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Pastor Scott L. Harris
Grace Bible Church, NY
March 19, 2023
Armed to Live for the Will of God
1 Peter 4:1-6
It is good to be back. The Shepherd’s Conference was very good, not only the conference speakers, but I was able to catch up with old friends and make new ones. Sam & Maddie were able to go and Ed Mendoza as well. Diane and I enjoyed seeing family and friends – which included reminiscing about those that have passed away. My mom & dad are doing well for their ages. God’s mercy & grace have certainly been poured out on them all these years. My dad has a lot of “I should have died” stories, but the Lord still has him here at over one hundred, and my mom, at just shy of 90, is able to take care of my dad, the house and yard, the yards of a couple of widows, and she still teaches Sunday School to 4th graders along with my younger brother.
I am thankful for Ed & Phil who preached while I was away with two good messages. Ed spoke about the functioning of the body of Christ, the church, from Ephesians 4:1-16. God has given to the church certain people – evangelists and pastor/teachers to equip the saints for the work of ministry, but ministry belongs to everyone in the church so that the whole body may grow and mature. The success of a church in fulfilling the Lord’s purpose for it is dependent on the people of that local congregation using their spiritual gifts within the body to build each other up. Phil spoke on the dangers of the tongue from James 3. True Christian maturity is exhibited directly in the use of the tongue. We live in a society that has become crass and blasphemous in common speech exhibiting selfishness and lack of self-control. As Christians, we are to be very different with tongues seeking to bless others instead of curse them – and that includes the increasing number of crazy drivers who either think the whole road belongs to them or they have a death wish.
In a sense, I will be expanding on both of those today and next week as we examine 1 Peter 4:1-11 and the changes that occur in life for those who have faith in Jesus Christ as their Lord and savior from sin. Old ways of life are replaced by a new life of living according to the reality of who you are in Christ. We have already seen a lot of that from the studies in the first section of this letter in which Peter describes those realities: The believer is chosen by God, sanctified by the Spirit and cleansed by Jesus; born again by God’s mercy and redeemed by Christ’s blood; is a “living stone” being built up as a spiritual house as part of a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation and a people for God’s own possession which makes believers aliens and strangers in this world and slaves of Jesus.
As slaves of Christ, we live in submission to God and the lines of authority that extend from Him in civil institutions, the work place and the home. We submit to human authorities because we are in submission to God which in turn limits submission to human authorities to that which is in keeping with the commands, principles and precepts of God’s Word. That in turn can result in suffering for even though most people will treat you well if you pursue that which is good, there are those who want everyone else to bend to their will instead of God’s will. Such evil people will persecute you because you pursue righteousness. We are not to fear them, be intimidated by them or allow ourselves to be agitated by them. We are to instead fear God by sanctifying Christ as Lord in our hearts demonstrated by: 1) giving a defense, a reasoned explanation of our hope and faith in Christ, in a gentle and respectful manner to anyone that may ask or question it, and 2) keeping a clear conscience in our good behavior. That should put to shame those who revile you for it. We are to follow the example of Jesus Christ as Peter points out at the end of chapter 3. The sufferings that Jesus went through according to the will of God were also the means by which He secured victory over sin and death, attained the seat of authority at the Father’s right hand, and subjugated all of His enemies.
In this next passage, Peter applies these truths to the daily living of the Christian. Our identity in Christ, including His suffering according to the will of God, should result in living in a very different manner from those who remain unconverted. The Christian is given a different purpose in life that centers on God’s will instead of self-will resulting in a life of godliness instead of worldliness even if we should suffer for it at the hands of the ungodly. Follow along as I read 1 Peter 4:1-11. We will be examining vs. 1-6 this morning and 7-11 next week.
