Summary: The last words that any person speaks are important. Peter spends his letting us know the wonders of what we have in Christ, and implying that we can use what we have, or ignore it.
Passage: 2 Peter 1:1-4
Intro: The last words that people speak are powerful, memorable.
Il) Sir Francis Newport, the head of an English club for nonbelievers, said this to those gathered around his dying bed: “You need not tell me there is not God for I know there is one, and that I am in his angry presence. You need not tell me there is no hell, for I already feel my soul slipping into its fires! Wretches, cease your idle talk about there being hope for me? I know I am lost forever”
Il) Adoniram Judson, “I am not tired of my work, neither am I tired of the world; yet when Christ calls me home, I shall go with the gladness of a boy bounding away from school”
1. last words are powerful, and 2 Peter is just that.
2. most believe Peter executed soon after.
3. mostly warning about false teachers.
4. but begins with great encouragement to those who believe in Jesus.
5. and behind the statement of all we have in Christ, there is an implied question that we need to address.
6. “what are you going to do about it?”
7. our faith is something we can act on, or waste.
I. What We Have In Christ
1. most likely in prison for the gospel, Peter is wildly enthusiastic about the faith for which he is about to be crucified
2. calls the faith that he shares with his readers “precious”. Word=”honor, privilege”
3. and goes on in vv2-4 to describe the riches associated with this faith.
4. v2 “grace and peace be multiplied to you”
5. words describe a most dramatic change that is made available to believers.
6. “made available” because Peter wishes they may be yours “in abundance”,
7. for now, recognize they are part of what we have in Christ,
8. grace=undeserved favor of God, peace=freedom from turmoil, anxiety
9. these come from “knowledge of God”
10. word=strengthened form of knowledge, a deep and intimate relationship with God
11. we have entered a whole new sphere in which God, who was angry with us, is now delighted with us and eager to pour out His grace on us.
Il) Richie Sexson used to play for enemy, hated to see him come to plate. Now for D’backs, like him
12. in addition, we have “everything we need” to live the Christian life “through relationship with God”
13. a vast array of tools:
PP Power, indwelling Spirit with fruit of Spirit, wisdom, understanding, spiritual eyesight, fellowship with others, the Bible and the Spirit teaching us, new nature obedient to God.
14. these include “great and precious promises”, which the Bible is full of.
15. brothers and sisters, the false teachers of our day will tell you that you need what only they can give you.
16. they’ll sell prayer clothes and secret knowledge and seminars and books that will “transform your life”.
17. fact is, everything we need is already present based on our being related to Jesus Christ.
II. How We Received What We Have in Christ
1. what we think about this makes a huge difference in how we live the Christian life.
2. too many of us think salvation is something we have to strive to earn or deserve.
3. notice the words and phrases Peter uses to describe what our faith is based on.
4. v1 “through the righteousness…have received”
5. powerful statement. Where are we in that statement?
6. recipients of God’s gift, nothing more
7. v2 we have access to grace and peace…how?
8. through relationship with God. Hint here; grace and peace comes thru relationship with God, and not through circumstances.
Il) Joni Eareckson and those like her, missionaries
9. we try to gain peace thru things, but only obtained thru relationship with God
10. v3 “everything we need”… “through knowledge of Him”,
11. again, relationship is the critical element. If we have relationship, we have everything we need. Connected!!
12. notice too that this relationship comes as a result of being “called” by God
13. this is a great mystery, and yet so clearly taught in Scripture we cannot ignore the fact.
-basis? God’s character
14. and then we have all the promises God has given us, things He calls us to do and be, and the results and rewards of obedience.
14. bottom line is this.
15. we are not beggars pleading with God to bless us, to give us things.
Il) kids to come to door selling stuff at terribly inflated prices.
16. God has initiated the restored relationship with us, has sent His own Son to pay the sin debt we owed, has blessed us immeasurably and will continue to do so for all eternity.
17. He has done this to spare us from a miserable eternity and to give us instead life, hope, joy, peace, meaning, and eternity spent in His presence.