Faithlife Sermons

Christian Hope - Part 2

Covid-19  •  Sermon  •  Submitted
0 ratings
· 4 views
Notes
Transcript

Scripture Reading

1 Peter 1:13–21 NIV84
13 Therefore, prepare your minds for action; be self-controlled; set your hope fully on the grace to be given you when Jesus Christ is revealed. 14 As obedient children, do not conform to the evil desires you had when you lived in ignorance. 15 But just as he who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do; 16 for it is written: “Be holy, because I am holy.” 17 Since you call on a Father who judges each man’s work impartially, live your lives as strangers here in reverent fear. 18 For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your forefathers, 19 but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect. 20 He was chosen before the creation of the world, but was revealed in these last times for your sake. 21 Through him you believe in God, who raised him from the dead and glorified him, and so your faith and hope are in God.
1 Peter 1:1–21 NIV84
1 Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, To God’s elect, strangers in the world, scattered throughout Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia and Bithynia, 2 who have been chosen according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through the sanctifying work of the Spirit, for obedience to Jesus Christ and sprinkling by his blood: Grace and peace be yours in abundance. 3 Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, 4 and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade—kept in heaven for you, 5 who through faith are shielded by God’s power until the coming of the salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last time. 6 In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. 7 These have come so that your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may be proved genuine and may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed. 8 Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy, 9 for you are receiving the goal of your faith, the salvation of your souls. 10 Concerning this salvation, the prophets, who spoke of the grace that was to come to you, searched intently and with the greatest care, 11 trying to find out the time and circumstances to which the Spirit of Christ in them was pointing when he predicted the sufferings of Christ and the glories that would follow. 12 It was revealed to them that they were not serving themselves but you, when they spoke of the things that have now been told you by those who have preached the gospel to you by the Holy Spirit sent from heaven. Even angels long to look into these things. 13 Therefore, prepare your minds for action; be self-controlled; set your hope fully on the grace to be given you when Jesus Christ is revealed. 14 As obedient children, do not conform to the evil desires you had when you lived in ignorance. 15 But just as he who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do; 16 for it is written: “Be holy, because I am holy.” 17 Since you call on a Father who judges each man’s work impartially, live your lives as strangers here in reverent fear. 18 For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your forefathers, 19 but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect. 20 He was chosen before the creation of the world, but was revealed in these last times for your sake. 21 Through him you believe in God, who raised him from the dead and glorified him, and so your faith and hope are in God.

Introduction

In our previous message, we considered together the wonderful hope that is ours as Christians. We looked at the salvation that is ours in Christ Jesus, and what a profound privilege it is for us to be the recipients or beneficiaries of such a great hope, and wonderful salvation.
We were reminded by Peter that this world in which we live as sojourners is going to bring us much difficulty, suffering and trial. These are various trials that we will face - some will be as a result of our professed faith in Jesus Christ, and the persecution that will inevitably come as a result of that. But other trials will face us in this life also - various kinds of trials. In all of these trials and sufferings, inasmuch as we will suffer through them, and inasmuch as we will have a measure of grief through those struggles, we are those who are to live with our eyes fixed on eternity, and the hope that awaits us.
Peter reminded the Christians to whom he wrote that they believe in Christ, and thus are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy. We should be careful that we do not draw a false dichotomy between grief in our struggles, and the joy that is ours as Christians. Indeed, a Christian enduring grief and suffering can do so yet expressing great joy at the greater reality of the salvation that is theirs in Christ, and the hope that there is a day that will come in which that suffering will be over for good.
That said, how we live our lives in light of that hope is important. And while Peter wrote to encourage the believers that were scattered in exile, he also wrote to them in order to spur them on, in light of the severe persecution and suffering that they were facing, to live in a particular manner in this life.
As Christians, we are called to live with holy conduct. That holy conduct is not only applicable when times are going well, and life is easy, and there are no struggles or burdens. Rather, it is even particularly in those trying times in life that we are all the more to live holy lives.
Not that one can draw a distinction between more holy and less holy times - all our lives are to be holy. But that is so even when we face struggles. That’s the real challenge by Peter in this letter.
And so, the main subject that we will thus consider in this message this evening is...

3. A Purifying Hope (vv. 13-21)

The hope with which Christians live is a purifying hope. In other words, the hope that we have will lead us to live a particular kind of life, and the kind life that it leads us to is a holy and pure life.
As Peter continues this letter to the believers here, he begins this section with the word “therefore.” So what he is about to exhort these believers to do in these verses that follow, is founded upon and based upon the great hope and salvation that is theirs in Christ.
For us as Christians, these words are just as pertinent to us as today as they were to the believers that Peter wrote to. As Christians today, in light of this glorious gospel, in light of the hope that is ours, the salvation that is ours and will be ours when Christ returns, we are called to live a life of holiness and purity.
As we consider this, notice the exhortations by Peter here.
Firstly, we see that this purifying hope requires of us, our most diligent efforts.

