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Summary: part 2 of our 1 Peter study

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Wayfaring Strangers

A Study of 1 Peter

Part 2

“ it was the best of times, it was the worst of times”

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times

It was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness

It was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity,

It was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness,

it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair

We had everything before us, we had nothing before us

The opening words of Charles Dickens’s A Tale of Two Cities described what it was like to live as a French peasant in the years leading up to the French Revolution.

But those timeless words are also a pretty good description of what it’s like to live as a disciple of Jesus in today’s world

As His disciples

Our lives are really a tale of two cities

No---

A more proper description would be

Our lives are a tale of two worlds

One of those worlds is characterized by

Foolishness

Unbelief

darkness

despair

and

evil

And the ways of that world if followed lead to hell.

The other world is filled with

wisdom

belief

light

hope

and goodness

and if followed leads to heaven.

But here is the deal

we must, as least a while

live in both worlds simultaneously

and this situation

this circumstance

This two homes problem

Leads to all kinds of problems that have no easy answers.

But what we’re going to find over the next few months as we study 1 Peter is that finding a lasting solution to those problems begins with answering two questions:

Please open your bibles to 1 Peter

Chapter 1

Verses 1-3 again today

“This letter is from Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ.

I am writing to God’s chosen people who are living as foreigners in the provinces of Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia.[a] 2 God the Father knew you and chose you long ago, and his Spirit has made you holy. As a result, you have obeyed him and have been cleansed by the blood of Jesus Christ.

May God give you more and more grace and peace.

The Apostle Peter writes this letter to the wayfaring strangers on this earth

Those who have accepted Jesus and now feel like they don’t fit in, in this evil world

He goes on to explain how all our relationships change when we become believers

And as we become more spiritually mature

They will change even more

Today I want to focus on two areas where our relationships change

We will look at a third more in depth in the weeks to come

Both for today

I want to look at our relationship with the world and our relationship with God

Later we will look at our relationship with ourselves as we become stronger believers

I. Our Relationship to the World

The key word Peter uses is “strangers,”

which is sometimes translated as “aliens” or “sojourners” or even “foreigners.”

It describes those who come from another country but now live in this country.

What Peter means is that Christians are strangers residing on the earth whose home is in heaven.

Visiting a foreign country gives us a good idea of how this feels

I recall my feelings in Zambia

Many of you can relate

Surrounded by people who don’t look like you,

Talk like you,

Think like you

Or live like you.

They have a set of values you don’t share,

Speak a language you don’t speak or can’t understand

And

Eat food that seems strange to you.

You pick up the paper and you can’t read it.

You turn on the radio and it doesn’t make sense.

You’re standing on a sidewalk and you can’t communicate with anyone.

You are there

Physically

But still feel as if you are not

It’s not a question of isolation from the world.

That’s impossible and fruitless.

But he also writes to those who have not left home

But now feel like those who have

They no longer feel comfortable

They not longer feel as if they fit in

Their location has not changed

But their heart has

It’s a question of being in the world and not of the world.

That’s our condition as believers in Jesus

We are strangers in the world who have been scattered by God in many places.

We are like seeds the wind has carried in all directions.

That’s okay because God has strategically planted us where we can do the most good.

So, Just what is a Wayfaring Stranger you may ask

If you are a businessman and have decided as a Christian not to cheat, lie, or double-cross, if you’ve decided to deliver what you promise, you are a stranger in the world. You are in the world but not of the world

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