Great to be back with you again. We continue in our study of 1 Peter. Jason got us off to a good start last week as he gave a good introduction to the book and talked about the first couple verses.
We looked at the author, Peter. Jason reminded us that Peter was just a simple fisherman, but God chose Him and used him to start the church and do some pretty amazing things in the book of Acts.
We looked at the recipients. It was written to a group of believers who were scattered throughout the Roman empire. Peter said they were living as foreigners, and we know that they also were facing many trials.
We looked at the purpose of the book being to encourage these guys because of their trials, and to remind them of their identity.
As we continue on with verse 3, let’s take a minute to pray for God to bless the reading and the studying of His word
(Stop and pray)
Today we are going to be looking at verses 3-5. Let’s go ahead and read them all, then we’ll come back and go through each one individually.
(Read 1 Peter 1:3-5)
OK, let’s start with in verse 3
1 Peter 1:3
v3 – All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. It is by his great mercy that we have been born again, because God raised Jesus Christ from the dead.
All praise to God
Peter starts by reminding us that our salvation is completely something that is given to us by God! Peter says, “All praise to God!” He is the one who gets all the credit! We cannot claim any credit for ourselves. All praise goes to Him.
It is by his great mercy that we have been born again!
Remember the story of Adam and Eve and the tragic day that they chose to disobey God’s simple instruction? What had God told them?
(Gen 2:16-17) “You may freely eat the fruit of every tree in the garden, except the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. If you eat its fruit, you are sure to die!”
We have talked about this many times. When they disobeyed God and ate the fruit, Adam and Eve did die that day! Immediately their relationship with God was broken (death of the relationship). From that time forward their bodies began to decay (death of the body). And, the ultimate death, separation from God forever was to be their final destination (eternal death).
But God loved them so much that He did not want them to stay there. He had created them for relationship and He longed to be their friend. But, because of their sin, there was a barrier, a wall, separating them. So, in His mercy, God had a plan!
From the very beginning, God showed his great mercy to Adam and Eve. They deserved to die. They deserved to pay the ultimate penalty and remain separated from Him forever. But instead, God had mercy on them. He did not give them what they deserved. Instead, God killed an animal right in front of them. God was the first one to kill an animal. As the blood of that animal spilled out on the ground, God gave them the picture of what they deserve. It was also a picture of what God would do as His ultimate act of mercy. In His great mercy to us, God killed His own Son, and He died in our place!
It is by his great mercy that we have been born again, because God raised Jesus Christ from the dead.
In verse 2 Peter had said that because God chose you, “As a result, you have obeyed him and have been cleansed by the blood of Jesus Christ.” It was Jesus blood that was shed for you that cleansed you from your sin! You deserved to die. But Jesus died for you! But, Jesus didn’t stay dead. His payment was complete. The penalty was paid. Therefore God raised Jesus from the dead.
All praise be to God! By his great mercy your penalty has been paid by the blood of Jesus, and God raised Jesus from the dead to show that His payment was enough!
Remember what we learned in Romans 6? Here is what Paul said in Romans 6:7-19
Rom 6:7-9 when we died with Christ we were set free from the power of sin. 8 And since we died with Christ, we know we will also live with him. 9 We are sure of this because Christ was raised from the dead, and he will never die again. Death no longer has any power over him.
God raised Jesus from the dead showing his power over sin and death! We no longer have to live under the power of sin. Peter says, “We have been born again.” Just like God raised Jesus from the dead, God has given us a new life!
Paul said that we died with Christ, and when God raised Jesus from the dead, we too were raised to a new life.
Now we live with great expectation
When we were kids, our parents would also buy us gifts for Christmas. We knew they had bought something, but we could not see what it was until Christmas morning. We lived with such great expectation of a fun toy, or something that we really wanted.
Sometimes Christmas day would come, and I would be disappointed because I didn’t get what I wanted. Or other times, a couple days after opening a new toy, the toy would break and I would be disappointed.
What God has promised us is far better than any toy we could get for Christmas. Peter says, “we live with great expectation.” What we have to look forward is worth the wait. God will not disappoint us!
