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Living Like Christ (Part 2)

1 Peter 4:1-6

We invite you to join us for worship each Sunday morning at 9:30. You can download our service on iTunes or tune in for “The Good Word” each day on AM 1230 WSAL or on Hoosier Country  103.7 FM just after 8am. Last week we learned from verse 1 that we must resolve in our hearts to suffer because we live the Christian life. We learned in verse 2 the reason we suffer is because we have changed our entire outlook on this life. Then Peter told us in first 3 the rationale for suffering is because we are expected to constantly and consistently move towards spiritual maturity. With that in mind, Peter then gives us:

IV. THE RESULTS OF SANCTIFICATION! vs. 4 Peter has explained to us in the first 3 verses decisions that are made privately within an individual’s heart. In verse 4 he is telling us when those private decisions to live a more Godly life take root in our heart – and begin to reveal themselves through our changed life and lifestyle – cause our ungodly and unsaved “cronies” then begin to malign us to for “going all churchy on them.” So beloved, those of you who have made significant deliberate choices to love and serve the Lord with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength – understand that the maltreatment in any form you are receiving from those who remain in the sin and sinfulness from which you have removed your self – is 1st a sure sign to you that the result of your sanctification is a real and showing; and 2nd  their condemnation, slander, ridicule, or other mistreatment have you is also a sure sign that the results of your sanctification– or your more Christlike lifestyle is convicting them. So be encouraged. Now notice:

V. THE REVIEW BY THE SAVIOR! vs. 5  One of the themes that keeps re-occurring throughout this letter is that the persecution, suffering, and ridicule are all only temporary and will end with this life. In just one sentence Peter the focus of his readers from the gloom of this world, to the glory of the next. Peter reminds his readers and us today, that even though it appears like, and the world wants us to think we are being shortchanged and missing out on all the “good things of life” – when we are, in fact, not missing them at all! Finally let’s consider:

VI. THE RIGHT OUTLOOK FOR THE SAINTS! vs. 6. Peter is telling us that because there is no apparent benefit to salvation, because Christians are not exempt from the effects and consequences of sin and sinfulness—so why bother? Now watch! What I just told you is what Peter is saying when he says that though (Christians are) judged in the flesh the way people/unsaved are. Or the unsaved say, you Christians suffer and die just like we do so there really isn’t any benefit to salvation. The real impact of the verse is in the final phrase, they might live in the spirit the way God does. Peter is once again pointing us toward heaven. We might say, because we are saved and God has helped us understand this life and physical death are not the end. Beloved, Peter told us back in 2:11 that we are to consider ourselves as strangers and aliens in this world, therefore, we are to abstain from evil desires that war against our soul. In this paragraph he gives us further reasons why we are to live in the manner as did our Lord, Jesus Christ. May it be the desire of our heart to live as Christ lived.

If we can help you answer your spiritual questions, call us at (574) 643-9419.

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