3.1. It requires our diligently prepared minds (v.13)

In this verse, Peter issues three imperatives, three commands to the believers in exile that are facing this suffering while setting their eyes on this great hope.
The first imperative / command is this:

3.1.1. Prepare your minds for action

In light of this great salvation hope, we must prepare our minds for action. This translated in the King James version as “Gird up the loins of your minds.” It evokes a picture of preparing for strenuous exercise.
In , the Israelites were told to eat the Passover meal with their loins girded. They were to be prepared and ready, because was going to deliver them, and they were thus to be in a state of readiness.
preparing your minds for action...
It is this same state of readiness that is to true of our minds as Christians. Our minds are to be properly engaged in Biblical Truth. We are to fill ourselves with a knowledge of Christ. We are to be using our minds as we engage with the world around us, so that we may know how to respond in a God-honouring manner.
preparing your minds for action...
In the Gospel of Luke, Christ taught his disciples that they should remain ready and waiting for the Saviour and His return.
Luke 12:35-
Luke 12:35 NIV84
35 “Be dressed ready for service and keep your lamps burning,
Luke 12:35–36 NIV84
35 “Be dressed ready for service and keep your lamps burning, 36 like men waiting for their master to return from a wedding banquet, so that when he comes and knocks they can immediately open the door for him.
Flowing out of this imperative, and very much linked to it, Peter goes on to say that we should…
The second imperative from the text is:

3.1.2. Be Self-Controlled

To be self-controlled here means to be sober-minded. It means that our minds are fully under control. Nothing should be so controlling our minds that would distract us from the focused direction of attaining to the salvation that is ours in Christ. It is only through a disciplined mind, a mind that is controlled by the Spirit of God, that we as Christians should live our lives.
Later on in this letter, Peter will write to these believers:
being sober-minded...
1 Peter 4:7 NIV84
7 The end of all things is near. Therefore be clear minded and self-controlled so that you can pray.
A mind that is distracted, a mind that is the power and control of worldly influences, is not going to be focused on this great salvation, and is not going to aid us in our progress in the faith. So long as our minds are not sober, so long as we do not have minds that are properly controlled by Biblical thinking practices, we open ourselves up to temptation and waywardness.
Peter writes...
1 Peter 5:8 NIV84
8 Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.
In the spiritual battle that is being waged in this world, be assured dear friends that there is an adversary that seeks to lead us away from our Saviour. He seeks to draw us out of close fellowship with Christ. It is a spiritual battle, and our minds, focused and alert minds, are essential if we would remain steadfast in the faith.
Paul also wrote much on the importance of a self-controlled life and a disciplined mind.
1 Thessalonians 5:6 NIV84
6 So then, let us not be like others, who are asleep, but let us be alert and self-controlled.
1 Thessalonians 5:8 NIV84
8 But since we belong to the day, let us be self-controlled, putting on faith and love as a breastplate, and the hope of salvation as a helmet.
And then to Timothy, his young protege, he wrote:
2 Timothy 4:5 NIV84
5 But you, keep your head in all situations, endure hardship, do the work of an evangelist, discharge all the duties of your ministry.
Christians, are we living self-controlled lives? Are we being sober-minded? Are we engaging our minds in the task of working out our salvation.
In spiritualism there is an emphasis on emptying the mind. It is said that you can attain to a state of peacefulness and relaxation through these emptying exercises. The whole eastern mysticism is finding its way into Christianity. Friends, we are not called to empty our minds, but to take control of them. We are not called to empty our minds, but to fill them with a knowledge of Christ.
This takes diligent effort on our part.
The third imperative from verse 13 is that you should...

3.1.3. Set your hope fully on the grace to be revealed

Paul has just spoken in detail about the great salvation and hope that is in Christ. He’s emphasized the glorious realities of the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the fact that even angels longed to look into these things. He now calls believers to “set your hope fully on the grace that will be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ.”
In our lives as Christians, we tend to have divided affections. We tend to set our hopes on a diverse array of things in the hope that through some, or all of them, we will be satisfied, and we will find contentment.
But the call of the believer is not to have a divided hope. Rather, Peter says here that believers are to set their hope fully, entirely, without distraction, on the grace to be revealed. That which propels us forward in our lives as Christians is the hope that lies ahead. That which encourages us, that which leads us to persevere, by the grace of God, is the grace to be revealed.
Speak slowly! …
We are called to be radically future-focused.
This is a call to complete trust in what God has done, but also on what he will still do in the future.
We’ve considered that this Christian hope requires our diligently prepared minds. But we see also that this hope requires...