1 Therefore, since Christ has suffered in the flesh, arm yourselves also with the same purpose, because he who has suffered in the flesh has ceased from sin, 2 so as to live the rest of the time in the flesh no longer for the lusts of men, but for the will of God. 3 For the time already past is sufficient for you to have carried out the desire of the Gentiles, having pursued a course of sensuality, lusts, drunkenness, carousing, drinking parties and abominable idolatries. 4 In all this, they are surprised that you do not run with them into the same excesses of dissipation, and they malign you; 5 but they will give account to Him who is ready to judge the living and the dead. 6 For the gospel has for this purpose been preached even to those who are dead, that though they are judged in the flesh as men, they may live in the spirit according to the will of God. 7 The end of all things is near; therefore, be of sound judgment and sober spirit for the purpose of prayer. 8 Above all, keep fervent in your love for one another, because love covers a multitude of sins. 9 Be hospitable to one another without complaint. 10 As each one has received a special gift, employ it in serving one another as good stewards of the manifold grace of God. 11 Whoever speaks, is to do so as one who is speaking the utterances of God; whoever serves is to do so as one who is serving by the strength which God supplies; so that in all things God may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom belongs the glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen.
This passage has eight sentences in two paragraphs directed by the imperative to arm yourself with the same way of thinking that Jesus had as He suffered in the flesh. That encompasses both ceasing from sin and living in righteousness as you pursue living according to the will of God. Our focus this morning will be the first paragraph.
Arm Yourselves – 1 Peter 4:1-2
The “therefore” which begins verse one points us back to Peter’s premise in 3:17 that it is better to suffer according to the will of God for doing good than for doing evil with Jesus as the example of this truth in 3:18-22. The suffering which Jesus endured in becoming a man, living in this sinful world, being betrayed by friends, illegally tried, beaten, scourged and crucified resulted in His victory over sin and death when He rose from the grave, commissioned the apostles and ascended to heaven where He is preparing a place for His own and is at the right hand of the Father interceding for us. Peter refers to all of that in verse 1 with the simple statement that “Christ has suffered in the flesh.” It is an action that occurred in the past and which completed the work as Peter stated in 3:18, “Christ also died for sins once for all, the just for the unjust, so that He might bring us to God, having been put to death in the flesh, but made alive in the spirit.” That is contrary to the Roman Catholic teaching that in the Mass Jesus is sacrificed for sin over and over again. Jesus’ completed His work of redemption on the cross and suffers no more. Hebrews 10:12 is direct on this point – “but He, having offered one sacrifice for sins for all time, sat down at the right hand of God.”
Peter points to Jesus’ suffering as the example for believers to follow in obeying the command that is given to “arm yourselves also with the same purpose.” The word translated “arm” (oJplivzw / hoplizō) is from a Greek word used for the actions of a soldier putting on his armor and taking up his weapons. There is nothing passive or casual about this. It is purposeful action taken to be prepared both defensively and offensively for the battle that is about to be entered. That is the mindset Christians are to have as we live in this cursed world as Paul warns in Ephesians 6:10–13. 10 “Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of His might. 11 Put on the full armor of God, so that you will be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil. 12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places. 13 Therefore, take up the full armor of God, so that you will be able to resist in the evil day, and having done everything, to stand firm.” If you are not actively arming yourself in the battle against sin and evil, then you will fall prey to our adversary, the devil, whom Peter describes prowling around like a roaring lion seeking someone to devour (1 Peter 5:8).
Peter gives several ways in which we are to arm ourselves. That begins in verse one with having the same purpose / mind. This refers to Jesus’ manner of thinking in coming down from heaven to become a man and suffering. Jesus was very direct on this point stating in John 4:34 that His “food was to do the will of Him who sent Me and to accomplish His work.” Jesus states in John 7:16 that “My teaching is not Mine, but His who sent Me,” and in John 8:28 that “I do nothing on My own initiative, but I speak these things as the Father taught Me.” In John 5:30 and 6:38 He said that He did not come to “seek My own will, but the will of Him who sent Me.” That was even His prayer in the Garden of Gethsemane as He faced His imminent arrest and crucifixion – “not as I will, but as You will” (Matthew 26:39). That is the same purpose and manner of thinking that every Christian is to have – not your own will, but the will of God our Creator and Father. Peter confirms this is what he means by the last phrase in verse 2 that we are to “live the rest of the time in the flesh . . . for the will of God.”
