Faithlife Sermons

REAL attitudes

Mike Measley
The Gospel for REAL Life: A Study of 1 Peter  •  Sermon  •  Submitted   •  Presented
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To apply the Gospel to REAL Life, we need to have REAL attitudes, and then live it out.

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1 Peter in review:
Letter to encourage Christians about how to live in this REAL world which is full of trials of all kinds
Starts with encouragement Focusing on what God has done, is doing and will do for us:
To God’s elect
Exiles / aliens / strangers - we should feel out of place here
According to the foreknowledge of God the Father
Sanctifying work of the Spirit
Convicting us of sin leading to salvation
Renewing our minds to be holy
To Obedience to Jesus Christ
And to sprinkling with his blood
Has given new birth
Has given us a living hope
Is keeping an inheritance for us
Is shielding us by His power through faith
Will give us praise, glory and honor when Christ is revealed
Focus on Christ’s return
Focus on how we should live
1 Peter 1:13;
Big Question: What is my attitude in my trials?
What is attitude?
Winston Churchill once said,
Attitude is a little thing that makes a BIG difference.
Example: In Facing the Giants, the first thing the coach had to address was his players attitudes. They were going into the season already defeated. We “may as well” practice. The coach pointed out that their attitude, though seemingly little, made a BIG difference.
Can you imagine the world today had Winston Churchhill had a defeated attitude after the troops were overrun in France at the beginning of World War II?
Webster’s defines it as, among other things:
a position assumed for a specific purpose 〈a threatening attitude〉
a mental position with regard to a fact or state 〈a helpful attitude〉
an organismic state of readiness to respond in a characteristic way to a stimulus (as an object, concept, or situation)
Attitude, our mental position assumed for a purpose, or regarding a current state, or in readiness to respond to a certain state plays a big part in our lives.
God searches out the hearts and attitudes of people. And to him, our attitude is just as important as our outward actions. Jesus taught this to His disciples in Matthew 23:1-12. Turn with me there.
Matthew 23:1–12 NIV
Then Jesus said to the crowds and to his disciples: “The teachers of the law and the Pharisees sit in Moses’ seat. So you must be careful to do everything they tell you. But do not do what they do, for they do not practice what they preach. They tie up heavy, cumbersome loads and put them on other people’s shoulders, but they themselves are not willing to lift a finger to move them. “Everything they do is done for people to see: They make their phylacteries wide and the tassels on their garments long; they love the place of honor at banquets and the most important seats in the synagogues; they love to be greeted with respect in the marketplaces and to be called ‘Rabbi’ by others. “But you are not to be called ‘Rabbi,’ for you have one Teacher, and you are all brothers. And do not call anyone on earth ‘father,’ for you have one Father, and he is in heaven. Nor are you to be called instructors, for you have one Instructor, the Messiah. The greatest among you will be your servant. For those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.
Jesus instructed his disciples to do the right things, but the point here was not just in doing the right things, but having the right attitude in doing them. Done for God, not for self-honor.
I believe this a an important passage, and one that Peter had in mind when he wrote this letter under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. He even quotes from the same Old Testament passage, Proverbs 3:34.
Let’s read the passage for today, 1 Peter 5:1-10.
1 Peter 5:1–10 NIV
To the elders among you, I appeal as a fellow elder and a witness of Christ’s sufferings who also will share in the glory to be revealed: Be shepherds of God’s flock that is under your care, watching over them—not because you must, but because you are willing, as God wants you to be; not pursuing dishonest gain, but eager to serve; not lording it over those entrusted to you, but being examples to the flock. And when the Chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the crown of glory that will never fade away. In the same way, you who are younger, submit yourselves to your elders. All of you, clothe yourselves with humility toward one another, because, “God opposes the proud but shows favor to the humble.” Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you. Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that the family of believers throughout the world is undergoing the same kind of sufferings. And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast.

REAL Attitudes

Peter begins this section with his personal appeal.
It is not one of command, but appeal. It is not written as one in authority, but a friend, a brother, someone who is alongside.
He begins by addressing those who are elders in the church.
1 Peter 1:1–2 NIV
Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, To God’s elect, exiles scattered throughout the provinces of Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia and Bithynia, who have been chosen according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through the sanctifying work of the Spirit, to be obedient to Jesus Christ and sprinkled with his blood: Grace and peace be yours in abundance.
He uses three words which are used of those in this role in the church in acts, and the other epistles, that is the letters written to the church by Paul, John, Peter and others.
Elders - role
Shepherds - heart attitude, and way of carrying out the role
Overseer - job description
Shepherd - care for, lead for them to thrive, watching over them, keeping an eye on their needs, any dangers that are around.
But he mentions a couple attitudes in particular for these men to hold onto.
This is timely for us as we are currently looking for elders.
Let’s look at it again.

