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(1 Peter 4:12-18) Joyful Obedience When Suffering Burns us

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Though we are children of the King; Suffering is a sad reality of this world. This paragraph focuses specifically on how Christians should respond to insults and discrimination because of our Faith in Christ. But Peter encourages us to rejoice in suffering, obeying God, glorifying his name, ultimately entrusting our soul to God. There are many ways we respond sinfully, ignoring God, and seeking relief in this world. Yet, Peter commends our soul to the only being who can truly redeem us from the suffering and persecution we face in this world.

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INTRODUCTION:
I would like to begin by asking you to reflect on a question: How do you react when you suffer?
I want you to keep that in mind as we consider this text, but may I suggest that many people react to suffering in these ways.
They get
angry
bitter
envious
depressed
confused
overwhelmed
horrified
violent
silent
venting, complaining, and grumbling
obsession into work - they try to forget by distracting themselves.
selfish behavior - because I feel cruddy I deserve .
drinking
medications
And the list could go on.

Now this is the normal way people respond to suffering.
And we can understand why. Suffering people are hurting people.
- If you were one of the Victims of the recent Vegas shootings; wouldn’t you be hurting.
- If one of your friends or family members were one of the people hurt during the recent shooting, wouldn’t you be hurting.
So from a human perspective, we can understand why people might react in these ways.
But may I suggest our text tells how we can have a Christ-Exalting God-dependent response to suffering; especially when that suffering is persecution for believing in the name of Christ.
Now,
Let us consider how this text calls us to respond to suffering,

May say that is exactly the way we are not react to suffering.
certainly we ought to have compassion on the hurting. Yet, as Christians who enjoy the blessings of Christ’s resurrection we should be mindful for how to endure suffering in a way that Honors God.
I think of Peter’s own suffering.
1 Peter 4:12–18 ESV
12 Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery trial when it comes upon you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you. 13 But rejoice insofar as you share Christ’s sufferings, that you may also rejoice and be glad when his glory is revealed. 14 If you are insulted for the name of Christ, you are blessed, because the Spirit of glory and of God rests upon you. 15 But let none of you suffer as a murderer or a thief or an evildoer or as a meddler. 16 Yet if anyone suffers as a Christian, let him not be ashamed, but let him glorify God in that name. 17 For it is time for judgment to begin at the household of God; and if it begins with us, what will be the outcome for those who do not obey the gospel of God? 18 And “If the righteous is scarcely saved, what will become of the ungodly and the sinner?”
Shortly after had had seen Christ as a wr
1 Peter

May I suggest Peter tells us from this text,
Instead of sinfully responding to suffering,

PROPOSITION: We ought to Joyfully Obediently Entrust Ourselves to God in Suffering

Transitional Statement: And this text gives us 3 ways we should do this.

********************************************************Pray*************************************************
First, We ought to entrust ourselves to God by:

