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Sharing REAL Hope

The Gospel for REAL Life: A Study of 1 Peter  •  Sermon  •  Submitted   •  Presented   •  48:22
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As we live our lives focused on the HOPE we have in Christ, people will notice. We need to be ready to give an answer--the reason for our HOPE.

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1 Peter 3:13 NIV
Who is going to harm you if you are eager to do good?
1 Peter 3:13
Romans 8:31 NIV
What, then, shall we say in response to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?
Good morning, and Happy 4th of July weekend.
This morning we started the service with the Star Spangled Banner. Do you remember the setting for that song?
It was September of 1814. The British completed their war with France, and now turned their attention to the US and the war that started in 1812. They soundly defeated the American forces at Bladensburg, entered Washington, and burned the capital building and the White House. They moved up the Potomac, and captured Alexandria, VA without firing a shot.
Now they were coming to Baltimore.
Francis Scott Key and another lawyer were sent to the British to secure the release of a prominent doctor who had been taken prisoner. The British were willing to release the doctor, however, since Key was there to hear some of the planning for the attack on Baltimore, he was held until after the battle.
September 13th started a 25 hour bombardment of Fort McHenry. Can you imagine what it would have been like for Key as the night wore on, hearing the bombardment of the fort? Seeing the rockets red glare? It must have been pretty hopeless.
But then… by dawn’s morning light… Hope was reborn.
Today is much like September 13th, 1814. People around us are seeing their world falling apart. Terrorism. Government infighting. Scandals at the highest levels. Corruption rampant. Malware crippling businesses, hospitals and even countries. Senseless killings. And if they are able to set those things aside as distant, then all-to-close to home they find: cancer, heart issues, strokes, lymes disease, rising costs, and falling incomes, family feuds, divorce and more. Just the time they think things are looking-up, all-to-often, something else goes wrong. People are losing hope. You see it in their faces.
Why the hopelessness? They place their hope in the wrong places.
Government - remember the reactions after the election? How about now?
Good job - people are losing jobs.
Good body - working out. But sickness and frailty is the human plight.
Good relationships - but fighting comes. Divorce destroys.
Illustration: Nice home on the hill at Greg’s.
People really are hopeless in this world. That is not anything new.
Yes, there are times when people put their hope on something, things go well, and they have hope. However, too often, people get to the point of no hope because circumstances are not good.
I was reading this week of prisoners in the holocaust, and prisoners of war during the Korean War that lost hope. What happens when someone loses all hope? They stop getting out of bed. No matter what happens to them. They lie there in their own excrement until they die. That is hopeless.
Why were they hopeless? Because their circumstances were horrible! The worst you could imagine. And, they had nothing in which to place hope.
Peter wrote to remind the believers of his day to remind believers that we do have hope.
Peter says we should use that.
Yes, we suffer trials of all kinds just like the rest of the world around us. But, we are different. We have HOPE! REAL Hope!
1 Peter 1:3 NIV
Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,
And also in , and .
1 Peter 1:13 NIV
Therefore, with minds that are alert and fully sober, set your hope on the grace to be brought to you when Jesus Christ is revealed at his coming.
He has promised an inheritance to us! He has promised to give glory, honor and praise to us for endurance in faith.
1 Peter 1:21 NIV
Through him you believe in God, who raised him from the dead and glorified him, and so your faith and hope are in God.
We have a living hope. A hope that is there, no matter the trials we go through. Jesus, the resurrected savior! He has conquered the worst of enemies, even death! He has risen! He has promised to be with us! He is preparing a place for us! He will not abandon us to the grave. He has promised that we will be with Him in glory forever!
He has promised an inheritance to us! He has promised to give glory, honor and praise to us for endurance in faith.
Our faith and hope are in Jesus. Our faith and hope are in God. And that makes all the difference in the world.
And in the passage today, Peter encourages us to share that REAL Hope.
And in the passage today, Peter encourages us to share that REAL Hope.
Pray. Read the passage for today.
1 Peter 3:13–22 NIV84
Who is going to harm you if you are eager to do good? But even if you should suffer for what is right, you are blessed. “Do not fear what they fear; do not be frightened.” But in your hearts set apart Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect, keeping a clear conscience, so that those who speak maliciously against your good behavior in Christ may be ashamed of their slander. It is better, if it is God’s will, to suffer for doing good than for doing evil. For Christ died for sins once for all, the righteous for the unrighteous, to bring you to God. He was put to death in the body but made alive by the Spirit, through whom also he went and preached to the spirits in prison who disobeyed long ago when God waited patiently in the days of Noah while the ark was being built. In it only a few people, eight in all, were saved through water, and this water symbolizes baptism that now saves you also—not the removal of dirt from the body but the pledge of a good conscience toward God. It saves you by the resurrection of Jesus Christ, who has gone into heaven and is at God’s right hand—with angels, authorities and powers in submission to him.

REAL Hope

Peter started his letter reminding us of our REAL Hope in Christ. He has exhorted us to Set/Fix our Hope on Christ and the blessings which will be ours at His coming.
