is tested by fire--may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ.  Though you have not seen him, you love him. Though you do not now see him, you believe in him and rejoice with joy that is inexpressible and filled with glory, obtaining the outcome of your faith, the salvation of your souls. 

B) Standing firm in the revelation of our inheritance means not conforming to our former godless conduct.

1 Peter 1:14-16  As obedient children, do not be conformed to the passions of your former ignorance, but as he who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, since it is written, "You shall be holy, for I am holy." 

C) Standing firm means putting away all the actions that once fed and filled us and longing for new real nourishment in the Word of God.

1 Peter 2:1-3 So put away all malice and all deceit and hypocrisy and envy and all slander. Like newborn infants, long for the pure spiritual milk, that by it you may grow up into salvation--if indeed you have tasted that the Lord is good. 

D) Because we are a chosen race and a royal priesthood, the true people of God's own possession, standing firm calls us to a conduct befitting the true people of God.

1 Peter 2:12 Keep your conduct among the Gentiles honorable, so that when they speak against you as evildoers, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day of visitation. 

1 Peter 2:17 Honor everyone. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honor the emperor. 

E) Standing firm in God's grace calls all of us to endure unjust suffering, it calls wives to submit to unvelieving husbands, and it calls us to submit to unjust governments.

1 Peter 2:18 Servants, be subject to your masters with all respect, not only to the good and gentle but also to the unjust. 

1 Peter 3:1-2 Likewise, wives, be subject to your own husbands, so that even if some do not obey the word, they may be won without a word by the conduct of their wives, when they see your respectful and pure conduct. 

1 Peter 2:13-15 Be subject for the Lord's sake to every human institution, whether it be to the emperor as supreme, or to governors as sent by him to punish those who do evil and to praise those who do good.  For this is the will of God, that by doing good you should put to silence the ignorance of foolish people. 

F) Standing firm in God's grace demands that we live the rest of our lives no longer dominated by the passions of this world, but passionately for the Kingdom of God.

1 Peter 4:1-2 Since therefore Christ suffered in the flesh, arm yourselves with the same way of thinking, for whoever has suffered in the flesh has ceased from sin, so as to live for the rest of the time in the flesh no longer for human passions but for the will of God. 

G) Standing firm in God's grace beckons us to love each other earnestly and sincerely because time is short and the times are evil.

1 Peter 4:7-10 The end of all things is at hand; therefore be self-controlled and sober-minded for the sake of your prayers.  Above all, keep loving one another earnestly, since love covers a multitude of sins. Show hospitality to one another without grumbling.  As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God's varied grace...

H) Standing firm summons us to rejoice when we suffer as Christ suffered and as citizens of the Kingdom of God.

1 Peter 4:12-14 Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery trial when it comes upon you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you. But rejoice insofar as you share Christ's sufferings, that you may also rejoice and be glad when his glory is revealed. If you are insulted for the name of Christ, you are blessed, because the Spirit of glory and of God rests upon you. 

I) And standing firm calls to us in times of difficulty to be humble toward each other and God and to resist the temptations of the Devil as he reveals our weaknesses.

1 Peter 5:6-9  Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you, casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you. Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. Resist him, firm in your faith, knowing that the same kinds of suffering are being experienced by your brotherhood throughout the world. 

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