1. Rejoicing in Suffering.

1 Peter 4:12–13 ESV
12 Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery trial when it comes upon you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you. 13 But rejoice insofar as you share Christ’s sufferings, that you may also rejoice and be glad when his glory is revealed.
Our natural reaction to suffering is to be surprised by trials.
To consider them to be strange and out of place.
ILLUSTRATION:
And understandably.
We were not created to experience sin, disease, and death.
ILLUSTRATION:
A few years ago, a friend of mying had their father pass way quite suddenly. Within about a week their father went from perfectly healthy to on their death bed.
And the loss was surprising and unexpected.
And even to this day, that person struggles with the absence of their father.
As they go about their life; they remember the instruction, advice, and love of their father.
Most of us are that way. We are caught by surprise when we suffer. It doesn’t matter what that suffering is, we are in general are caught by surpise.
And because it sees strange and out of place - we react in a certain way.
ILLUSTRATION:
ILLUSTRATION:
Remember that question I asked you to consider earlier: How do you react when you suffer?
Remember that question I asked you to consider earlier.
I want you to consider the relationship of your natural reaction to v. 12 and 13.
And
Because we often are surprised by suffering, and find it out of place in our lives - many times we each react in our own instinctive way.
And that natural reaction is not always a Biblical reaction.
In fact - it may just inflame your sinful nature.
So, in advance each of us should consider why we should
- not be surprised by suffering
- and how we should Biblically react to suffering.
ILLUSTRATION:
A few years ago, a friend of mying had their father pass way quite suddenly. Within about a week their father went from perfectly healthy to on their death bed.
And the loss was surprising and unexpected.
And even to this day, that person struggles with the absence of their father.
As they go about their life; they remember the instruction, advice, and love of their father.
Peter does not give us the exact reason for not being surprised, so let’s do some theological imagination this morning.
When we suffer we questions why we suffer - and in various ways respond in confusion over suffering.
Why do we consider suffering strange?
Yet, Peter tells us not be surprised or consider it strange.
Why should we not consider suffering strange?
I have already alluded to one reason - God did not design or create humanity to experience sin and a sin cursed world.
- Because of the sin of Adam and Eve;
we suffer sin, disease, and death.
But I also believe were surprised because we fail to understand God sovereignty over suffering.
As we have considered this letter; we have come to understand that God allows suffering in our lives.
- Because of the sin of Adam and Eve;
we do suffer because of sin, disease, and death.
- Further,
as we have considered this letter; we have come to understand that God allows suffering in our lives.
He allowed it for Christ. ()
If God the Father could allow His son to suffer for Good; should we be surprised when in his goodness he wills for his adopted children to suffer
So he allows it for us. ()
1 Peter 3:1
This is why we so often react to
Peter commends us not to be surprised OR
1 Peter 3:17 ESV
17 For it is better to suffer for doing good, if that should be God’s will, than for doing evil.
Right there in the text we learn,
our Good, gracious, merciful God sometimes wills or plans for us to suffer.
Which means our Good gracious merciful God
Thus, we should not be surprised or consider it strange to suffer in this life.
But instead consider as Part Gods loving plan for us.
It is on this basis, that Peter can command us not to be surprised, but rejoice at suffering.
1 Peter 4:13 ESV
13 But rejoice insofar as you share Christ’s sufferings, that you may also rejoice and be glad when his glory is revealed.
1 Peter 5:13 ESV
13 She who is at Babylon, who is likewise chosen, sends you greetings, and so does Mark, my son.
What is the right heart attitude we should have during suffering: We ought to rejoice!
1 Peter 5:13
What is the right heart attitude we should have during suffering.
We ought to rejoice!
ILLUSTRATION:
But isn’t that difficult to consider?
I am faced with an overwhelming, fearful, hurtful struggle .... and I am supposed to rejoice.
Consider how often people laid off from work rejoice?
Consider how often people in motor accidents rejoice?
Consider how often people in the hospital rejoice?
Consider how often people at funeral’s rejoice?
Let’s be honest here; doesn’t that sound ridiculous?
In the message this morning I am focusing on how we should be responding to suffering, but Peter has Sprinkled the why to the how throughout this passage.
So why should we do the ridiculous:
1 Peter 4:13 ESV
13 But rejoice insofar as you share Christ’s sufferings, that you may also rejoice and be glad when his glory is revealed.
“glory is revealed” or as the NASB translates, “the revelation of his glory” refers to the wonderful nature of Christ return,
when he will be revealed.
A common NT saying, speaking of Christ physical return was to speak of the revealing of Christ’s glory.
With that understanding,
lets consider what this passage tells about why we should rejoice in present suffering.
When Peter said this,
He probably was recalling the teaching of Jesus found in . Notice the similar wording and context.
Matthew 5:12 ESV
12 Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you.
In other words, Peter is saying this;
rejoice now when you suffer;
because your suffering now >>>>>>>>will result in greater eternal reward when Christ is revealed.
And may I say this context suggests this especially true when we suffer for being believers in Christ.
So Why should we do the ridiculous? - rejoice when we hurt because of suffering- Because we know that we will receive greater eternal rewards when Christ returns.
He probably was recalling the teaching of Jesus found in .
Matthew 5:12 ESV
12 Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you.
”12
So why
Understand,
Again as reminder,
- Investments for peace and tranquility in this world has a reward, but perishes when Christ returns.
- Eternal investments, including faithful obedience in suffering; will result in imperishable gain that will last forever.
Invest in eternity through suffering, by rejoicing when we suffer.
Which means our Good gracious merciful God …
Why? - Appear at Glory
Why? - Appear at Glory
We ought to entrust ourselves to God by: Rejoicing in Suffering.
2ndly, Entrust yourself to God by:

2. Suffering in Obedience ()

1 Peter 4:15–18 ESV
15 But let none of you suffer as a murderer or a thief or an evildoer or as a meddler. 16 Yet if anyone suffers as a Christian, let him not be ashamed, but let him glorify God in that name. 17 For it is time for judgment to begin at the household of God; and if it begins with us, what will be the outcome for those who do not obey the gospel of God? 18 And “If the righteous is scarcely saved, what will become of the ungodly and the sinner?”
1 Peter 4:14–18 ESV
14 If you are insulted for the name of Christ, you are blessed, because the Spirit of glory and of God rests upon you. 15 But let none of you suffer as a murderer or a thief or an evildoer or as a meddler. 16 Yet if anyone suffers as a Christian, let him not be ashamed, but let him glorify God in that name. 17 For it is time for judgment to begin at the household of God; and if it begins with us, what will be the outcome for those who do not obey the gospel of God? 18 And “If the righteous is scarcely saved, what will become of the ungodly and the sinner?”
1 Peter 4:14–15 ESV
14 If you are insulted for the name of Christ, you are blessed, because the Spirit of glory and of God rests upon you. 15 But let none of you suffer as a murderer or a thief or an evildoer or as a meddler.
To often we equate the natural consequences of our choices with God’s purpose in our lives.
ILLUSTRATION:
1 Peter
I remember having a buddy who was arrested for DUI.
He was a professing believer in Christ, yet fail into the snare of alchol
When the natural financial, work, and driving consequences came into effect. He declared, it was God’s plan for him to suffer all along.
Yet was it?
Certainly, God purposes us to suffer at times, even suffering for his name.
But that is far different from suffering because of our sin.
God allows us to suffer for our sin because of his goodness; as a means of helping us purify our lives.
Yet may that never be confused with what God truly desires for us.
God never desires for us to sin.
And God never desires for us to suffer because of sin.
In fact, may I suggest that sin distracts us from the purpose God saved us for.
Earlier in this book, Peter suggested that our purpose was ultimately to declare the excellencies of God.
1 Peter 2:9 ESV
9 But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light.
1 Pet
So when we sin and suffer for it; may we certainly not believe it was God’s ordained plan; but God’s work to restore us to his true ordained plan.
Application:
Now consider the struggle the churches in N. Turkey are going through.
They are being discriminated against.
- Discriminated against because of their purified lives. ()
- Insulted because of their belief in Christ. (v. 14)
Which means, like most people; they struggle with submission to authority; they have anger, malice, and bitterness.
And we can understand their reaction.
For Example:
- How quick do we become angry when someone smears are good name because we choose to obey Christ.
- How quick do we become angry when the government dares to take one of our endowed, inalienable rights.
How qui
Understandably, they struggled with obeying God in the midst of being wronged for doing what is right - believing and honoring Christ.
So Peter encourages them with a reminder of how God has blessed believers in Christ with the Holy Spirit.
Our text states,
“you are blessed, because the Spirit of glory and of God rests upon you”
“the Spirit of glory and of God rests upon you” is a quotation of .
Now for a Jew, they would have immediately thought of the benefits that would have came with the Holy Spirit resting upon them.
Isaiah 11:2–3 ESV
2 And the Spirit of the Lord shall rest upon him, the Spirit of wisdom and understanding, the Spirit of counsel and might, the Spirit of knowledge and the fear of the Lord. 3 And his delight shall be in the fear of the Lord. He shall not judge by what his eyes see, or decide disputes by what his ears hear,
Isaiah 11:2-3
So what are the benefits -
Quotation of . This reference speaks of Christ, but that same Spirit (to lesser extent) will rest with us. The includes: the Spirit of wisdom and understanding, the Spirit of counsel and might, the Spirit of knowledge and the fear of the Lord, And his delight shall be in the fear of the Lord. (). Important to note the connection to the purification of the believer in .
the Spirit of wisdom and understanding
the Spirit of counsel and might
the Spirit of knowledge
the fear of the Lord
And his delight shall be in the fear of the Lord.
So we ought to obediently endure ill-willed suffering.
- God has blessed you by giving you the Holy Spirit - which is the blessing that allows you to actually live a life obedient to God.
God has blessed you by giving you the
- Because the Holy Spirit rests upon us; we should be able to live obediently even when we are harmed viciously by others.
3rdly, we ought to entrust ourselves to God by:
Someone claiming that God has allowed suffering,
It is true that God allows all suffering. But their suffering is brought on by sin.
You suffer because you sinned.
Just because God saved us; doesn’t mean his loving hand also removes the consequences of sin.