The second way Peter points out to arm yourself for the spiritual battle we are in is to remember that saving faith in Jesus Christ results in a radical change in your identity and purpose in life. Peter states at the end of verse 1, ” because he who has suffered in the flesh has ceased from sin.” This is not a reference to any kind of penance in which physical suffering cleanses you from sin nor is it any kind of pietistic idea that physical suffering will keep you from sin. The only way to be cleansed from sin is through faith in the atoning sacrifice of Christ which is reckoned to the sinner as righteousness (Romans 4:3-6; Galatians 3:6). People throughout the centuries have tried all sorts of physical suffering to purge themselves from sinful desires, but it never works because as Jesus pointed out in Mark 7:21, it is from within, out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts and actions.
The reference here is to death for that is the same phrase Peter uses in reference to Jesus. For the Christian, physical death will result in the ceasing of all sin for life in this world will be put behind us and we will be with Christ for eternity (2 Cor. 5:6-8). Our sanctification will be completed. But Peter is not talking about physical death here as demonstrated by his immediate reference to living the rest of the time in the flesh. The word cease here, tau:w/ pauō, “conveys the idea that temptation has lost its appeal and power over the believer.” This is a reference to the believer’s identification with Jesus’ death which frees us from the bondage of sin as Peter already pointed out in 2:24, “He Himself bore our sins in His body on the cross, so that we might die to sin and live to righteousness.” Paul stated it this way of himself in Galatians 2:20, “I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me.” Paul put it this way in Colossians 3:2–5, 2 “Set your mind on the things above, not on the things that are on earth. 3 For you have died and your life is hidden with Christ in God. 4 When Christ, who is our life, is revealed, then you also will be revealed with Him in glory. 5 Therefore consider the members of your earthly body as dead to immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, and greed, which amounts to idolatry.” Turn over to Romans 6 for a more extensive explanation.
Keep in mind that Peter has just mentioned baptism with reference to salvation in 3:21 which makes Romans 6 the perfect parallel passage to explain what Peter is referencing here since it explains both the purpose of baptism and its relationship to dying to sin.
1 What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin so that grace may increase? 2 May it never be! How shall we who died to sin still live in it? 3 Or do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus have been baptized into His death? 4 Therefore we have been buried with Him through baptism into death, so that as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life. 5 For if we have become united with Him in the likeness of His death, certainly we shall also be in the likeness of His resurrection, 6 knowing this, that our old self was crucified with Him, in order that our body of sin might be done away with, so that we would no longer be slaves to sin; 7 for he who has died is freed from sin. 8 Now if we have died with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with Him, 9 knowing that Christ, having been raised from the dead, is never to die again; death no longer is master over Him. 10 For the death that He died, He died to sin once for all; but the life that He lives, He lives to God. 11 Even so consider yourselves to be dead to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus. 12 Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body so that you obey its lusts, 13 and do not go on presenting the members of your body to sin as instruments of unrighteousness; but present yourselves to God as those alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness to God. 14 For sin shall not be master over you, for you are not under law but under grace. 15 What then? Shall we sin because we are not under law but under grace? May it never be! 16 Do you not know that when you present yourselves to someone as slaves for obedience, you are slaves of the one whom you obey, either of sin resulting in death, or of obedience resulting in righteousness? 17 But thanks be to God that though you were slaves of sin, you became obedient from the heart to that form of teaching to which you were committed, 18 and having been freed from sin, you became slaves of righteousness. 19 I am speaking in human terms because of the weakness of your flesh. For just as you presented your members as slaves to impurity and to lawlessness, resulting in further lawlessness, so now present your members as slaves to righteousness, resulting in sanctification. 20 For when you were slaves of sin, you were free in regard to righteousness. 21 Therefore what benefit were you then deriving from the things of which you are now ashamed? For the outcome of those things is death. 22 But now having been freed from sin and enslaved to God, you derive your benefit, resulting in sanctification, and the outcome, eternal life. 23 For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
That is Peter’s point in verse 2, 2 “so as to live the rest of the time in the flesh no longer for the lusts of men, but for the will of God.” This verse also proves Peter is talking about a spiritual death to sin and not the cessation of physical life. Whatever time you have remaining in this life, and you do not know whether that will be short or long, you are to live it in pursuit of the will of God just as Jesus did instead of in the strong desires of worldly minded men which Peter will detail in the next two verses.