I know sometimes you guys will bring your vanilla or your buai out to sell in town. When you leave the bush you have a picture in mind of how much money you are going to get for it and what you can do with that money. You are living with great expectation. But, how often has it happened that the buyers only give you half of what you pictured, or less?
What we can expect from God is so much greater than anything we can get here on earth. In fact, it’s better than what we can imagine!
1 Peter 1:4
and we have a priceless inheritance—an inheritance that is kept in heaven for you, pure and undefiled, beyond the reach of change and decay.
What we can expect from God is a priceless! It’s better than we can ever imagine. You can’t put a price on it it’s so great.
Peter tells us that we have a priceless inheritance. What is an inheritance? It’s something that gets passed on to you from a relative who has died. How do you acquire land here in PNG? Aside from purchasing it, land gets passed down from Father to son, or in some cases, from your mother (like Iski.) This is the idea of inheritance.
Is it something you have to work for? No
Is it something you have to pay for? No
Is it something you deserve or somehow earned? No. It is given to you because of your relationship to the owner.
God is giving us an inheritance based on our relationship with His Son. What is our relationship with His Son?
- We died with Him, and now we live with Him.
- This new life we have is His life in us!
- We are “in Him”
Since we are in Him, and He is in us, what he inherits is what we will inherit! All Praise be to God! He is the one who gets all the credit! We cannot claim any credit for ourselves.
Peter gives a few details about our inheritance.
- Where is our inheritance? In heaven
- How secure is it?
This inheritance is absolutely secure because it is:
- kept in heaven
- pure and undefiled – this is the idea that it will never diminish. It will never fade or lose it’s value.
- beyond the reach of decay..
When you get paid for your vanilla, or your buai, how secure is that money? It’s definitely not like Peter says here, “Beyond the read of change or decay.” It could be stolen. It could be lost. It may diminish in value. But not our inheritance. It’s guaranteed. It will never fade, nor diminish. It’s beyond the reach of anyone who would want to steel it! It’s kept in heaven for you!
So, what is this inheritance? What are we to wait for with great expectation?
1 Peter 1:5
And through your faith, God is protecting you by his power until you receive this salvation, which is ready to be revealed on the last day for all to see.
Our inheritance is our salvation! It’s we are waiting for. It’s what we, in faith, are believing God will give us.
Through faith, Peter says we will receive this salvation. This is what we should be waiting for with great expectation. This is the inheritance that is better than anything we can imagine.
Peter says here that God is protecting, not only your inheritance in heaven, but he is protecting you, to enable you to receive it. The creator of the universe is personally guarding / taking care of your inheritance. But His protection is also ours by faith. We have to believe it in order to experience it.
What if you knew that God was protecting your buai money, or your vanilla money as you head back to the bush. How would that make you feel if God said “Dont worry about that money, I have it guaranteed. It will never diminish. It will never fade or lose it’s value. And I will personally protect you as you make your journey home.” Wow, how great would that be? You could make your journey without worrying at all!
But, God’s promise here is much greater than that! He is saying He will protect you until the day you go to be with Him in heaven!
Remember how God protected the people of Isreal and their inheritance. God promised them a land. People kept trying to take their inheritance/their land away from them, but God physically protected them. And just like them, God is promising to protect our spiritual inheritance and protect us on our journey home.
Remember all the crazy things you used to believe? Remember the spirits you used to be afraid of? Peter reminds us that we don’t need to live in fear. God is protecting us by his power until you receive this salvation
Your inheritance / your salvation is ready to be revealed on the last day for all to see.
When will we receive the fulfillment of our expectation? Peter says, “It will be revealed on the last day.” This is the final installment of our salvation! Our salvation will finally be complete when we are united together with Jesus, to live with Him forever, when He returns and takes us home to be with Him.
As we learned in revelation. When we go to live with him, “He will wipe every tear away from our eyes and there will be no more death or sorrow or crying or pain. These will be gone forever. ‘ (Rev 21:4)
- What an incredible inheritance we have to look forward to!
- All praise be to God
- We should be living with Great expectation
- We have an inheritance that is absolutely secure in heaven
- God is protecting our inheritance and protecting us until we receive it!
This is something to be looking forward to!