Thursday, September 19, 2019

1 Peter 1:6-9 Bible study for The Way Connection Group.

The Way Connection Group
1 Peter Study 
1 Peter 1:6-9
Jeff Sandberg, elder
For the audio, click here.
You are his if you are in Christ.
Therefore, be responsible.
By Your Name


Last Sunday, we spoke of the amazing blessings that God is to his fallen creation, that, according to his abundant mercy, the Father grants believers a living hope, an inheritance, and to be upheld by God’s power in Christ throughout our life in Him.
This week, we discover that the reason Peter’s audience is reminded of this is that in the time they received the letter they were experiencing serve temptations that were literally testing their faith and belief in Christ. However, knowing the promises we have in Christ, we are to rejoice at His staying power and persevere to the end because, though their knowledge of Jesus is limited to letters and preaching, they know and love him and will be rewarded with everlasting life because of their allegiance to Him.

Verse 6. 

  • Wherein. Same as “in this,” or “so.” Similar to the use of “therefore.”
  • Very important word. Without it, we wouldn’t understand that we need to know what came before it.
  • Rejoice! It bears repeating. Acts to Revelation, the word “rejoice” is used 32 times.
    • Only once is it used against a believer. Rev. 11:10, the two prophets.
    • Why are we to rejoice? Here are some of those instances.
      • Romans 5:2. Rejoice in the hope of the glory of God.
      • 2 Corinthians 7:9. Paul rejoiced that the Corinthians’ “sorrowed to repentance.”
      • In Galatians 4:27, Paul hearkens back to Isaiah to encourage the Gentiles that they have been a part of God’s plan of salvation from times past.
      • Paul rejoices in Philippians 1:18 that Christ is preached.
      • Later in this book, Paul rejoices “in the day of Christ, that I have not run in vain, neither laboured in vain.”
    • What is said in Lamentations? What is one of the (now formerly) favorite hymns of the church? Great is thy faithfulness! His mercies are new every morning! We have abundant reasons to rejoice...RANT
  • Manifold temptations.
    • James 1:12-15. says God won’t tempt us. Right, he won’t. But, look at Job. This is, possibly, an extreme, but it is an example, nonetheless. It was his trust in the Lord, despite his misunderstandings, that kept him.
    • At this time, the Christians had been persecuted because Nero, likely having burned down Rome, had made the Christians his scapegoat, which is why Peter refers to them as elect exiles.
      • Most dangerous question. What does it mean to me?
        • We are not to concern ourselves with what it means to us.
        • A better question. How does it apply to me?
          • Miles Coverdale once said: It shall greatly help thee to understand scripture, if thou mark not only what is spoken or written, but of whom, and unto whom, with what words, at what time, where, to what intent, with what circumstance, considering what goeth before, and what followeth after.
      • I am of the mind that we should not allegorize the scriptures to fit us. At the threat of their very lives, the early Christians were likely tempted to abdicate their faith. We have brethren in the world today for whom this would directly apply, especially in the case of our Middle Eastern brothers and sisters. These “temptations” are not our typical temptations to sin. These were to abandon the faith altogether, which is why Peter starts the way he does. “Remember who you are! Remember who saved you!” This rings so true in 2 Peter chapters 1 and 3. Peter, multiple times, “reminded them” of important truths in order to help keep them on the road to ultimate salvation “reserved in heaven for you.” That also said, let us be in prayer for those who “went out from us because they were never really of us.” May we treat them like the tax collector, preaching to them the gospel of the grace of God in Jesus Christ.

Verse 7. 

  • Trial of your faith… if need be. Not everyone will experience this. Pray for God’s gentleness as did the Psalmist.
  • This verse is why the prosperity gospel needs to die.
  • Psalm 12:6. God’s words (words, not word/message) are pure words, as silver tried in a furnace of earth, purified seven times. And, our faith is more precious than gold tried with fire. Some may say it is our faith that saves… Well, faith in what? When I step into an airplane, where is my earthly faith? Certainly not in myself. If that sucker goes down, no amount of “faith” is going to spare me from the crash at the bottom. My faith is in the plain, the airline mechanics, and the pilot, not me. When I’m in an elevator, same deal. If the hydraulics go bad, does my “faith” do anything? Nope, in fact, you could say I was a bit let down
  • What other metaphors, images, or examples are we given in Scripture where our trials sanctify us and bring more glory to God?
    • EXAMPLES: Job. Jesus. Elijah. John the Baptist.
    • METAPHORS: Tree pruning.
    • IMAGES: 

Why Suffering?

  • Sin. Our bodies, minds, and souls have been all touched by our sin, which is why the T in TULIP (total depravity) is often referred to as “radical depravity.” In other words, not one part of us is left untouched by sin. We may express our sin in more or lesser degrees, but not one of us is left untouched. 
    • As humans, we are special creations of a loving God, turning from God to form a new god to suit ourselves. However, it is Jesus who seeks and save the lost. 
    • We will see later in chapter 4 that it is for the Lord Jesus and his sufferings that we suffer. We’re not “making up” for anything, but we are conforming more and more to His image. 1 Peter 4:12-13. [READER]. 
  • Ultimately, we are preparing for our Lord’s return. 
    • Laura Ingalls Wilder’s Farmer Boy example.
    • What can we say of ourselves? If we believe that Christ will return and we are to prepare, how is that going for us? May we be found in regular service to our Master. May he give us strength to endure. May we not just endure, but may we rejoice in his sufferings and in our future inheritance.

Verse 8.

These Jews only heard like us today. They were not witnesses to his life, death, burial, and/or resurrection. What did Jesus say? “Blessed are they that believe and do not see.” Because of that, “yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory. Henry comments “This joy is inexpressible, it cannot be described by words; the best discovery is by an experimental (read experiential) taste of it; it is full of glory, full of heaven. There is much of heaven and the future glory in the present joys of improved Christians...” Paul had this experience...or, at least, a man “he knew.” 2 Corinthians 12:4 says, “How that he was caught up into paradise, and heard unspeakable words, which it is not lawful for a man to utter.” It was such an amazing event that God allowed someone to be raised up to speak against Paul in order to keep him humble. 2 Cor. 12:8-9. “ 8 For this thing I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from me. “9  And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.“

Verse 9.

We see here again a fork in the road. Is Peter referring to what is to be given specifically to God’s Chosen People at the 2nd coming, or is this what is to be given to all believers upon death/rapture/2nd coming? Isn’t the end of all of our faiths the total and complete salvation of our souls? Paul says that the Holy Spirit was given as the earnest of our salvation. In other words, we have it and will have it. We have it now in the Holy Spirit guarding us, protecting us, teaching us, praying for us, granting us power, reminding us of Christ’s teachings, bringing us into all truth. But, we still don’t have “it,” our body and soul being in heaven with Christ right now.