Summary: A reflection of what Jesus did for us encourages us to live for Him. Through His suffering,
A. BIBLE INTERPRETATION
1. Much of Bible is Easy to Understand but occasionally we get bumped into confusion.
2. Today is one of those bumps!
3. We may not solve the confusion today, … to get the practical help -- to encourage Christians in difficult days.
B. WHAT DID JESUS DO FOR YOU?
Today we will be talking about all that Jesus has done for us. Think about it – now – before we get started. WHAT DID JESUS DO FOR YOU? Think for a moment – Reflect on your own – What DID Jesus do For You?
SOME SENSITIVE TEXT TODAY. Don’t get so caught up -- that you miss the point.
C. OUR TEXT: 1 PETER 3:17-22
1. Peter is Still Talking About the Subject of Suffering – READ VERSE 17
a) Suffering from sin is a no-brainer. The Biblical LAW OF REAPING what one SOWES
READ GAL. 6:7-8
b) But what about when one Suffers for doing Good – For doing God’s Will?
READ AGAIN 2.20-21
Just as Christ suffered for doing good, so we too, should count \it a privilege to do the SAME considering all HE HAS DONE FOR US!
WHAT DID JESUS DO FOR YOU?
READ VERSES 18-22
THREE THINGS THAT CHRIST DID FOR US:
I. JESUS DIED FOR YOUR SINS (3.18)
In Vs. 18, About His Death, we are told:
A. His Death Was Sacrificial & Final. 2 Parts to this: ‘Christ died for sins once for all…’
1) ‘Christ died for sins’: Not HIS sins but OUR sins. Not HIS missing the mark but OUR missing the mark.
2) ‘once for all’: Christ’s Sacrifice was final
- don’t know that we can really grasp the significance of this b/c (the OT era)
Hebrews 7:27 (NIV)
27 Unlike the other high priests, he does not need to offer sacrifices day after day, first for his own sins, and then for the sins of the people. He sacrificed for their sins once for all when he offered himself.
B. His Death was Substitutionary - ‘righteous for the unrighteous’
He took our place – he bore our shame – he became our sickness (sin is a sickness)
ILLUSTRATION: THE GREEN MILE Tom Hanks – Paul Edgecomb; Michael Duncan – John Coffey
Coffey had the ability to reach inside and remove one’s sickness. Hanks had a kidney infection/stone. Coffee reached out and touched him and was able to literally take on that sickness and remove it from Hanks.
The warden’s wife had a tumor in the brain and was terminal – she was very close to death. Hanks and his Guards took Coffey to the Warden’s house where upon Coffee proceeded to touch the warden’s wife and remove the tumor from her placing it within himself.
EXACTLY what CHRIST DID FOR US. He reached down and touched us -- the SICKNESS OF OUR SINS UPON HIMSELF.
Why? SO WE COULD CLEAN AND PRESENTABLE!
C. His Death Was a Reconciling Death – ‘…that He might bring you to God’
The verb that is translated ‘bring’ is the picture of the presentation of a sacrifice.
God could not look upon sin nor be associated with it. Christ, once for all, became our sacrifice, our substitution, our sin, and our presenter all at the same time IN ORDER THAT we might BE PRESENTED TO GOD.
II. JESUS DECLARED HIS VICTORY OVER THE CROSS (3.19-20a)
Verse 19 is said to be the MOST CONTROVERSIAL PASSAGE in the Bible. It has umpteen variations and interpretations. In fact, the Roman Catholics use this verse to find support for the doctrine of purgatory. ONE COMMENTATOR noted that there are 9 GRK words in verse 19 cause disagreements.
I AM PROBABLY NOT GOING TO SOLVE OR SETTLE DOWN CENTURIES OF DEBATES BY INDIVIDUALS MUCH MORE LEARNED THAN I. My job is the APPLICATION TO YOUR LIVES AS CHRISTIANS!
When dealing with problem texts, we need to follow a couple of ground rules:
1) Problem verses should NOT be the basis for a NEW or UNSUPPORTED doctrine.
2) NEVER focus on the mysterious to the point of neglecting the main teaching (which is what scared me most today).
The difficulty is understanding what Peter means in Vs. 19 when he said:
‘through whom also he went and preached to the spirits in prison’
Peter seems to indicate that sometime between His death and His Resurrection, Jesus ‘preached’ a special message to the ‘spirits in prison’.
3 QUESTIONS: - WHO were these spirits? –WHEN did Christ preach? -WHAT does Christ preach?
1) WHO were these spirits ? - ‘went and preached to the spirits in prison’ – (19)
a) Some believe that the crucifixion and resurrection, Christ went to the realm of the dead – to ‘hell’ or ‘hades’ & preached to the ‘spirits in prison’ – (all the people who had lived before him who had died and gone to hell).