3.2. It requires our holy conduct (vv. 14-16)

Peter begins in verse 14 by saying:
1 Peter 1:14 NIV84
14 As obedient children, do not conform to the evil desires you had when you lived in ignorance.
Having been born again into a living hope, we are the children of the Almighty Creator. God is our Father. We have been adopted as children into the very family of God. We are thus called by Peter to live out who are. We are called to live in obedience to our gracious heavenly Father.
We must recognise here the two spiritual families that exist - the family of Satan, and the family of God. In our natural birth, we were born as children of the devil. Jesus said to the Pharisees in that they were of their father, the devil. But through this new birther that Peter has spoken of in verse 3, we are now part of a different family.
The family that we now belong to is the family of God. In light of this, says Peter, live according to the new reality. Live out what you have been made to be.
Thus, we are no longer to conform to the evil desires that we had when we lived in ignorance. Peter says to his readers, and to us, that they and we are not those who are unaware of the magnificent grace of God through Christ. We are not ignorant of the great price that has been paid in order to ransom us. We are not ignorant of the fact that God’s own Son laid down is life for us, paid that price of inestimable value, in order that we could be redeemed.
Friends, in light of this amazing grace, we must not, we cannot, continue to willingly conform to the old patterns of life. Paul outlines these old patterns of life in ...
Colossians 3:5–10 NIV84
5 Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry. 6 Because of these, the wrath of God is coming. 7 You used to walk in these ways, in the life you once lived. 8 But now you must rid yourselves of all such things as these: anger, rage, malice, slander, and filthy language from your lips. 9 Do not lie to each other, since you have taken off your old self with its practices 10 and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator.
Col 3:5-
Brothers and sisters, do you realise the great price that has been paid in order to set you free? Are you thus living in the freedom that has been bought for you?
We must not live according to the old patters. But rather, as Peter writes in verses 15-16...
1 Peter 1:15–16 NIV84
15 But just as he who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do; 16 for it is written: “Be holy, because I am holy.”
We have been called by God to be separate from the world. We are called, in light of His wonderful grace towards us, to live a different kind of life, as we look forward to the return of our master. We are to be living every day in preparation for the life that will live with Christ in perfection.
God is holy!! It would shock us to our core, if God had to act outside of his nature. If God had to suddenly start lying, or act outside of his character, of holiness, or perfect love. To be sure, it is impossible for God to do this.
But friends, it is entirely inappropriate for us to continue our walk as Christians as if the cross doesn’t matter, and as if our own redemption is something worthless or petty, or insignificant. Do you reliase what God has done for you in Christ? Do you realise the extent of His grace? Do you realise the high privilege of being a child of the most high God?
I pray that by His grace, you do. But that must move you, it must move me, to live a completely different life in Christ.
Friends, God calls us to live holy lives by the power and strength that He gives.
Paul writes to the Corinthians...
do not be conformed...
1 Peter 4:2–3 NIV84
2 As a result, he does not live the rest of his earthly life for evil human desires, but rather for the will of God. 3 For you have spent enough time in the past doing what pagans choose to do—living in debauchery, lust, drunkenness, orgies, carousing and detestable idolatry.
Romans 12:2 NIV84
2 Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.
Titus 3:3 NIV84
3 At one time we too were foolish, disobedient, deceived and enslaved by all kinds of passions and pleasures. We lived in malice and envy, being hated and hating one another.
of your former ignorance...
Acts 17:3 NIV84
3 explaining and proving that the Christ had to suffer and rise from the dead. “This Jesus I am proclaiming to you is the Christ,” he said.
Acts 17:30 NIV84
30 In the past God overlooked such ignorance, but now he commands all people everywhere to repent.
as he who called you is holy...
1 John 3:3 NIV84
3 Everyone who has this hope in him purifies himself, just as he is pure.
2 Corinthians 7:1 NIV84
1 Since we have these promises, dear friends, let us purify ourselves from everything that contaminates body and spirit, perfecting holiness out of reverence for God.
And to the Thessalonians...
1 Thessalonians 4:7 NIV84
7 For God did not call us to be impure, but to live a holy life.
The writer to the Hebrews writes...
Hebrews 12:14 NIV84
14 Make every effort to live in peace with all men and to be holy; without holiness no one will see the Lord.
in all your conduct...
James 3:13 NIV84
13 Who is wise and understanding among you? Let him show it by his good life, by deeds done in the humility that comes from wisdom.
You shall be holy, for I am holy...
Leviticus 11:44 NIV84
44 I am the Lord your God; consecrate yourselves and be holy, because I am holy. Do not make yourselves unclean by any creature that moves about on the ground.
We’ve considered together that this purifying hope requires...
Diligently prepared minds
Holy Conduct
But finally, note that ....

