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1 Peter  •  Sermon  •  Submitted
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1 Peter 2:9–10 ESV
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. Once you were not a people, but now you are God’s people; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.
1 Peter 2:
Peter begins these verses with a contrast and continues with a description. Peter begins by explaining the difference between those he had just described in verse 8, and those he is about to define in verse 9.
He describes in verse 8 the people to whom Christ has become a stumbling stone. Those who stumble because they disobey the word as they were destined to do. This is probably one of the most shocking verses in all of Scriptures when we consider those that who are destined to reject Christ,
Those who are in darkness that will never see the Light.
Those who are bound in sin and will never be set free.
Those who are given over to their reprobate minds and will not receive the grace of God.
Those who are slaves to sin and will never be saved.
Those who are children of wrath and will never become a child of God.
As hard as this is for us to understand for the believer the but in verse 9 brings us the amazing truth of God’s assurance for His church, for His people, for those whom he has predestined, those whom he has called, those whom he has justified, and those who He glorified!
Notice the shift from the condemned to the called out,
Verse 9, But
This is not where we will end this isn’t where the story ends. Peter doesn’t stop with the destiny of the disobedient. He now turns to the person, purpose, and conversion of God’s people.
1 Peter A People for God

These honorary titles come from Exodus 19, when God constituted Israel as a nation, and Isaiah 43, when God promised to reestablish Israel after the exile. These are foundational statements about Israel. By applying them to his church, Peter tells Gentiles that the privileges of Israel are now theirs. They may be aliens and exiles, cast out and rejected by their former people, but God has taken them in.

The first truth Peter teaches us here about God’s people the church is,

I. Who you are as the Church.

But you are a
Peter uses the word you 7 times in verse 9 and 10. He is speaking directly to a specific people when he writes this letter. He is speaking to God’s people those who God has chosen, converted, comforts, and called for a purpose. Let’s consider the you he is writing to.
Verse 1 To those who are elect exiles of the Dispersion
Verse 3 To those who he has caused to be born again
Verse 4 To those who have an inheritance kept in heaven for you.
Verse 6 To those who rejoice through various trials.
Verse 8 To you who have not seen him, yet you love him. You who believe in him and rejoice with a joy inexpressible.
Verse 9 To you who the prophets prophesied about the grace that was to be yours.
Verse 13 To you who have your hope fully set on Jesus Christ.
Verse 15 To you who he called you also to be holy in all your conduct.
Verse 17 To you who call on Him as Father
Verse 18 To you who know you were ransomed from the futile ways of your forefathers.
Verse 20 To you who Christ was manifest for the sake of you.
Verse 21 To you who have your faith and hope in God.
Verse 22 To you who have had your souls purified by your obedience to the truth.
Verse 23 To you who have been born again
Verse 2:2 To you who long for the pure spiritual milk who are growing up into salvation. To you who have tasted that the Lord is good!
Verse 2:4 To you who have come to Him. To you being built up into a spiritual house and holy priesthood!
Verse 2:7 To you who believe!
Do you see who Peter is about to describe? God’s chosen people His church! He is about to define who the church is, who the individual you’s are that make up his people.
Notice the first
He writes but, you are a,

a. Chosen race

From the beginning God’s people has been a chosen race. There were never tryouts to become God’s people. God just graciously chose and elected His people.
Deuteronomy 7:6 ESV
“For you are a people holy to the Lord your God. The Lord your God has chosen you to be a people for his treasured possession, out of all the peoples who are on the face of the earth.
But we know the story, God’s people rejected the cornerstone, God’s people refused to believe that Jesus was the Messiah. Therefore God opened the door to the gentiles. God grafted in a new people.

11 So I ask, did they stumble in order that they might fall? By no means! Rather, through their trespass salvation has come to the Gentiles, so as to make Israel jealous. 12 Now if their trespass means riches for the world, and if their failure means riches for the Gentiles, how much more will their full inclusion mean!

13 Now I am speaking to you Gentiles. Inasmuch then as I am an apostle to the Gentiles, I magnify my ministry 14 in order somehow to make my fellow Jews jealous, and thus save some of them. 15 For if their rejection means the reconciliation of the world, what will their acceptance mean but life from the dead? 16 If the dough offered as firstfruits is holy, so is the whole lump, and if the root is holy, so are the branches.

17 But if some of the branches were broken off, and you, although a wild olive shoot, were grafted in among the others and now share in the nourishing root of the olive tree, 18 do not be arrogant toward the branches. If you are, remember it is not you who support the root, but the root that supports you. 19 Then you will say, “Branches were broken off so that I might be grafted in.” 20 That is true. They were broken off because of their unbelief, but you stand fast through faith. So do not become proud, but fear. 21 For if God did not spare the natural branches, neither will he spare you. 22 Note then the kindness and the severity of God: severity toward those who have fallen, but God’s kindness to you, provided you continue in his kindness.

