1 Peter 2:11-12
The Apostle Peter is concerned about the conduct of the Christian community. How is the believer to live in the society in which they exist?
The Believer’s Conduct
-God has defined norms of conduct befitting his people.
-In many ways these norms are few – they are sharp lines of distinction that are to have a powerful influence on every kind of behavior.
-These are pivotal verses that seem to reach back to what has been said (be holy) and forward to some of the specific issues that are confronting the believers Peter is writing to.
The Nature of Peter’s Audience
· Beloved – believers, part of the family
· Strangers and aliens
o This world is not our home
o They may have been treated like outsiders
§ As such, the enemy is more obvious.
§ We wrestle not against flesh and blood – at times we can see our enemy.
§ The more dangerous is when we don’t see the enemy of the gospel in human form and shape.
§ Covert – spirit of darkness working in men.
o The fact that they are alien and strangers would mean that they would see things differently than those connected to the kingdom of the world or the realm of Satan.
§ Te conflict with the world they lived in was confirmation that they are the children of God – there is a subtlety here. We are worn down or become used to the thinking of the world and the way it influences our sinful nature.
The Content of Peter’s Instruction
The exhortation to abstain from fleshly passion
· These lusts wage war against your soul- they keep you from the joy of the Lord – from living in the power of the Holy Spirit
· They bring death and destruction to your life – literally and figuratively
o Peter says abstain – hold yourself back from
o Casual sex
o Alcohol, drugs
o Immoral sexual behavior of all sorts
o Not limited to sensual desire
o Inward cravings
In a nut shell: Avoid sinning
The exhortation to maintain excellent behavior
In a nutshell: Pursue good deeds
o Words we utter
o Economic decisions
o Recreational pursuits
o Vocational direction
The Aim of this Instruction
The slander received is false
And God is glorified
If they would spend time observing the behavior of the Christians rather than slandering them out of hatred or self-protection (as Nero did) then they would see the reality of their faith and glorify and honor God. If they don’t, the day of visitation will not be a good thing for them either.
Think of the lies spoken of Jesus – Pilate said he found no fault with him.
pastor joel Richards 7/13/08