Summary and Conclusion: 1 Peter 2:13–3:7

Lessons on Living as Exiles, Part 17

So, what we’re going to do is conclude. So, I’ve got a conclusion page, which was forty pages in, but it’s coming to the top now.

And in a sense, that’s okay because everything between now and when I thought we’d end, maybe at the end of 1 Peter 4 or something like that, is repetition. The same principles are applied over and over again in 1 Peter 3:8 following of this chapter. It’s applying the principles that were given to slaves to everybody about not returning evil for evil and not reviling for reviling. The very same phrases applied to everybody.

So, here’s my summary about, in a sense, 1 Peter, but what we’ve seen so far. It might be good. Let’s see if I can get back to a set of slides way back at the beginning.

The Ultimate Goal of 1 Peter

Okay, here was the summary when we started 1 Peter 1, and at the end of that summary, we said that because of the sanctifying work of Christ and the new knowledge of our hope, new passions are being created in us. And out of those new passions are coming new behaviors of loving each other and being holy. These are designed to lead the Gentiles to glorify God, as we declare the excellencies of him who called us out of darkness into light.

And then everything we’ve been looking at with regard to government, slaves, or relationships of over and under, and wives and husbands, all of that has been a fleshing out of this behavior here in 1 Peter 2:12 in particular, where let your conduct be beautiful among the Gentiles, that they may see your good deeds, and — like Jesus says — give glory to your Father in heaven or — as Peter says — “on the day of visitation” (1 Peter 2:12).

So, I think basically Peter’s been saying to us, “The issue is: Have you found Christ? Has he moved into your life and begun to transform emotions, which are yielding up behaviors that are so counterintuitive that people ask a reason for the hope that is in you, and you can hopefully, by your good deeds, lead them to glorify God?’”

So the ultimate goal of the book is to bring others into the enjoyment of the wonderful light and glorify God.

Looking Forward and Backward

So the key is hope, looking forward and Christ-looking backward, right? Think of that.

“Set your hope fully on the grace that is being brought to you” (1 Peter 1:13). And in this behavior, remember, he died for you, and he died to set you an example. So as you stand here now in America, Birmingham in a moment, and you look forward and at the end, you see an inheritance coming to you — imperishable, undefiled, unfading.

And in this, you rejoice with joy, unutterable and full of glory, and that joy streams back into the present and in this moment of difficulty in your family or in your employment or in our culture, you are abounding with joy and that joy is overflowing in a capacity to return good for evil and to do good deeds that cause the world to look and say, “Hmm. Hmm. They’re hoping in something besides what I’m hoping in. What is that?” So that’s one direction you look.

And the other way he argued is you look back to Christ, the argument for the servants and then the argument again in the text we were just about to get to for all of us is Christ died for you. So you look back and you remember, “I’m forgiven, I’m justified, I’m loved, I’m accepted, and all the junk in my life is covered.”

Love covers a multitude of sins. And as it’s covered, I have a peaceful, tranquil. I think what he says about women should be true of all of us, a peaceful, tranquil, fearless spirit, out of which I can now return good for evil so that people look and say, “So your life must be rooted in something different. Because my life leads me to fight back and to return evil for evil and so you must have a different root.” And so you’ve got a root forward in the inheritance that’s coming. You’ve got a root backward in Jesus Christ.

And then the other part of that looking backward is he entrusted to him who judges justly. So you look back and you say, “Okay, Christ took on him so much suffering and so much reviling and so much threatening, and he didn’t return good for evil. How did he do it? He handed over to him who judges justly.

Trusting God Amidst Cultural Challenges

So if we look at America, you don’t need to get your back up in an emotionally paralyzing way about all the stuff that’s going on in our culture that looks so disappointing and so catastrophically dangerous for our land. You don’t need to go to bed losing sleep or be seething with anger because you say, on the one hand, I’m just handing that over to God. God is going to do right by this.

My job is not to fix everything. I can’t fix everything. What is my job? My job is to look to my inheritance and to look to my Lord and in the middle here, out of unutterable and glorified joy, treat people better than they deserve. So that they will look and maybe in the midst of naming it as evil, “You, Christians, are evil in what you believe about sexuality or about whatever, you’re evil,” in that very moment, they may be shamed and then brought to trust in him, and trust your soul to a faithful creator with fearless joy and bold good deeds and a meek readiness to suffer. Let’s pray.

Father in heaven, we’ve only seen some of Peter’s word to the churches that were on the brink of something catastrophic, it seems, the fiery ordeal that was going to come upon them. But you’ve shown us enough now. I pray we would live this. help me with my family, with the ministries I’m connected with, with the neighborhood I live in, the city of Minneapolis, the state of Minnesota, the nation of America, the nations that we want to reach, I pray that I and we would live these things out in a miraculous way, a miraculous way. Holy Spirit, come and seal these words to us, I pray, in Jesus’s name.