Friday, December 13, 2013

Bible Study: Lessons For The Christian Life - 1 Peter - Chapter 2

Please forgive this rough draft format, as these are my raw study notes on the epistle of 1 Peter. I feel a great sense of urgency to publish them because I’m not sure how much time we have left on this big, blue marble. Thank you for reading them. I pray that God blesses and encourages you through this material. I’m not sure of the condition of the world at the time of this publication. But at the time of its writing, early summer 2010, things are still looking pretty bleak with the economy and unemployment, and BP is taking a lot of heat over the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. Are these the first stages of birth pains? The last? God only knows. And He is very busy these days. Seek His wisdom. Encourage each other. Pray. Jesus is coming to deliver His people and judge the wicked…


Take a few minutes to pray and savor chapter 2 of 1 Peter. Then return here and ponder the thoughts, answer the questions, and be sure to leave comments about your own revelations…

2:1 – How many kinds of malice, deceit, hypocrisy, envy, and slander can you think of?

2:2 – This passage is intended for new believers, so that they may grow in their relationship with Jesus. How else can you think of that you grow in your salvation? Aren’t you simply saved or not saved? I believe this verse is talking about maturity in Christ.

2:3 – We are to crave the Lord as we would physical sustenance.

2:4 – Jesus is the living Stone, chosen by Go and rejected by men.

See Luke 7:2. highly valued.

2:5 – We are living stones, “being built into a spiritual house to be a holy priesthood, offering spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.”

Are you a chip off the Ol’ Block?

What spiritual sacrifices are you offering to God through Jesus?

2:6 – Jesus is the chosen and precious cornerstone. See Isaiah 28:16.

Do you trust in Him? Scripture says that if you do, you will never be put to shame. Jesus endured ridicule, so we can expect the same. What does “you will never be put to shame” mean to you?

2:7 – Jesus is precious to believers. But non-believers have rejected Him. See Psalm 118:22.

What do you think the non-believers were building that they rejected Jesus as a building block?

2:8 – See Isaiah 8:14. This is a powerful verse. It reminds me that EVERY knee will bow and EVERY tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord.

2:9 – Believers are “a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God”. Take a few minutes to thank Him for the privilege.

The reason that we are chosen, etc. is so we can declare His praises. How are you doing this?

2:10 – This verse conveys a sense of belonging and unity and forgiveness. How are you living this out? What can you do to improve how you are already living this?

2:11 – This verse is packed with treasure: we believers are friends of the disciples – better still, we are friends of Christ; we don’t belong to the world; we are told “to abstain from sinful desires” which tells me that we are capable of doing so through Christ; those sinful desires are at war against our souls – this is definitely a war I want to win.

What tactics are you using to win the war against sinful desires?

2:12 – Isn’t this idea exciting? Non-believers who persecute us because of our beliefs do so because of our behavior – hopefully they are witnessing those good deeds that are going to cause them to glorify God when He returns.

2:13-14 – This is challenging. Submitting to authority requires humility. Remember that God places every authority in their position. By obeying those authorities placed over you, you are obeying God.

2:15 – I consistently hear people ask what God's will is. This verse plainly says that it is His will that we should silence the ignorant talk of foolish men by doing good. Can you offer an explanation?

2:16 – Our freedom in Christ gives us permission to do many things. But we are warned not to use our freedom as an excuse to do evil. How should a servant of God live?

2:17 – How are you showing proper respect to others? How do you determine what is “proper respect”?

2:18-21 – Submission is difficult enough when the authority over you is “good and considerate”, but Peter tells slaves to also submit to those authorities who cause suffering. They are to do this because of God and because Christ suffered for us.

Who are the “slaves” Peter is addressing? Perhaps this is a cultural issue for the time meaning that slaves (and criminals) would be the only acceptable people to mistreat in this way. Today, people are abused in too many ways to count. As a bondslave to Christ, and considering how well He treats me, I will pray for strength and make a conscious effort to endure suffering for His sake.

2:21 – Jesus’ handling of His suffering is an example for us to follow.

2:22 – See Isaiah 53:7, 9. This is a great life lesson: don’t sin; don’t speak deceitfully.

2:23 – More lessons for life (I mark these “LFL” in my Bible): don’t retaliate when people insult you; don’t make threats when you are suffering; trust God.

2:24 – Because Jesus suffered and died to take our punishment, we have the privilege of dying to sin and living for righteousness. His wounds have healed us. Tell someone this week about the healing He has brought to your life.

2:25 – We believers are no longer wanderers. We have a Protector and a Champion of our souls.

• First Peter illustrates several life lessons for Christians. What is God teaching you in this chapter of scripture? How will you apply it to your life this week?
• What attributes of God do you see in this book?
• What verse of scripture seemed to be God speaking directly to you? What is He teaching you in these verses? How does He want you to respond?

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