Paul tells us that the Israel is not cut off, forever, but the gentiles have been grafted in to make Israel jealous. In other words we were chosen, and grafted in by the grace of God. This is not so that we would boast in being grafted in but that we were brought in because of God’s mercy and kindness. Because we are a chosen people we understand the love and wrath of God. Therefore we still have a holy fear or a trembling trust which drives us humbly to the Father and passionately to the world.
This leads us to the next truth of who the people of God are.
You are a chosen race, a

b. Royal priesthood

You and I were of no reputation, now we are royalty
You and I were not noble, now we are called to nobility.
You and I were in the kingdom of darkness, now we are adopted by the King of Glory!
We have not been brought into royalty though just for our own enjoyment! We have not been given access to the King and his kingdom just so we can live the good life and wallow in the wealth of God, but instead so that we can glorify Him and enjoy him forever. Therefore, we are a royal priesthood.
priesthood n. — the body of religious practitioners invested with ministerial or priestly authority.
We have been given the authority and responsibility to serve the King. To serve among God’s people, to minister the gospel. Before Christ came, the priests had responsibility to go into the Holy Place and offer sacrifices, sprinkle the blood on the altar, and then make atonement for the people.
But then Christ came, offered the once for all sacrifice so that we might all become a kingdom of priests. This doesn’t mean we all become pastors and preachers, but it does mean we all can serve the King! We can all invest in the ministry of the gospel of making Christ known of supporting His great commission!
So far we have seen the church is a chosen race, a royal priesthood, next Peter writes, you are a....

c. Holy nation

We know Israel as God’s people was called to be a holy nation. They were called out of all of the other nations and dedicated or consecrated to the service of God. They were to be set apart, different, and distinct from the other nations around them.
How did God set them apart? He gave them the law and called them to look and live differently than the other nations. He set them up under His sovereign rule!
Exodus 19:6 ESV
and you shall be to me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation.’ These are the words that you shall speak to the people of Israel.”
What about us gentiles? How are we to be a holy nation?
John 17:19 ESV
And for their sake I consecrate myself, that they also may be sanctified in truth.
John 17:9 ESV
I am praying for them. I am not praying for the world but for those whom you have given me, for they are yours.
We are sanctified, set apart, made holy in the truth. In the truth of Jesus Christ, the truth of the gospel of Jesus Christ. When we believe in him we are made holy, we become children of God, children of light. Through repentance and faith we become citizens of heaven and partakers of the kingdom of God.
Upon this positional holiness when God grants us the gift of faith and repentance we spend the rest of our lives repenting and believing. Studying the truth of God and being set free from the bonds of sin and death. We mortify sin in the power of the Holy Spirit as we are made holy, set apart, and consecrated for the glory of God!
So you, the church, a chosen race, a royal priesthood, and holy nations are also a,

d. People for His own possession

Do you realize you and I are not our own? We were bought with a prices? Do you think I am making that up?
1 Corinthians 6:19–20 ESV
Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.
Remember Josh’s sermon a few weeks ago? Slavery to Slavery? We have never been our own. We have always been under the rule and dominion of another master. Either we are slaves to the master of sin, the flesh, and the devil. Or we were redeemed from the domain of darkness and purchased with the blood of Christ! Jesus Christ....
Titus 2:14 ESV
who gave himself for us to redeem us from all lawlessness and to purify for himself a people for his own possession who are zealous for good works.
Do you see it? God bought us with the blood of His Son, so that we might serve in His priesthood. But notice what Paul tells Titus we are not saved to serve reluctantly but zealously. We ought to be excited about be bought from our former master and be fired up about serving His people and preaching the gospel to the nations! We ought to spend all week longing to come together and worship and work with the people of God!
Ephesians 2:8–10 ESV
For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.
God has chosen you, His church before the foundation of the world!
God has pulled you out of your poverty made you a royal priesthood.
God has consecrated you and given you citizenship in a holy nation!
God has purchased you as a people for his possession.
What great and awesome news, what powerful gospel truths these are! This brings us to our second point, as the church,

II. What you are to do.

Notice the little three word phrase, after these honorary titles?
that you may,
God has done all of these things in His people for one purpose. This is purpose is what? That you may,

a. Proclaim the excellencies of Him.

