Summary: This is the 7th study in the study "Hope In The Darkness". This study looks at remaining faithful in our service to Christ no matter what happens.
LIVING IN UNFAIRNESS
One of the hardest lessons to learn in life is that life is not always fair. It seems like the harder you try to live like a Christian the more difficulties you face. It also seems like those who could care less about God seem to prosper the most.
Every study in 1 Peter to this point has been illustrations of how we are to live in this world as Christians. This text sums it all up.
I believe this sums up what Christian living should be. Although there is no need for explanation, I would call your attention to the statement that says, “That goes for all of you, no exceptions.” It is really easy to notice what others need to do, how they need to act, and what their flaws are; but examining and fixing yourself is much more difficult.
The next three verses come from Psalm 34:12-16 and are a good illustration of living a godly life regardless of how unfair life seems to be. David wrote this Psalm while he was running from King Saul. David had served King Saul faithfully and because David was chosen by God to be the next King of Israel, Saul wanted David killed. Although David was to be the next King of Israel, he was having to run and hide like some kind of criminal. Notice what was happening in David’s life during the time of this Psalm.
Just A Note
Write down the 5 be’s and the 3 no’s found in these 2 verses from The Message translation.
How are you doing on the be’s?
How are you doing on the no’s?
Suffering For Obedience
How embarrassing! David was doing what God was asking him to do and now he is having to act like some kind of lunatic in order to save his life. How fair is that? Let’s now look at what David had to write in this Psalm.
David and Peter were saying the same thing. It doesn’t matter what is happening all around you. You are to leave it in God’s hands and not turn to the evil ways of the world. Many times the motto of Christians seems to be, “If you can’t beat them, join them”; but that is completely opposite of what we are called to do as Christians. God knows what is going on and He is still in charge. Turn from evil and run towards good and God will bless you for it.
Peter continues on with this theme of suffering for obedience to God. Remember that your suffering is just temporary because when you are in Heaven for the rest of eternity, you will not be suffering at all. This also teaches us that sometimes we most go through the “storms of life” in order to grow stronger in Christ, not because we are being punished for sinful living.
Just A Note
Are you a person that likes to “sling mud”? You know, instead of living a godly life, get even with those that have wronged you. When people try to use you as their reason for not being a Christian, do they have a valid argument?
Suffering Of Christ
Think about this. Is it fair that Jesus Christ had to leave a perfect Heaven for us? Is it fair that Jesus’ family here on this earth was poor? Is it fair that Jesus had to go from place to place with no place to call home? Is it fair that Jesus Christ, who lived a perfect life, was crucified for the sins of the world? Is it fair that Jesus Christ was buried in a borrowed tomb? Is it fair that Jesus Christ descended into Hades and had to defeat sin and death? The answer to all of these questions is a simple no; but Christ did all of these things anyway.
This passage also explains baptism to us. Many people believe that we must be baptized to be saved and in fact they are right; but it is not the physical baptism but the baptism of the Holy Spirit. The moment a person accepts Christ as Savior they are baptized in the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit lives within every believer. Once a person is saved, they are not their own. They belong to God and should be directed and led by the Holy Spirit that lives within them.
Sunday Evening Bible Study
Series: Hope In The Darkness (Study In 1 Peter) #7
March 23, 2003
Bel Aire Baptist Church
Pastor Shawn Drake