Heathen Surprise & Reaction – 1 Peter 4:3-4
The next way to arm yourself is to recognize that you are not to continue in your sinful former ways of life even when that becomes a cause for your friends to reject you. 3 For the time already past is sufficient [for you] to have carried out the desire of the Gentiles, having pursued a course of sensuality, lusts, drunkenness, carousals, drinking parties and abominable idolatries. 4 And in [all] this, they are surprised that you do not run with [them] into the same excess of dissipation, and they malign [you];
The main thought of this compound sentence is the surprise of the heathen that the Christian will no longer join them in their sinful pursuits. By the particular vices Peter lists, it is obvious that he is writing to those who have been converted as adults after living in the manner of pagan Gentiles. “Desire” here, bouvlhma / boulāma, “denotes the will as plan, project, purpose, goal, intention or tendency” (TDNT). The Gentile culture was persuasive pressure toward a host of vices each of which is listed without an article which stresses the qualitative nature of each vice, and each is plural indicating these sinful acts are repeated. Sensualities, (ajsevlgeia / aselgeia), describes “behavior completely lacking in moral restraint, usually with the implication of sexual licentiousness” (Louw-Nida). Lusts, (ejpiqumiva / epithumia), is strong desire which in this context is evil in wanting what belongs to someone else and/or to engage in activity which is morally wrong. Drunkenness, (oijnoflugivaiV / oinophlugiais), is a compound work combining “wine” with “bubble up” in the sense of overflowing which describes the consumption of a large quantity of wine (Louw-Nida). Carousing, (kw:moV / kōmos), refers to all that goes with drinking parties and so also translated as “revelries” and “orgies.” The Greeks used the word to describe drunken youths parading in the streets. Drinking parties, (povtoV / potos), refers to the act of drinking, and in this context is probably connected with religious rites of pagans. Abominable idolatries, (ajqemivtoiV eijdwlolatrivaiV / athemitois eidōlolatriais), refers to the abominations that were part of the worship of idols.
Whether a sinful lifestyle had been practiced for a long time or a short time and whether it is vices of adults such as these Peter lists or the simple foolishness of children who are disobedient to their parents, it is always past time to give up sin to pursue righteousness. It is certainly easier the earlier a person becomes a Christian because the sins entered into are not as entrenched nor as flagrantly rebellious nor is the pressure to continue in them as strong, but they are still present even with children. The current wave of gender dysphoria is directly linked to pressure from peers and those they look up to as authority figures. Young adults face very strong peer pressure to do what all the other young adults are doing or risk being shut out of the group. This cultural pressure and persuasion is part of what “desire of the Gentiles” refers to as already mentioned. A strong family identity goes a long way in helping both children and young adults resist peer pressure. A strong Christian identity and personal involvement and accountability in the church family is even more helpful to everyone in thwarting cultural pressure to join in sinful vices.
Peter makes the observation and gives the warning that the heathen are surprised when someone becomes a Christian and stops participating in the same behaviors as they do, their “excesses of dissipation” (ajwtivaV ajnavcusin / aōtias anachusin), their flood of behaviors that show such lack of concern or even thought about the consequences of their sinful actions. They live for the pleasures of the moment. Drunks do not consider the hangover that is coming or the loss of jobs and/or family that is common with alcoholics and addicts. Reckless drivers do not consider the wrecks, carnage and deaths they may cause. The sexually immoral consider neither the physical diseases they incur or pass along nor the emotional damage caused by multiple broken relationships. Instead, they think you are the strange one as if you were suddenly a foreigner, an alien from another culture, which is the meaning of the word, and which is in fact true because the Christian is as a new creation in Christ. They cannot understand why you will no longer join them in doing what they do. It makes no sense to them for their minds are descending into depravity being blinded by the god of this world (Romans 1:18-32; Col. 4:4). That bewilderment can quickly turn to hostility and they will malign you. The actual word here is blaspheme which is to speak against in such as a way as to harm or injure your reputation. Since these are actions directly related to obeying God instead of following sinful desires, the blasphemy is against God’s commands and hence God as well.