He then exhorted the believers that we are being built together as living stones to worship the Lord. We need each other.
Then, as we have seen over the past weeks, Peter addressed some of the areas of trials we face. We face trials and opposition: from authorities, in the work place, in our homes, and in our personal relationships, even within the church.
So far, Peter has exhorted us to submit—to play our proper role in each situation, and do what is right. To be likeminded setting our hope on Christ and things above instead of things on this earth. To be sympathetic to others, to love one-another, to be compassionate and forgiving to those who sin, and to be humble. To be like Christ and repay evil with blessing. Knowing that in doing these things, we will inherit a blessing.
In all of this, Peter keeps coming back to the idea that we need that REAL Hope—setting our hope in Jesus!
Now in this passage, Peter reminds is addressing that again, encouraging us to the REAL Hope in the face of opposition.
What is REAL Hope?
1 Peter 3:13 NIV
Who is going to harm you if you are eager to do good?
Some would put their hope here.
If I do what is right, good will follow. Opposition will cease.
Really?
How’s that workin’ for ya?
There is REAL Hope, and there is Worldly Hope.
Worldly hope is what I have when I plant my garden. I plant in hope that if I do what is right, I will get sweet corn, peas and beans.
Worldly hope sometimes pans out, and I am happy.
But, Worldly hope does not always work. It is not guaranteed. And often, I do not get what I want for an outcome. If that is my only hope, I have a very bitter, despairing existence.
Just because you do the right thing, does not mean others will.
Worldly Hope
Denies reality
Based on wishful thinking
Based on unbiblical views
Worldly hope is what I have when I plant my garden. I plant in hope that if I do what is right, I will get sweet corn, peas and beans.
Worldly hope sometimes pans out, and I am happy.
But, Worldly hope does not always work. It is not guaranteed. And often, I do not get what I want for an outcome. If that is my only hope, I have a very bitter, despairing existence.
Just because you do the right thing, does not mean others will.
REAL Hope
Based on Biblical Truth
Based on Biblical Truth like Abraham.
Romans 4:18–22 NIV
Against all hope, Abraham in hope believed and so became the father of many nations, just as it had been said to him, “So shall your offspring be.” Without weakening in his faith, he faced the fact that his body was as good as dead—since he was about a hundred years old—and that Sarah’s womb was also dead. Yet he did not waver through unbelief regarding the promise of God, but was strengthened in his faith and gave glory to God, being fully persuaded that God had power to do what he had promised. This is why “it was credited to him as righteousness.”
Abraham had a promise from God. That is a sure thing. Not wishful thinking. Not a denial of reality, but facing reality in light of God’s promises!
REAL Hope
Based on Biblical Truth
Based on Holistic View
What is a Holistic view? It is not a mispelling. It is the view that takes into account God’s Holy Plan! Not just the past. Not just the present. Not just the Future. But the Holy plan that encompasses all: Past, Present and Future!
Paul had this kind of view.
Philippians 1:12–14 NIV
Now I want you to know, brothers and sisters, that what has happened to me has actually served to advance the gospel. As a result, it has become clear throughout the whole palace guard and to everyone else that I am in chains for Christ. And because of my chains, most of the brothers and sisters have become confident in the Lord and dare all the more to proclaim the gospel without fear.
Philippians 1:12-14
He interpreted his past (He was imprisoned years before in Jerusalem before he traveled to Rome and spent time imprisoned there.) in view of God’s Holy plan.
Philippians 1:19–20 NIV
for I know that through your prayers and God’s provision of the Spirit of Jesus Christ what has happened to me will turn out for my deliverance. I eagerly expect and hope that I will in no way be ashamed, but will have sufficient courage so that now as always Christ will be exalted in my body, whether by life or by death.
He interpreted His present in light of the future. He will be delivered. And so,
Philippians 2:17 NIV
But even if I am being poured out like a drink offering on the sacrifice and service coming from your faith, I am glad and rejoice with all of you.
He could have hope and endurance through it all!
He kept his eyes not only on his own deliverance, but on what God was doing in and for others around him.
2 Timothy 2:8–10 NIV
Remember Jesus Christ, raised from the dead, descended from David. This is my gospel, for which I am suffering even to the point of being chained like a criminal. But God’s word is not chained. Therefore I endure everything for the sake of the elect, that they too may obtain the salvation that is in Christ Jesus, with eternal glory.
REAL Hope
Based on Biblical Truth
Based on Holistic View
Based on Reality
Abraham and Paul had hope in the face of reality. Not in denial of reality.
And that is what Peter wants for us. He wants us to have REAL Hope.
Based on Biblical Truth - the promises
Based on Holistic View - God is with us, God is watching, and expecting us to behave as His children so He can reward us.
Based on Reality - we are facing trials of many kinds.
And in today’s passage, just because you do what is right, does not mean everyone will be good to you. So,
1 Peter 1:14–15 NIV
As obedient children, do not conform to the evil desires you had when you lived in ignorance. But just as he who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do;
1 Peter 3:14-1
Most will not want to harm you if you continue to do good to them. And even if they do, according to , they will one day be ashamed.