3.3. It requires our reverent fear (vv. 17-21)

In verse 17, Peter continues his exhortation for the believers to live holy lives with these words:
1 Peter 1:17 NIV84
17 Since you call on a Father who judges each man’s work impartially, live your lives as strangers here in reverent fear.
God’s call to the Christian, in a world that doesn’t love Him, in a world thta doesn’t love Christianity, in a world that doesn’t love to live in holiness, but rather in self-centeredness, is that we live as strangers here in reverent fear.
The reason is that we call on our Father - a new spiritual Father - the Almighty God - and this Father judges each man’s work impartially. We serve a gracious and a loving Father, a merciful Father, but He is a holy Father. And He is a Father who will judge us based on how we have utilized the grace given to us. This is not going to be a judgment of condemnation to hell, but rather a judgment of how we have lived our lives here in light of the fact that we are children of heaven.
In the Old Testament, God rebuked the priesthood, and even the nation Israel, because they failed to honour God as the mighty one over them.
Malachi 1:6 NIV84
6 “A son honors his father, and a servant his master. If I am a father, where is the honor due me? If I am a master, where is the respect due me?” says the Lord Almighty. “It is you, O priests, who show contempt for my name. “But you ask, ‘How have we shown contempt for your name?’
We, as children of the New Covenant in Christ, as those who have had hearts of stone removed, and been granted by God hearts of flesh, how could it be that we would show contempt for our Father by living unholy lives?
We are called here to live always with a reverent fear of God. His holiness. His perfections. His purity. His power. This is the God we serve, and we must live in holy fear of Him - with respect and awe for His greatness and His majesty.
Why is this?
call on him...
Jeremiah 3:19 NIV84
19 “I myself said, “ ‘How gladly would I treat you like sons and give you a desirable land, the most beautiful inheritance of any nation.’ I thought you would call me ‘Father’ and not turn away from following me.
Jeremiah 3:9 NIV84
9 Because Israel’s immorality mattered so little to her, she defiled the land and committed adultery with stone and wood.
Malachi 1:6 NIV84
6 “A son honors his father, and a servant his master. If I am a father, where is the honor due me? If I am a master, where is the respect due me?” says the Lord Almighty. “It is you, O priests, who show contempt for my name. “But you ask, ‘How have we shown contempt for your name?’
2 Corinthians 6:18 NIV84
18 “I will be a Father to you, and you will be my sons and daughters, says the Lord Almighty.”
Matthew 6:9 NIV84
9 “This, then, is how you should pray: “ ‘Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name,
In verses 18-19, Peter goes...
who judges...
Psalm 62:12 NIV84
12 and that you, O Lord, are loving. Surely you will reward each person according to what he has done.
impartially
1 Peter 1:18–19 NIV84
18 For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your forefathers, 19 but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect.
1 Peter 1:18 NIV84
18 For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your forefathers,
James 2:1 NIV84
1 My brothers, as believers in our glorious Lord Jesus Christ, don’t show favoritism.
1 Oet 1 18-19
with fear...
1 Peter 3:15 NIV84
15 But in your hearts set apart Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect,
This is the great price that has been paid for us. This is the eternal lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world. This is the great price paid for your redemption.
2 Corinthians 7:1 NIV84
1 Since we have these promises, dear friends, let us purify ourselves from everything that contaminates body and spirit, perfecting holiness out of reverence for God.
Romans 11:20 NIV84
20 Granted. But they were broken off because of unbelief, and you stand by faith. Do not be arrogant, but be afraid.
What does this mean to you? I would like you to pause, and just consider your own life; your thoughts; your conduct; how are you living your life, as one who claims to love Christ? I understand that we are not perfect ourselves, and we don’t earn our salvation through our conduct. But I do believe that it is important for us to carefully consider ourselves, our conduct, our attitudes, and to just ask the question - am I honouring Christ as I ought.
Oh, dear brothers and sisters, it is our goal to grow in holiness. And while that growth in holiness may very often be slow, it is not our goal to keep it slow. It is our goal to strive with all diligence to grow much, and to grow quickly, if God should so allow.
In verse 20-21, Peter writes...
1 Peter 1:20 NIV84
20 He was chosen before the creation of the world, but was revealed in these last times for your sake.
were ransomed...
Psalm 49:8 NIV84
8 the ransom for a life is costly, no payment is ever enough—
Psalm 130:8 NIV84
8 He himself will redeem Israel from all their sins.
1 Corinthians 6:20 NIV84
20 you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your body.
Titus 2:14 NIV84
