1 Pet 2:18-21a
INTRO: In the section of scripture we are studying the subject has been Christian liberty. Peter has dealt with social and civil responsibilities with a view to silencing the ignorance of foolish men (2:15). He has said that Christian liberty does not release one from obligations! It rather gives clues to Christians about making every obligation an opportunity for declaring Christ in our lives. In our text, Peter moves on to another common area of life in which this Christian liberty must be considered...that of ones vocation, his employment. We might, then, call this A Word to Servants.
I. A CHRISTIAN EMPLOYEE IS:
A. Submissive to his employer 2:18a
1. word servant is not common word for slave
2. it is rather a word for a wider scope of employmentcan most assuredly speak to employees of any time/place
a chain of authority in commerce is recognized here
4. masters, employers, the boss is to be respectedhere must be the basis for orderliness, productivity, contentment in ones work situation./..1 Tim 6:1
B. One who does his work well 2:20b
1. how can a Christian do less than his best?
2. limitations of talent, handicap aside, we must be people who strive for excellence in our vocations
3. Eph 6:6,7 why? because Christians view everything they do as done to/for the Lord
4. would we want to offer Him second best?
C. A person of grace 2:19a & 2:20c
1. thankworthy & acceptable are from same word
2. that word means grace...and here speaks of ones goodwill, his loving kindness, favor
3. he can, then, work well for good employers1Tim 6:2
4. he can work well for bad employers...because it is the attitude one possesses, not that of an employer, which determines our disposition and deportment
D. Certainly, an exemplary person 2:20
1. he is always putting God first-v. 19- "conscience toward
2. he is always doing his best-v. 20-do well
3. and if suffering for well doing is his lot...O.K.
4. he will bear it patientlyhe seeks no retaliation, is not a critical, negative person
5. but any suffering at the hands of others in social, civil, or vocational relationships must be always undeserved!
II. A CHRISTIAN KNOWS EVERY ROLE IS AFFECTED BY CHRIST 2:21a
A. hereunto were ye called
1. not necessarily to a place of suffering
2. rather, to a life of conviction, of goodness, of faith, of seeing the attitude of Christ in all one does
3. no conceivable role would exclude Christ and His teachings
B. Now, where all that may lead is certainly open
1. it may lead to suffering on the job, at school, etc.
2. yet, it may also lead to ones being honored by His employer, his fellows
3. and it will assuredly lead to Gods approval-see Col 3:23-25
III. ARE YOU TEMPTED TO BE A COMPLAINER2:21b
A. For all of that, there are some human temptations
1. number one is to criticize an employer, a fellow worker...or to just be a moping complainer
2. something doesnt go just right, we dont get our way
3. every business has its chronic complainers
B. Well note how Peter handles this with reference to Jesus
1. Jesus never did anything but goodhe hurt no one
2. but He was caused tremendous suffering! it was all uncalled for, unjust...He had a right to complain
3. but He didnt ... He patiently endured all of that
4. and left us an example to follow
CLOSE: Think of it. We are freed from all of the typical vocation attitudes so that we can be the verybest employee humanly possible.
Cecil A. Hutson
02 September 2001
You Must Hear the Gospel
You must hear the gospel and then understand and recognize that you are lost without Jesus Christ no matter who you are and no matter what your background is. The Bible tells us that “all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.” (Romans 3:23) Before you can be saved, you must understand that you are lost and that the only way to be saved is by obedience to the gospel of Jesus Christ. (2 Thessalonians 1:8) Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” (John 14:6) “Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.” (Acts 4:12) "So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God." (Romans 10:17)
You Must Believe
You must believe and have faith in God because “without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.” (Hebrews 11:6) But neither belief alone nor faith alone is sufficient to save. (James 2:19; James 2:24; Matthew 7:21)
You Must Repent
You must repent of your sins. (Acts 3:19) But repentance alone is not enough. The so-called “Sinner’s Prayer” that you hear so much about today from denominational preachers does not appear anywhere in the Bible. Indeed, nowhere in the Bible was anyone ever told to pray the “Sinner’s Prayer” to be saved. By contrast, there are numerous examples showing that prayer alone does not save. Saul, for example, prayed following his meeting with Jesus on the road to Damascus (Acts 9:11), but Saul was still in his sins when Ananias met him three days later (Acts 22:16). Cornelius prayed to God always, and yet there was something else he needed to do to be saved (Acts 10:2, 6, 33, 48). If prayer alone did not save Saul or Cornelius, prayer alone will not save you. You must obey the gospel. (2 Thess. 1:8)
You Must Confess
You must confess that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. (Romans 10:9-10) Note that you do NOT need to make Jesus “Lord of your life.” Why? Because Jesus is already Lord of your life whether or not you have obeyed his gospel. Indeed, we obey him, not to make him Lord, but because he already is Lord. (Acts 2:36) Also, no one in the Bible was ever told to just “accept Jesus as your personal savior.” We must confess that Jesus is the Son of God, but, as with faith and repentance, confession alone does not save. (Matthew 7:21)
You Must Be Baptized
Having believed, repented, and confessed that Jesus is the Son of God, you must be baptized for the remission of your sins. (Acts 2:38) It is at this point (and not before) that your sins are forgiven. (Acts 22:16) It is impossible to proclaim the gospel of Jesus Christ without teaching the absolute necessity of baptism for salvation. (Acts 8:35-36; Romans 6:3-4; 1 Peter 3:21) Anyone who responds to the question in Acts 2:37 with an answer that contradicts Acts 2:38 is NOT proclaiming the gospel of Jesus Christ!
You Must Be Faithful Unto Death
Once you are saved, God adds you to his church and writes your name in the Book of Life. (Acts 2:47; Philippians 4:3) To continue in God’s grace, you must continue to serve God faithfully until death. Unless they remain faithful, those who are in God’s grace will fall from grace, and those whose names are in the Book of Life will have their names blotted out of that book. (Revelation 2:10; Revelation 3:5; Galatians 5:4)