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Do You Realize Just How Great It Is

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Do You Realize Just How Great It Is?

1 Peter 1:10-12

There is a program called the “Antiques Roadshow.”  People want to have their stuff evaluated to estimate its worth.  Some people find that what they own is worth much more than they ever imagined.  Peter is trying to get that idea into the hearts of God’s people concerning their salvation.

Hebrews 2:3 How shall we escape, if we neglect so great salvation; which at the first began to be spoken by the Lord, and was confirmed unto us by them that heard him;  think about what salvation means.  Forgiveness, eternal life, relationship with God, access to the throne.  But yet it is possible to neglect this great salvation.  As Peter is writing to there severely tested Christians, he takes a lot of time to remind them just how good they have it, just because they are saved.  I have seen salvation be the center point of a person’s life.  I have also seen it as being portrayed as, Yes, I am saved.  It is not really that big of a deal.  And sometimes those attitudes have existed in the same person.  Here is the question I want to pose to you tonight: Do you realize just how great it is?

1.  The prophets studied it.  The grace that should come to you.  Grace was not a new idea, but the grace that we experience is a little different than what the OT saints knew. 

Genesis 6:8 But Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord.

Remember that Ruth went looking for grace.  David was one that wanted to show grace as a memorial of his covenant with Jonathan.  The grace that we are talking about is connected with the sufferings of Christ.

Genesis 3:15 And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel.

Psalms 22:1 My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me? why art thou so far from helping me, and from the words of my roaring?

Isaiah 53:5 But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.

So these prophets were moved by the Spirit of God to testify of this coming grace that was connected to the sufferings of the Messiah.  Then they spent time studying it out.  They never saw the final fulfillment of it, yet they believed.

Hebrews 11:13 These all died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them afar off, and were persuaded of them, and embraced them, and confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth.

Hebrews 11:39 And these all, having obtained a good report through faith, received not the promise:

Then we fast forward a few thousand years into the New Testament era, and there is another problem.  They were looking for the glory to be to follow; to be on the heels of the suffering.  Analogy of two things that look like they are close together when viewed from a distance.  As you draw closer to them, they grow farther apart.   

 They were looking for the kingdom to come, and when it didn’t, the disciples were in a pretty sorry state.  Remember the scene on the road to Emmaus.  These two were down, then Jesus shows up and listens to their story.

Luke 24:25-26 Then he said unto them, O fools, and slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken: Ought not Christ to have suffered these things, and to enter into his glory?

2.  The Apostles Preached it.  After Peter left for his fishing trip and was restored on the beach, God used him in a mighty way to preach the gospel.  You may think about Peter and his preaching, he must have said some pretty profound things.  Have you read Acts 2?  He preached things that we already know.  It wasn’t the method of delivery and his eloquence, it was simply the content of the message.  Tehn a few years later Paul shows up, and he is off planting churches, and seeing souls saved.  He is selected by God to pen much of our New Testament.  He must have been quite the theologian.  Do you know what he said about his knowledge?

1 Corinthians 2:1-2 And I, brethren, when I came to you, came not with excellency of speech or of wisdom, declaring unto you the testimony of God. For I determined not to know any thing among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified.

But that was enough to see some powerful changes take place.

1 Thessalonians 1:9-10 For they themselves shew of us what manner of entering in we had unto you, and how ye turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God; And to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, even Jesus, which delivered us from the wrath to come.

3.  The angels Desire it.  Think about all of the things angels are involved in biblically.  They shouted for joy at the dawn of creation, guarded the garden after the fall, ministered to Abraham, were a part in plagues of Egypt, got in Balaam’s way, heralded the birth of JTB and Jesus, stood ready to rescue Christ from the cross, and announced His resurrection.  We have not even touched their role in the last days according to the Book of Revelation.  Let’s suffice it to saythat they get to do a number of things in God’s service.  Now open your mind of imagination and think back to over 2000 years ago. 

God the son is leaving today.  Where is He going?  To the earth.  Why?  To give His life for the creature God calls man.  What for?  God the father is giving them something called redemption.  What’s that?  I don’t know exactly, but it seems that God is giving fallen man a second chance to be reunited in fellowship with Him.  Wow, do you think that God will offer it to the one third of our kind that chose to follow Lucifer?  No, it is only for mankind.  What will it be like?  From what I hear it will be a sort of new birth in which God is going to make man into a new creature, different than before.  I sure would like to experience something like that.  We can’t, all we can do is look at from here, and wonder what it feels like. 

You know that verse in Luke that says the angels rejoice over one sinner that comes to repentance?  Has it ever occurred to you that they do not know what they are rejoicing over except for the fact that they know it pleases God?  What a wonderful gift is our salvation.

Peter needed to remind these struggling pilgrims that though they were suffering now, there is a glory to follow.

Rev 21:4 And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.

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