3. Unshamefully Glorifying God in Suffering ()

1 Peter 4:16–18 ESV
16 Yet if anyone suffers as a Christian, let him not be ashamed, but let him glorify God in that name. 17 For it is time for judgment to begin at the household of God; and if it begins with us, what will be the outcome for those who do not obey the gospel of God? 18 And “If the righteous is scarcely saved, what will become of the ungodly and the sinner?”
1 Peter 4:16-18
describes humanities hatred against God.
Psalm 2:2–3 ESV
2 The kings of the earth set themselves, and the rulers take counsel together, against the Lord and against his Anointed, saying, 3 “Let us burst their bonds apart and cast away their cords from us.”
EXHORTATION:
Because humanity is set in hatred against God - We ought not to be surprised when we suffer.
May I suggest,
If we are truly loving others and are declaring the excellencies of Christ - we ought to expect conflict with those around us who hate God.
As v. 4 indicates, being a Christian will rub others the wrong way and incite anger against us.
CLARIFICATION:
Further,
What is right behavior in response to persecution is often right behavior for suffering in general. So though our passage today speaks much about suffering because of our belief - it in principle also addresses suffering in general.
Peter encourages us to unshamefully glorify God in our suffering.
1 Peter 4:16
1 Peter 4:16 ESV
16 Yet if anyone suffers as a Christian, let him not be ashamed, but let him glorify God in that name.
Doesn’t it seem odd for a Christian to be ashamed of his savior?
When we consider the great sacrifice, steadfast love, and incredible riches found in the Gospel; then we ought never to be ashamed of Christ.
When we consider the great sacrifice, steadfast love, and incredible riches found in the Gospel; then we ought never to be ashamed of Christ.
But being a Social outcast is difficult to endure.
Even in the great freedoms we enjoy as Americans; we still feel the social pressure towards sin and rejection of Christ.
ILLUSTRATION:
I remember being a young Christian - having only been saved for a couple of years when I entered the Navy.
I remember feeling the social pressure to enjoy sin.
The ridicule for believing in what many supposed to be a false Gospel.
Being Insulted when I refused to partake in the sins that Sailors are so known for.
And I confess; at times feeling ashamed of the Gospel and doubting the great salvation I have received.
But we don
May I say; we have no reason to feel ashamed for believing in Christ.
May I say; we have no reason to feel ashamed for believing in Christ.
Why? - In way of encouragement, Peter reminds us of what happens to those who have rejected Christ and insult his people.
1 Peter 4:17–18 ESV
17 For it is time for judgment to begin at the household of God; and if it begins with us, what will be the outcome for those who do not obey the gospel of God? 18 And “If the righteous is scarcely saved, what will become of the ungodly and the sinner?”
With 2 questions Peter reminds us we are on the Lord’s side.
We may feel the social pressures that cause to feel ashamed of the Gospel; but Peter reminds us that one day, the wicked who make us feel ashamed will be on the side of judgement.
When consider the end of human history- we realize we have no reason to be ashamed of the Gospel.
Though we may be ridiculed and insulted for our belief and obedience to Christ - may we consider eternity and do what this text says; glorify Christ.
Though we may be ridiculed and insulted for our belief and obedience to Christ - may we do what this text says; glorify Christ.
That is, Glorify Christ through the suffering and ridicule that we may receive in this life.
To glorify God in suffering; is to bring honor to his name.
We do this when we obey his commands.
We do this when we proclaim the excellencies of Christ’s work in our lives.
We do this when we lead others to the Gospel.
We do this when we obey his commands.
One of the great purposes of the church - is to praise and glorify the name of Jesus Christ.
If this morning,
we were privilaged to have before us
Entrust God by:
May we do that when he blesses us to the point we do not know what to say.
May we do that when he allow us to suffer to the point we do not know what to say.
As tells us,
1 Corinthians 10:31 ESV
31 So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.
May we entrust ourselves to God in suffering by unshamefully glorifying God.
4thly, We ought to Entrust ourselves to God by:

