FIRST PETER

Chapter Four

 

 

1 Peter 4:1 Forasmuch then as Christ hath suffered for us in the flesh, arm yourselves likewise with the same mind: for he that hath suffered in the flesh hath ceased from sin;

2 That he no longer should live the rest of his time in the flesh to the lusts of men, but to the will of God.

3 For the time past of our life may suffice us to have wrought the will of the Gentiles, when we walked in lasciviousness, lusts, excess of wine, revellings, banquetings, and abominable idolatries:

4 Wherein they think it strange that ye run not with them to the same excess of riot, speaking evil of you:

5 Who shall give account to him that is ready to judge the quick and the dead.

6 For for this cause was the gospel preached also to them that are dead, that they might be judged according to men in the flesh, but live according to God in the spirit.

7 But the end of all things is at hand: be ye therefore sober, and watch unto prayer.

8 And above all things have fervent charity among yourselves: for charity shall cover the multitude of sins.

9 Use hospitality one to another without grudging.

10 As every man hath received the gift, even so minister the same one to another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God.

11 If any man speak, let him speak as the oracles of God; if any man minister, let him do it as of the ability which God giveth: that God in all things may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom be praise and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.

12 Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you:

13 But rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ's sufferings; that, when his glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy.

14 If ye be reproached for the name of Christ, happy are ye; for the spirit of glory and of God resteth upon you: on their part he is evil spoken of, but on your part he is glorified.

15 But let none of you suffer as a murderer, or as a thief, or as an evildoer, or as a busybody in other men's matters.

16 Yet if any man suffer as a Christian, let him not be ashamed; but let him glorify God on this behalf.

17 For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God?

18 And if the righteous scarcely be saved, where shall the ungodly and the sinner appear?

19 Wherefore let them that suffer according to the will of God commit the keeping of their souls to him in well doing, as unto a faithful Creator.


A.  Suffering in the Flesh--  Vs. 1-2

1.  Suffering in the flesh is part of spiritual warfare.  Discuss SLSW.  They do NOT call for suffering.
Bill Bright and "Prayer and Fasting."  Interesting since Bright is a bit tubby.
David Casper regarding visit by two Baptist preachers.  Fat.  Not suffering in the flesh.

ILL.  II Cor. 12:7-10--  Paul needed this suffering to be dependent on Christ.

2.  Problem:  Many saints begin in Christ and salvation, then they live back in the flesh the rest of their life.
Col. 3:5-7--   The old way should not prevail
Heb. 13:20-21--  Live in the will of God means God is free to work in us.
I John 2:17--
 We are part of another world and eternity.

B.  The spirit of the Gentiles (Ethnos)-- Vs. 3-6

1.  Verse 3--  ETHNOS-  root of our word, "Ethnic."
Three kinds of people in the world-  Gentiles, Jews, and saints.
Jews are blind, according to Paul.
So what is this spirit in the Gentiles?  Note-   They have a WILL for this.
     Look at it in Eph. 4:17-21--  Really bad off, right?  Are people like this?  Discuss.
     Romans 1:21-32--  If God gave up on them, what can we salvage out of them?
     We can only give them the Gospel.

2.  Verse 4--  Verse one states that we will suffer.
Now, we are invited to a riot.  As we decline, we are seen as "strange."  Cf-  Titus 2:14-- We ARE "strange."
These rioters "speak evil" of us.  We should be concerned if they don't.
 Discuss.

3.  Verse 5--  This is to comfort us-- They shall be judged.

4.  Verse 6--  This alludes to Christ preaching to the dead in hell.
The Gospel it preached to dead men.  Cf-  Col. 2:13-- Dead men CAN hear the Gospel if God desires.

Can we get so busy dealing with our peculiarness that we fail to give men the Gospel?
Cf John 5:25-26--  This is the Gospel compelling us to "give life" in that we have the message.
Cf  Romans 8:2-4--  The law condemns us, and other men make sure we know it.  BUT, we are FREE             from that condemnation.  Rom. 8:1 makes that clear.
     This then is why men speak evil of us, vs. 4.

Story:  Mrs. Rose and the Jewish Dr.

C.  End Times courtesy--  Vs. 7-11

1.  Be ye therefore sober (7)--  Serious and alert--   I Thes. 5:6-8

2.  Watch unto prayer (7)--   Eph 6:18  For saints-- This is the emphasis, not on ourselves.  "Buddy system"

3.  Have fervent charity among yourselves: for charity shall cover the multitude of sins (8)--   Prov. 10:12

Fervent charity is NOT meant for the world or those in it.  Witness is not an excuse to get into fervent charity with the world.

4.  Use hospitality one to another without grudging (9)--  Romans 12:10-13

5.  As every man hath received the gift, even so minister the same one to another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God (10)--   What is the gift for?   II Cor. 8:4; I Tim. 4:14; II Tim. 1:6.

6.  If any man speak, let him speak as the oracles of God (11)--  

What are the "oracles"?-- Rom. 3:1-2-- The Word of God.  Divine absolutes, not human ideas and theories.

Such as, "Well, to me it means...."

7.  If any man minister, let him do it as of the ability which God giveth: that God in all things may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom be praise and dominion for ever and ever (11)--  

Matt. 25:14-30--  Note verse 15 re: "ability"  The Lord knows our ability.  Do we?  

Do we go to the limit of our ability?  Also, do we try to go beyond it?--   Cf. Romans 12:3

D.  Admonition Regarding Suffering--  Vs. 12-16

Verse 12-13--  Trials are normal--  "Strange"   Cf. I Cor. 10:13-- "Common"- The known experience of man.

Verse 14-16--  How to suffer--  

Vs. 14--  Happily--  Matt. 5:11-12-- This is what Christ has called us TO.

Vs. 15--  Lawfully--  Romans 13:1-5-- We are not called to resist Caesar and the non-spiritual evil.

Vs. 16--  Without shame--  Phil. 1:15-20-- When the Gospel is axalted, we need not be ashamed.

E.  Well doing and Judgment--  Vs. 17-19

Verse 17-19--  Perspective of the saint as he thinks of the wicked.         Cf. Psalm 73