14 who gave himself for us to redeem us from all wickedness and to purify for himself a people that are his very own, eager to do what is good.
2 Peter 2:1 NIV84
1 But there were also false prophets among the people, just as there will be false teachers among you. They will secretly introduce destructive heresies, even denying the sovereign Lord who bought them—bringing swift destruction on themselves.
futile ways...
Ephesians 4:17 NIV84
17 So I tell you this, and insist on it in the Lord, that you must no longer live as the Gentiles do, in the futility of their thinking.
with the precious blood of Christ...
Acts 20:28 NIV84
28 Keep watch over yourselves and all the flock of which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers. Be shepherds of the church of God, which he bought with his own blood.
1 Peter 1:20–21 NIV84
20 He was chosen before the creation of the world, but was revealed in these last times for your sake. 21 Through him you believe in God, who raised him from the dead and glorified him, and so your faith and hope are in God.
a lamb
John 1:29 NIV84
29 The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him and said, “Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!
without blemish...
Hebrews 9:14 NIV84
14 How much more, then, will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself unblemished to God, cleanse our consciences from acts that lead to death, so that we may serve the living God!
was made manifest...
Romans 16:26 NIV84
26 but now revealed and made known through the prophetic writings by the command of the eternal God, so that all nations might believe and obey him—
in the last times...
Hebrews 1:2 NIV84
2 but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, and through whom he made the universe.
Friends, this great redeemer was the One chosen well before the creation of the world to be our redeemer. He was with God in the beginning. He was God. . And He was graciously revealed in these last times for your sake.
who through him are believers...
John 12:44 NIV84
44 Then Jesus cried out, “When a man believes in me, he does not believe in me only, but in the one who sent me.
who raised him from the dead...
Romans 10:9 NIV84
9 That if you confess with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.
Acts 2:24 NIV84
24 But God raised him from the dead, freeing him from the agony of death, because it was impossible for death to keep its hold on him.
And it is through this gracious Saviour that those believers in Peter’s day, and we in our day, believe in God. As such, our faith, and our hope are in God Himself.
And He was graciously revealed in these last times.
gave him glory...
Acts 3:13 NIV84
13 The God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, the God of our fathers, has glorified his servant Jesus. You handed him over to be killed, and you disowned him before Pilate, though he had decided to let him go.
Hebrews 2:9 NIV84
9 But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels, now crowned with glory and honor because he suffered death, so that by the grace of God he might taste death for everyone.
Now, dear friends, I must urge each one, as I do myself, to once again give serious consideration to the great salvation that is ours. We must give serious consideration to the great hope that is ours.
John 7:39 NIV84
39 By this he meant the Spirit, whom those who believed in him were later to receive. Up to that time the Spirit had not been given, since Jesus had not yet been glorified.
There was no small price paid for you and I. And we have not been redeemed to continue with life as usual. Instead, we have been granted a purifying hope. A hope that drives us to love and desire holiness.
Paul says to the Romans...
Romans 6:22 NIV84
22 But now that you have been set free from sin and have become slaves to God, the benefit you reap leads to holiness, and the result is eternal life.
NIV8422 But now that you have been set free from sin and have become slaves to God, the benefit you reap leads to holiness, and the result is eternal life.

Application / Conclusion

As we close, I want to urge every Christian, wherever you find yourself in your Christian faith. If you have been struggling in your faith, and are distant from the Lord; if you have succumbed to temptations to indulge in sinful conduct, perhaps even justifying that sinful conduct; or perhaps your just feeling apathetic in your faith, and not really burning with a deep desire for Christ. My prayer for each one now, is that you would see again, and not just see, but truly perceive within your heart and mind, the greatness and the goodness of your Saviour. Humble yourself now before Him. Recognise the extent of his grace.
And as you do that, I pray that God would grant you the grace and power by His Spirit, the same power that raised Jesus Christ from the grave, to cultivate with all diligence in your own life a mind that is prepared for action, a self-controlled life, and a hope set fully on the grace to be given when Jesus Christ is revealed.
Live your life for God. In everything. In every sphere of life. In all that you do, in your family, in your work, in your private life, in your worship. Live for Jesus Christ, live a life that is holy, to the glory and praise of God.
Amen.
Related Media
Related Sermons