4. Rightly Responding to Suffering.

ILLUSTRATIONS:
There are many ways people try to cope with suffering.
Many times they try to suppress their pain.
ILLUSTRATIONS:
Maybe by binge eating or drinking.
Becoming a workaholic.
Our World provides many solutions for
Absorbing ourselves into hobbies.
Sometimes were illogical by just living in denial
But they are all ways to avoid dealing with the suffering we experience.
ILLUSTRATION:
I read one Psychology article whose suggestion was to purposely feel the pain instead.
That sounds like a great solution.
Except,
Isn't feeling pain the leading cause of depression, panic attacks, and paranoia.
And how does that work for the veteran who wakes up everyday with a Spinal cord injury that can never go away. He hurts just to stand up out of bed,
but just feel the pain. Focus on that. That will make you better.
That will make you better.
[https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/meditation-modern-life/201410/the-three-ways-we-deal-or-not-suffering]
That the grand solution of Psychology.
That the grand solution of Psychology.
You
Praise God there is a better solution to suffering.
Peter’s solution - God.
God is Peter’s solution.
God is Peter’s solution.
1 Peter 4:19 ESV
19 Therefore let those who suffer according to God’s will entrust their souls to a faithful Creator while doing good.
Were told
Why? - Rejectors will receive Greater Condemnation.
Peter says, those who are suffering by God’s will - entrust your soul to the faithful creator.
Entrust is the idea of giving someone something to someone for safe keeping.
ILLUSTRATION:
Entrust is the idea of giving someone something for safe keeping.
ILLUSTRATION:
Just like a child entrusts themselves to their parents.
I mean, what does Eli, just assume his parents will do.
Provide for him
Protect him.
Make the sores all better.
Eli may not know what entrust is, but instinctively entrusts his soul to his parents.
He knows that his parents will keep him safe.
That is exactly what we should be doing.
We could spend a great deal a time talking about who God is.
But may we say in brief summary -
God is merciful, gracious, good, kind, and unconditionally loving father; who is also the all-powerful, all-knowing, all-wise God who created and sustains the world.
And just like Eli entrust himself to his parents,
We ought entrust ourselves to our magnificent God who has willed us to suffer in this way.
We ought to entrust our souls to God, knowing he is able to keep it safe.
And because he died to redeem us from slavery to sin; we should be entrusting ourselves to God in the midst of suffering, faithfully obeying his commands.
Peter said it well,
1 Peter 4:19 ESV
19 Therefore let those who suffer according to God’s will entrust their souls to a faithful Creator while doing good.
1 Peter
CONCLUSION:
So I began with asking you a question; How do you react when you suffer?
We often react sinfully, being driven by our fear and discomfort.
But Peter tells how we can respond in way that is obedient and trusting in God.
But Peter tells how we can respond in way that is obedient and trusting in God.
According to our text,
PROPOSITION: We ought to Entrust Ourselves to God in Suffering
Transitional Statement: And this text gives us 3 ways we should do this.
By
1. Rejoicing in Suffering.
2. Suffering in Obedience ()
3. Unshamefully Glorifying God in Suffering ()
4. Rightly Responding to Suffering.
We can live in fear, and pain;
We can try to cover up that pain and fear with things of this world - only find us still living in fear and pain.
or we can overcome that fear by looking to the only being in all the universe who can truly -
bring peace and satisfaction for our soul.
and who can truly change the circumstances we live in.
That change might be today Or it might be when he returns;
but one day we will be able to rejoice in his incredible healing;
That is spiritual and physical redemption from the sin, and pain, and hurt of this world.
May we entrust our souls to God, rejoicing and glorifying him through suffering.
1 Peter 4:19
1 Peter 4:19 ESV
19 Therefore let those who suffer according to God’s will entrust their souls to a faithful Creator while doing good.
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