It is very common for those who have become Christians as adults to experience this from their friends. As a co-worker told me when I was working for the Los Angeles County Department of Agricultural, his friends did not want him drinking a soda at the bar with them. If he was not going to join them in getting drunk, they did not want him around. The final result was that those friends ended the relationship. Many of you have had similar experiences.
Judgment of the Heathen – 1 Peter 4:5
The next way to arm yourself is to remember the judgment to come. Peter gives a stern warning in verse 5 that the heathen should give careful consideration of the consequences of their “excessive dissipations” and all their sins because “they shall give account to Him who is ready to judge the living and the dead.” To “give account” is a phrase borrowed from bookkeeping and refers to being held responsible for everything they have done. Revelation 20:12 describes the books being opened and judgment being made by what was written in the books about each individual’s works. This warning is made multiple times in both the Hebrew and Greek Scriptures. For example, Jeremiah 17:10, “I, the Lord, search the heart, I test the mind, Even to give to each man according to his ways, According to the results of his deeds,” and Matthew 16:27, “For the Son of Man is going to come in the glory of His Father with His angels, and will then repay every man according to his deeds.” Jesus even warned in Matthew 12:36 “that every careless word that people speak, they shall give an accounting for it in the day of judgment.”
Ecclesiastes 12:14 states, “For God will bring every act to judgment, everything which is hidden, whether it is good or evil” and Romans 14:12 that “each one of us will give an account of himself to God.” However, God has given all judgment to the Son as stated in John 5:22. Peter explained in Acts 10:42 that Jesus is “the One who has been appointed by God as Judge of the living and the dead” (See also 2 Timothy 4:1). The living and the dead was a common phrase to indicate all people of the past and present. Even Christians will stand before the judgment seat of Christ according to 2 Corinthians 5:10, but it will not be for condemnation for as Romans 8:1 declares, there is no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. Believers stand forgiven and clothed in His righteousness with our names written in the Lamb’s book of life. However, our works will be judged concerning their quality and dispensing of rewards accordingly (1 Cor. 3:12-15).
Peter’s announcement of this judgment is a stern warning for all non-Christians, but it is a hope for the Christian as Peter explains in the next verse.
The Gospel & Life – 1 Peter 4:6
The last way Peter mentions in this section to arm yourself is to remember the promise of eternal life given to all who will place their faith in the person and work of the Lord Jesus Christ. 6 “For the gospel has for this purpose been preached even to those who are dead, that though they are judged in the flesh as men, they may live in the spirit according to the will of God.”
Some have taken Peter’s wording here combined with the statement in 3:18 that Jesus made proclamation to the spirits in prison to mean that the gospel is preached to the dead giving them a second chance for salvation. While that would certainly be a comforting thought for all of us who have had loved ones that reject Christ throughout their lives, it is simply not true. As I pointed out in the last sermon in this series, there is no second chance after death. Hebrews 9:27 is quite blunt about this declaring “it is appointed for men to die once, and after this, judgment.” Jesus’ explanation of the rich man and Lazarus in Luke 16:19-31 illustrates this reality. Scripture must be interpreted by Scripture and not by desires for what you would like to be true. Because the verbs for preached and judged are aorist passive, they signify events that already took place which also eliminates the idea Clement of Alexandria proposed that this is a reference to those who are spiritually dead since that would require a present active verb to include people who are physically alive at the present but spiritually dead.
What then is Peter talking about? He is referring to those that had heard the gospel and believed and had physically died some of which were martyrs as indicated by the next phrase regarding being judged in the flesh according to men. Yet, according to God’s judgment they may live in the spirit. The verb for may live is a present active indicative signifying a present reality. This is a case in which a more wooden translation such as this one can be helpful. “For because of this also to the dead the gospel was proclaimed so that they may be judged on one hand according to men in flesh but on the other hand live according to God in spirit.”