You know what I love about this passage? Peter doesn’t give us a long to do list. He give us one mission, one purpose, one primary task, to proclaim the excellencies of Him. Now we know this is not the only imperative command in the Scriptures, but we can say with confidence this is the primary command in Scripture.
Paul tells the Corinthians,
1 Corinthians 1:17 ESV
For Christ did not send me to baptize but to preach the gospel, and not with words of eloquent wisdom, lest the cross of Christ be emptied of its power.
1 Corinthians 2:2 ESV
For I decided to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ and him crucified.
1 Timothy 4:1–2 ESV
Now the Spirit expressly says that in later times some will depart from the faith by devoting themselves to deceitful spirits and teachings of demons, through the insincerity of liars whose consciences are seared,
1 Corinthians 2:
1 Timothy 4:
2 Timothy 4:1–2 ESV
I charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who is to judge the living and the dead, and by his appearing and his kingdom: preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, and exhort, with complete patience and teaching.
Everything we do as the church ought to be Christ centered, Christ exalting, and be motivated by proclaiming the excellencies of Him!
Our Sunday gatherings, SS, Corporate Worship, and Evening worship ought to be focused on Prayer in the name of Christ, Preaching the name of Christ, and singing of the glories of Christ!
Our midweek service ought to be about Christ.
PM sports, Mission Trips, BBQ’s, fellowships, workdays, ought to all be an opportunity to proclaim the excellence of Christ!
This brings us to the third point,

III. Why you are to do it.

a. You were called out of darkness into His marvelous light.

Can you think of a better reason to proclaim Christ than the truth that you and I have been called out of darkness? Let’s think about the imagery of darkness, the imagery of night Peter is alluding to here.
There is much evil and wickedness that happens in the darkness. That is why we have terms such as night life, night clubs, nightmares…When you hear those things do you think about holy and wholesome things or things of wickedness.
I will never forget my mom saying nothing good happens after midnight! In other words she was saying there is no need of you being out late because of the things that happen under the guise of darkness.
You and I were all in the dark, we were people of the night. Now the level of wickedness we were involved in may vary but the overarching truth is still the same. Until we saw the marvelous light of Christ, we had no spiritual sight, no spiritual light, and were no spiritual hope! But praise God,
Colossians 1:12–13 ESV
giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in light. He has delivered us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son,
I love this verse we were,
delivered from the domain of darkness....
transferred to the kingdom of his beloved Son!
As if deliverance from the domain of darkness was not enough,

b. Once you were not a people, but now you are God’s people.

Israel knew this truth in a special way. Until they were chosen by God, until God called them out they were just a bunch of idolatrous pagans. But what about us. Before you came to know Christ, before you were transferred into the kingdom of Christ, were you a people? Or were you and I just lost, individuals, wandering persons?
But, when God saved us he made us His people. He called us out of darkness and assembled us together as the people of God. He doesn’t have us split up by ethnicity, socioeconomic status, or as we have seen even this morning age! We are all God’s people called for God’s purpose, exalting His Son!
I think the reason the church is so weak today is we have given in to this idea that we need all these groups. We need a black church, a white church, a poor church a rich church, a youth class, a college class, a young couples class, a single adult class.....Do you see what happens we reduce the people of God to small groups and splinters, factions, and cliques happen.
Remember we are in the midst of a spiritual war. Do you want an army that is broken up in a bunch of little groups or do you want an army that comes together in large numbers, who knows one another, locks arm and arm with one another, and goes into battle together with all the spiritual power we can muster filled with the Spirit of God!
We the church are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession are to proclaim the excellencies of Christ because we have been called into his marvelous light, been made a people of God, and finally because,

c. Once you had not recieved mercy, but now you have recieved mercy.

Peter ends for 10 where he started verse 3,
1 Peter 1:3 ESV
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! According to his great mercy, he has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,
Before we recieved the mercy of God in the new birth we stood under the wrath of God. We were headed for hell with the hammer down. We were going to recieved exactly what we deserved as those who were under the domain of darkness.
We were outside of God’s mercy, instead of receiving his loving kindness were going to receive his just punishment for our sin. Instead of being born again by the mercy of God we were being mastered by prince of the power of darkness, dead in our trespasses and sin!
But blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! He poured His mercy out on us.
He showed us his loving kindness in that while we were yet sinners Christ died for us.
He showed his mercy to us in that he sent a preacher of the gospel to us that we might hear the gospel.
He sent His Spirit to us that He might convict us of our sin, enable us to hear and see the truth of the gospel of Jesus Christ.
He by His mercy removed our heart of stone and replaced it with a heart of flesh.
He by His mercy according to His will broke our will of disobedience that we might repent and believe in the gospel of His Son!
Spurgeon explained,

Yes, I think no exercise will be more profitable by way of expressing our gratitude than remembering what we used to be before the hand of God was laid upon us in love. If all of us did not run to an excess of riot in our outward lives, yet some of us did, and others who were kept from gross outward sins had nevertheless a very sink of corruption within our nature.

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