Faithlife Sermons

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The Power of God’s Word
1 Peter 1:17-2:3
Sermon by Rick Crandall
Grayson Baptist Church - June 27, 2012
*As you’ve already heard, our theme for VBS this year is “Amazing Wonders Aviation,” and it’s all about the amazing power of God.
Against the backdrop of some of the world’s great natural wonders, the children will look into the Bible to see God’s amazing power over nature, our circumstances, sin and death.
We will also explore the amazing power God wants to have over our lives.
*“Amazing Wonders Aviation” is all about the amazing power of our God, so today we will focus on the power of God’s Word.
*Please open your Bibles to 1 Peter 1, and we will start reading in vs. 17, where Peter is speaking to everyone who has trusted in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior.
17.
And if you call on the Father, who without partiality judges according to each one's work, conduct yourselves throughout the time of your sojourning here in fear;
18. knowing that you were not redeemed with corruptible things, like silver or gold, from your aimless conduct received by tradition from your fathers,
19. but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot.
20.
He indeed was foreordained before the foundation of the world, but was manifest in these last times for you
21. who through Him believe in God, who raised Him from the dead and gave Him glory, so that your faith and hope are in God.
22. Since you have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit in sincere love of the brethren, love one another fervently with a pure heart,
23.
having been born again, not of corruptible seed but incorruptible, through the word of God which lives and abides forever,
24. because "All flesh is as grass, and all the glory of man as the flower of the grass.
The grass withers, and its flower falls away,
25. but the word of the Lord endures forever.''
Now this is the word which by the gospel was preached to you.
1 Peter 2:1-3
1.
Therefore, laying aside all malice, all guile, hypocrisy, envy, and all evil speaking,
2. as newborn babes, desire the pure milk of the word, that you may grow thereby,
3. if indeed you have tasted that the Lord is gracious.
*There is no other book like this Book.
The Bible is the amazing, miraculous Word of God.
And it is saturated with the power of God.
1.
First this morning, the Bible has the power to give us salvation.
*This is why in Romans 1:16, the Apostle Paul said, "I am not ashamed of the gospel (or good news) of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek.”
*The Word of God has the power to give us salvation.
And in today’s Scripture, Peter shows us 3 basics of our salvation.
[1] The first basic is freedom.
*Salvation sets us free.
We must know this essential truth, so starting in vs. 18, Peter tells believers:
18. knowing that you were not redeemed with corruptible things, like silver or gold, from your aimless conduct received by tradition from your fathers,
19. but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot.
*Being "redeemed" means to be delivered or liberated or set free, because someone else paid a ransom for your freedom.
And Jesus Christ redeemed or paid the ransom for everyone who trusts in Him.
*That’s why in Matthew 20:28 Jesus said, “The Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”
And the New Living Translation puts vs. 18&19 this way:
18.
For you know that God paid a ransom to save you from the empty life you inherited from your ancestors.
And the ransom He paid was not mere gold or silver.
19.
It was the precious lifeblood of Christ, the sinless, spotless Lamb of God.
*Salvation sets us free.
The blood of Jesus Christ has the power to redeem us from spiritual slavery.
But that doesn’t make sense unless you understand that every person who has ever been born, was born a slave to sin and death.
*You were born a slave to sin and death, but Jesus Christ came into the world to set us free.
This is why Hebrews 2:14-15 speaks about Jesus and says:
14.
Inasmuch then as the children have partaken of flesh and blood, He Himself likewise shared in the same, that through death He might destroy him who had the power of death, that is, the devil,
15. and release those who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage.
*Every one of us was born a slave to sin and death.
But on the cross, Jesus paid the price to set us free.
On the cross, Jesus died to take the punishment for our sins.
*One preacher put it this way: "The cross is the place where grace and sin collide with a crash, but the wreckage is suffered on the heart of God.
The sinner walks away free: Free from sin’s penalty, free to walk with God, free to live in His heaven for all eternity."
(1)
*Salvation sets us free.
[2] But we could never get this freedom without the Word of God.
That’s because salvation requires our faith.
*So in vs. 20&21, Peter said this about Jesus:
20.
He indeed was foreordained before the foundation of the world, but was manifest in these last times for you
21. who through Him believe in God, who raised Him from the dead and gave Him glory, so that your faith and hope are in God.
*Peter had a lot to say about faith in this chapter.
Look starting up in vs. 3:
3. Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His abundant mercy has begotten us again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,
4. to an inheritance incorruptible and undefiled and that does not fade away, reserved in heaven for you,
5. who are kept by the power of God through FAITH for salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.
6.
In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while, if need be, you have been grieved by various trials,
7. that the genuineness of your FAITH, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ,
8. whom having not seen you love.
Though now you do not see Him, yet BELIEVING, you rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory,
9. receiving the end of your FAITH -- the salvation of your souls.
*Salvation requires our faith, and there is only one place to get this saving faith: from the Word of God.
As Paul said in Romans 10:17, “Faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.
*After Jesus rose from the dead, He appeared to His disciples on the first Easter Sunday, but for some reason, Thomas wasn’t there, and he refused to believe.
Eight days later, Jesus appeared again, and this time Thomas was with the disciples.
In John 20:29, Jesus said to him, "Thomas, because you have seen Me, you have believed.
Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.''
*Then the Apostle John wrote:
30. . .
“Truly Jesus did many other signs in the presence of His disciples, which are not written in this book;
31.
but these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing you may have life in His name.”
*Salvation requires our faith.
[3] And it puts us in a family.
*Peter reminds us of this truth starting in vs. 23, where he talks about believers being born again.
Peter said that Christians have:
23. . .
“been born again, not of corruptible seed but incorruptible, through the word of God which lives and abides forever,
24. because ‘All flesh is as grass, and all the glory of man as the flower of the grass.
The grass withers, and its flower falls away,
25. but the word of the Lord endures forever.’
Now this is the word which by the gospel was preached to you.”
*When we hear the good news about Jesus Christ from the Bible and turn to God, when we open our hearts to receive Jesus as Lord and Savior, we are saved by God.
This means our sins are forgiven, we receive God’s gift of eternal life, and we are spiritually born again into the Family of God.
*You may not have another blood relative in this world.
But if you are saved, you are part of the best Family of all!
And all of this comes through the Word of God.
-No one has ever been saved without the Word of God.
-It has the power to save our souls.
*When Tony Campolo was a professor at Eastern University, many of his coworkers were atheists.
So Tony tried to be logical and persuasive in standing up for his Christian beliefs.
Sometimes he went too far, like the time Tony made a joke that not all Christians were like those guys who hold up Scripture signs at ballgames.
*One of Tony’s coworkers replied that two years before he was watching the Super Bowl, and noticed a man in the stands holding up a sign that said, "John 1:12."
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