This is a statement of great hope to the people to whom Peter wrote. Persecution of Christians had already started and it would get worse. Some of them would even die as martyrs because they would not violate God’s commands in order to join in with the sinful acts of their society including idolatry. Many Christians did die because they would not burn incense as an offering to Caesar which would be an act of idolatry. The gospel, the good news of salvation from sin by faith in Jesus Christ, is a message of life. Those spiritually dead are given spiritual life and a promise of eternal life with Christ so that “he who believes in [Him] will live even if He dies (John 11:25). They could take comfort concerning both those that had already physically died and themselves. Man’s evil judgment which results in persecution of Christians and possible martyrdom is reversed by God’s judgment which attributes Christ’s righteousness to them and gives them eternal life. Take heart, for these same promises belong to us.
We are in a spiritual battle and so we need to be well prepared and equipped for the fight against sin and to live for the will of God in righteousness. Arm yourself by what Peter points out in this passage. 1) Follow the example of Jesus Christ and live according to His purpose and mindset to live your life according to the will of God. 2) No longer live according to the sinful manner of life you used to have but instead according to the will of God. 3) Be prepared to lose friends and even be blasphemed because you will not join them in their sinful pursuits. 4) Remember that God will judge everyone according to their deeds. This will bring condemnation upon the unrighteous while the righteous will have their works judged and rewards dispensed accordingly. 5) Take to heart the promise of the gospel that death for us is only a transition to eternal life with Christ so that even the threat of martyrdom is not a cause of fear.
Sermon Notes – March 19, 2023
Armed to Live for the Will of God – 1 Peter 4:1-6
1 Peter 4:1-11 points to the ___________that occur in life for those who place their faith in Jesus Christ
Believers are to live according the reality of their _____________in Christ (1 Peter 1:1-2:12)
Believers live in submission to _______ & the lines authority extending from Him (1 Peter 2:13-3:12)
Believers live in pursuit of righteousness & __________for the suffering that may bring (1 Peter 3:13-4:19)
The believer arms himself to live according to the will of _____instead of self-will & worldliness (1 Peter 4:1-11)
Arm Yourselves – 1 Peter 4:1-2
“Therefore” points back to Peter’s premise in _______ – it is better to suffer according for good than for evil
Jesus’ suffering in the flesh culminated in His atoning _______on the cross resulting in victory over sin & death
Jesus’ suffering was __________in the past & no longer continues (1 Peter 3:18; Hebrews 10:12)
To arm yourself is an ________preparation for defensive & offensive battle – see Ephesians 6:10-18
The first way to arm yourself is to have the ______ purpose / mind as Jesus in His life and suffering
Jesus came to do God’s _______- John 4:34; 5:30; 6:38; 7:16; 8:28; Matthew 26:39
The 2nd way to arm yourself is to remember that faith in Christ brings ________change to your identity & purpose
Suffering in the flesh & ceasing from sin is not a reference to ________kind of penance or pietistic ideas
The reference here is to ________, but not physical death though sin does cease for the Christian at that point
Cease, tau:w / pauō, “conveys the idea that temptation has lost its appeal and ________over the believer.”