If you do good, most wius that if we do what is right, we do not have to fear people. Most will not want to harm you if you continue to do good to them. And even if they do, according to , they will one day be ashamed.
1 Peter 3:14 NIV
But even if you should suffer for what is right, you are blessed. “Do not fear their threats; do not be frightened.”
This is a quote of Isaiah
I break it down this way:
Most will not harm you if you continue to do good
If they do:
You will be blessed by God
So, do not fear
Set Christ as Lord in your heart
This is a quote of Isaiah
Isaiah 8:12–13 NIV
“Do not call conspiracy everything this people calls a conspiracy; do not fear what they fear, and do not dread it. The Lord Almighty is the one you are to regard as holy, he is the one you are to fear, he is the one you are to dread.
Verse 15 continues the thought with set apart Christ as Lord in your hearts. This is also from Isaiah. Side note: LORD Almighty in Isaiah, Jesus in 1 Peter
The context is that Assyria is going to invade and defeat most of Judah.
Godly reverence is the major concern, not invasion and defeat.
Face the reality. You are going to have trials. So, be sure that you set Christ as Lord. Set your Hope on Him!!
As you do that, people will take notice.
Then,
1 Peter 3:15 NIV
But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect,
Be prepared to give an answer for your hope
Be prepared to give an answer for your hope
Gently
With Respect
Keeping a clear Conscience
Ultimately ...
1 Peter 3:16 NIV
keeping a clear conscience, so that those who speak maliciously against your good behavior in Christ may be ashamed of their slander.
They will be ashamed
Peter then shows us that this is being like Christ in verses 17-22.
Like Christ
Suffered
He was righteous
He brought us to God
Put to death
Made alive
Announced victory!
Baptism
Like Noah
Face opposition
Go through the storm
World was cleansed
Have victory in God
We too
Face opposition
Go through the storm
Are cleansed
Have victory in Christ!
REAL Hope
Based on Biblical Truth
Based on Holistic View
Based on Reality
So, what about me?
If REAL Hope is based on Biblical Truth
5 I wait for the LORD,m my whole being waits,n
we need to be in the word. - I wait for the LORD,m my whole being waits, and in his word I put my hope.
and in his wordo I put my hope.
We need to be in the word daily to find, to be reminded where our REAL Hope lies. We need those precious promises of God each day!
It is based on a Holistic View. We need to pray
and ask God to open our eyes to what He is doing, like Paul did. .
Based on Reality.
God has told us we will have trials. We will have struggles. But He is with us. He will provide what we need in this life. AND, this world is not our home. We are foreigners here. But He has a home for us, and a reward. Set your hopes there! The REALITY of Eternity!!
Based on Reality. God has told us we will have trials. We will have struggles. But He is with us. He will provide what we need in this life. AND, this world is not our home. We are foreigners here. But He has a home for us, and a reward. Set your hopes there! The REALITY of Eternity!!
All of this is a matter of will. .
Jesus is our Hope. . So, set your hope in Jesus. Take time to grow in your relationship with him and you will find hope rising. Without him we cannot do this.
The New International Version (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2011), .
Colossians 4:6 NIV
Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.
Romans 8:31 NIV
What, then, shall we say in response to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?
are a reference to Isaiah 8:12-13.
Isaiah 8:12–13 NIV
“Do not call conspiracy everything this people calls a conspiracy; do not fear what they fear, and do not dread it. The Lord Almighty is the one you are to regard as holy, he is the one you are to fear, he is the one you are to dread.
Side note: LORD Almighty in Isaiah, Jesus in 1 Peter
Godly reverence is the major concern, not invasion and defeat
HOPE
1 Peter 1:3 NIV
Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,
1 Peter 1:21 NIV
Through him you believe in God, who raised him from the dead and glorified him, and so your faith and hope are in God.
Romans 4:18 NIV
Against all hope, Abraham in hope believed and so became the father of many nations, just as it had been said to him, “So shall your offspring be.”
Ephesians 2:12 NIV
remember that at that time you were separate from Christ, excluded from citizenship in Israel and foreigners to the covenants of the promise, without hope and without God in the world.
Titus 2:13 NIV
while we wait for the blessed hope—the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ,
Gentleness/Meekness trust God to work in hearts and minds.
2 Timothy 2:24–25 NIV
And the Lord’s servant must not be quarrelsome but must be kind to everyone, able to teach, not resentful. Opponents must be gently instructed, in the hope that God will grant them repentance leading them to a knowledge of the truth,
Rather, “flesh” refers to Christ in his human sphere of life and “spirit” refers to Christ in his resurrected sphere of life Edwin A. Blum, “1 Peter,” in The Expositor’s Bible Commentary: Hebrews through Revelation, ed. Frank E. Gaebelein, vol. 12 (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing House, 1981), 242.
The point: we go through suffering to victory...
Job and Psalms have the most. suffering and biblical hope go together.
What do I mean by biblical hope? hope that is assured.
plant a garden in hope… but it is not guaranteed.
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