1 Peter 5:2, Willingness

God wants people who are willing. You see this also in 2 Co 9:7 speaking about giving; and Phm 14 where he was encouraging Philemon to receive back his runaway slave who had received Christ and was returning to him.
God does not want us to do the right thing because we ‘have to.’ God delights in those who do what is right because they joyfully wish to do so.

1 Peter 5:2, Servant-hearted

This is in line with what Peter heard Jesus share as recorded in Matthew 23. The Pharisees, the religious leaders of the day were all about themselves. They did the right things so people would notice, and so they would get the best seats of honor when invited out to gatherings. They sought to be the greatest so they could be the boss of everyone else.
What did the disciples constantly argue about, even up to the day before Christ was crucified? ‘Who is the greatest?’
Jesus told them in Matthew 23:11 that the greatest is the servant of all, the one who follows His example.

1 Peter 5:3, Example

In John 13, Jesus set the example for His disciples. That is what we are supposed to do as well.
1 Corinthians 11:1 NIV
Follow my example, as I follow the example of Christ.
The author of Hebrews also mentions this in Hebrews 13:7.
Hebrews 13:7 NIV
Remember your leaders, who spoke the word of God to you. Consider the outcome of their way of life and imitate their faith.
Elders need to set the example, not just dictate what needs to happen, or what people should do. Rather they need to live it first.

1 Peter 5:4, Heavenly-minded

We are to do what we do for a reward from Him when He comes, working as unto the Lord. Too often, we want people to recognize us now. We want to do the work and get the benefit now. Our we just pursue the things that we think will get us recognition, economic gain, or enjoyment of some form here and now. Christ calls us to not seek the things of this world, but to seek first His Kingdom and His Righteousness.
All of these attitudes, Willingness, Servant-heartedness, living as an example, and being heavenly minded are qualities we need in elders.
However, they are also qualities we ALL need in our lives.

1 Peter 5:5-6, Humility

Peter has talked a lot about humility and submission through this letter.
submission to our Father in heaven, submission to the governing authorities, submission to those over us in our work, submission of wives to husbands, and husbands living in consideration of their wives.
Now he tells the church to live in submission to elders.
Hebrews mentions this as well.
Hebrews 13:17 NIV
Have confidence in your leaders and submit to their authority, because they keep watch over you as those who must give an account. Do this so that their work will be a joy, not a burden, for that would be of no benefit to you.
This is not easy. Our leaders are men just like us, and have personality quirks, and are not perfect. However, they are leaders because they have met the qualifications (not perfection), and are growing in Christ. They are striving to set an example of following Christ, and watching over the church for all to continue to grow in Christ.
To submit to these imperfect men means to live in proper roles. Just like we talked about before.
We are not to talk down about them, or refuse what they say. Rather we need to listen, catch the heart, and live under their authority as they follow Christ. We need to know that they are trying to care for us.
Also, we need to live in humility toward one another. We are not over one-another, jockeying for recognition or position. We are all using our gifts to help one another grow in Christ.
We need to watch out for our big enemy: Pride.
We need to stop trying to exalt ourselves, and lot God do the exaltation.

1 Peter 5:7, Hope

I love this verse, and have clung to it often in my life.
It is so easy to fret, and to worry about what goes on in our lives.

1 Peter 5:8, Alert and sober

1 Peter 5:9, Resistant

1 Peter 5:10
1 Peter 5:10 NIV
And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast.
Read 1 Peter in one sitting. Then read one chapter each day this week. Take time to pray before reading and ask the Spirit to renew your mind, and give you understanding.
As you read, look for what you need to thank God, for what attitudes or thoughts you should keep, for what commands or example of Christ you need to follow. Keep a list, and pray for the Spirit to work these things into you life daily.
Wake up each morning, and remember 1 Peter 1:13. Be alert: for what should you watch out? Be sober: how should you think about situations you expect to come up so you are prepared ahead of time.
As you read 1 Peter 5, ask God to show you how you can be a better example. Are you walking in humility? What would that look like in the different trying situations in your life?
Ask God to give you an opportunity to share your hope in Christ who is coming for you with someone each day this week.
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