Sunday, March 25, 2007

Facing An End - 1 Peter 4:7-11

We all face ends in our lives. There are times when certain parts of our life come to an end - things will never be the way they were before. These can be good times, like a graduation or a birth. They can also be hard times, like the dissolution of a relationship or a death. How do we react to these situations? How do we respond to changes? Peter writes about facing big changes in 1 Peter 4:7-11.

When facing an End, Peter says we should:
  • Be Clear-Minded and Self-Controlled
    7b - Therefore be clear-minded and self-controlled so that you can pray.
  • Be Loving
    8 - Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers a multitude of sins.
  • Be Hospitable
    9 - Offer hospitality to one another without grumbling.
Use God's Words and God's Strength to do all these things to praise Him.

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Militant Christians - 1 Peter 4:1-5

What is the biggest problem facing the world today? Many would say it's the proliferation of Militant Islam. That is a problem, but really its just a symptom of a deeper issue. The real struggle that the world faces is the death of Militant Christianity. Christians have become scared to act on what they believe in, choosing to whine and complain about what is wrong instead of working and fighting to bring about good. 1 Peter 4 verses 1 through 5 gives instructions for living as a Militant Christian
  • Armed with Christ's Attitude
    v1 - Therefore, since Christ suffered in his body, arm yourselves also with the same attitude, because he who has suffered in his body is done with sin.
  • Awaiting God's Orders
    v2 - As a result, he does not live the rest of his earthly life for evil human desires, but rather for the will of God.
  • Aware of the Past but Focused on the Future
    v3, 4 - 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. They think it strange that you do not plunge with them into the same flood of dissipation, and they heap abuse on you.
  • At War!
    v5 - But they will have to give account to him who is ready to judge the living and the dead.

Sunday, March 4, 2007

It's Never Easy - 1 Peter 3 & 4

Everybody hurts... into every life a little rain must fall... it's never easy. No matter how people reference it, suffering is a part of every person's life. There is some suffering that we cause to ourselves, some that others cause and some that seems to be a matter of chance. While we cannot control all of the suffering that comes our way, we can control how we react to it. In 1 Peter we find numerous references to suffering and persecution, coming to a head in chapters 3 and 4. Here, Peter tells us about suffering itself and also how to handle it when it comes our way.
  • Suffer for the Right Reasons
  • Suffer in the Right Way
    • Relax - 3:14b -Do not be frightened.
    • Regroup - 3:16 - Keep a clear conscience.
    • Rejoice - 4:13 - Rejoice!
    • Recommit - 4:19 - Commit themselves to their creator.
  • Suffer in the Right Company