The believer’s identification with Jesus’ death which breaks the _______of sin – 1 Pet. 2:24; Gal. 2:20; Col. 3:2-5
1 Peter 3:21 reference to baptism & salvation makes _______________ the perfect parallel passage to explain this
Whatever ________ you have remaining in this life, long or short, live it in pursuit of the will of God
Heathen Surprise & Reaction – 1 Peter 4:3-4
Arm yourself by not continuing in your former _______ way of life even though your friends will reject you for it
The main thought of these verses is the ________of the heathen that the Christian will no longer join them in sin
The Gentile culture was persuasive pressure toward a host of ________- each listed as plurals
Sensualities, ajsevlgeia / aselgeia, behavior completely lacking in moral _________, usually sexual licentiousness
Lusts, ejpiqumevw / epithumeō, is strong ________which in this context wanting is something illicit
Drunkenness, oijnoflugivaiV / oinophlugiais), “overflowing wine” describes the consumption of a _____of wine
Carousing, kw:moV/ kōmos, also translated as “revelries” & “orgies” – _____that goes with drinking parties
Drinking parties, povtoV / potos, refers to the act of _________ & in this context is related to the worship of idols
Abominable idolatries, ajqemivtoiV eijdwlolatrivaiV / athemitois eidōlolatriais, the ______________of idolatry
It is always ______________to give up sin to pursue righteousness – whether young or old
Strong family identity & personal church involvement help _________sinful cultural & peer pressure
Gentile “excesses of dissipation” – flood of behaviors that show ____of concern about the consequences of actions
They think the Christian is ________- like a foreigner or alien – for not joining in their sins – they can’t understand
Their bewilderment can turn to hostility & __________- New Christians will lose old friends
Judgment of the Heathen – 1 Peter 4:5
Arm yourself by remembering the ___________that is to come
To “give an account” refers to being ___________________for everything you have done – Rev. 20:12; Jer. 17:10
God is judge (Eccl. 12:14; Rom. 14:12), but He had given judgment to the ___(John 5:22; Acts 10:42; 2 Tim 4:1)
Even ___________will be judged (2 Cor. 5:10), but not condemned (Rom. 8:1), their works assessed & rewarded
Peter’s announcement of judgment is a ___________to the non-Christian and hope for the Christian
The Gospel & Life – 1 Peter 4:6
Arm yourself by remembering the promise of ___________________that is part of the gospel
This is not a reference to any kind of second chance of salvation __________death – Heb. 9:27; Luke 16:19-31
This is a proclamation and judgment that ________________taken place while living is a present reality
Those that heard the gospel, believed & had physically _____, some as martyrs, would _______in spirit with God
This is a statement of ________to Christians facing persecution and perhaps martyrdom – John 11:25
We are in a spiritual battle, so be _______ yourself to fight against sin & live according to the will of God
Follow the example of Christ with the same purpose / mindset to do the will of God
No longer live according to the sinful manner of life you used to have. Be prepared to lose friends & be slandered
Remember God will judge everyone – condemnation to the wicked, eternal life for the believer
Parents, you are responsible to apply God’s Word to your children’s lives. Here is some help.Young Children – draw a picture about something you hear during the sermon. Explain your picture(s) to your parents at lunch. Older Children – Do one or more of the following: 1) Write down all the verses mentioned in the sermon and look them up later. 2) Count how many times the word “arm” is used. 2) Discuss with your parents how to arm yourself to fight against sin and live in righteousness according to the will of God
THINK ABOUT IT!
Questions to consider in discussing the sermon with others. How does your identity in Christ change the manner in which you live? How does submission to God limit submission to lines authority from Him? How did Jesus “suffer in the flesh”? Why is the Roman Catholic doctrine of Mass – repeated sacrificing of Christ – a heresy? Read Ephesians 6:10-18. Describe the spiritual war we are in and how to be prepared for it. What was the purpose / mindset of Jesus toward living on earth and His suffering in the flesh? How will that same purpose / mindset enable you to have victory in the spiritual battle? How do we know that Peter is not referring to physical death of the believer in verses 1 & 2? What death is being referred to that breaks the bondage of sin? What is the relationship between baptism, Jesus suffering in the flesh, salvation and ceasing from sin? See Romans 6. The pagan culture of the Greeks gave persuasive pressure for the practice of a host of vices listed by Peter. What vices does our own culture pressure people to do? What are some practical means by which children and adults can be helped to resist the pressures of peers and culture to do evil? What is “excesses of dissipation“? How is that seen in practical terms in the vices Peter lists? Why are the unregenerate surprised and think Christians are strange for not participating with them in their vices? What is their reaction? How have you seen this in your own life or that of someone close to you? Everyone will give an account to God for their actions (Jer. 17:10; Eccl. 12:14; Matt. 12:36; 16:27, etc.). What is the difference in the judgment of the unrighteous and those who are in Christ Jesus? Is there any opportunity for the unrighteous to be saved from hell after death? Why or why not? Who is Peter referring to in 4:6 that had the gospel preached to them but are dead? How might they have been judged according to men in the flesh? What is the promise of the gospel for eternal life? How is vs. 6 an encouragement to Christians facing persecution and possible martyrdom? How well are you armed for the spiritual battle? What should you do to be better armed?
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