1 Peter Chapter 1 Continued
We will begin this lesson by repeating the last verse of the last lesson.
1 Peter 1:7 “That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honor and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ:”
(See 1 Peter Chapter 1 for description).
1 Peter 1:8 “Whom having not seen, ye love; in whom, though now ye see [him] not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory:”
“Having not seen”: This is in the sense of His appearing (verse 7; 1 Cor. 5:7). At that time, the fiery trials that believers have endured will benefit God by bringing Him “praise and glory and honor” eternally.
Jesus says that those who believe, who have not seen, are greatly blessed.
John 20:29 “Jesus saith unto him, Thomas, because thou hast seen me, thou hast believed: blessed [are] they that have not seen, and [yet] have believed.”
This is speaking of true faith. Abraham believed, and it was counted unto him as righteousness. When we have faith like Abraham, we are counted righteous in God’s sight, as well.
Galatians 3:29 “And if ye [be] Christ’s, then are ye Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.”
It is our faith in Jesus Christ that saves us.
1 Peter 1:9 “Receiving the end of your faith, [even] the salvation of [your] souls.”
“Receiving … salvation”: This could be translated “presently receiving for yourselves.” In some sense, Christians now possess the result of their faith, a constant deliverance from the power of sin. In another sense, we are waiting to receive the full salvation of eternal glory in the redemption of our bodies (Romans 8:23).
This is just saying that the reward for believing is salvation in Jesus Christ.
Verses 10-11: The prophecy of salvation looks to the past. This section is most important, for it reveals that salvation was the object of prophecy and reveals how much the Old Testament prophets knew of Christ. The “prophets,” that is, the Old Testament prophets “searched diligently:” This emphasizes the study involved in their search.
They wanted to know when the Messiah was coming and what would be the circumstances of His coming. “The Spirit of Christ,” that is, the Holy Spirit (Romans 8:9). “Which was in them”, indicates the prophets were indwelt by the Spirit.
1 Peter 1:10 “Of which salvation the prophets have inquired and searched diligently, who prophesied of the grace [that should come] unto you:”
“Salvation: In this section, Peter looks at the greatness of salvation from the viewpoint of the divine agents who made it possible.
- Old Testament Prophets (verses 10-11);
- The Holy Spirit (verses 11-12);
- The New Testament apostles (verse 12);
- The angels (verse 12).
The prophets of old could prophesy about this salvation in Jesus, but they had no first-hand knowledge.
“Have inquired and search diligently”: The Old Testament prophets studied their own writings in order to know more about the promised salvation. Though they believed and were personally saved from their sin by that faith (through the sacrifice God would provide in Christ), they could not fully understand what was involved in the life and death of Jesus Christ (Numbers 24:17; Heb:13:39-40).
“Grace that should come”: God is by nature gracious and was so, even under the conditional Old Covenant (Exodus 34:19; John 4:2). But the prophets foretold an even greater exhibit of grace than what they had even known (Isa. 45:20-25; 52:14-15; 55:1-7; 61:1-3; Rom. 9:24-33, 10-11, 13, 20; 15:9-21).
Matthew 13:17 “For verily I say unto you, That many prophets and righteous [men] have desired to see [those things] which ye see, and have not seen [them]; and to hear [those things] which ye hear, and have not heard [them].”
We know they were aware that they were to happen in the future, but they did not have the opportunity of seeing Jesus, because He had not come. They believed that it would happen, as we see in the following verse.
Zechariah 6:12 “And speak unto him, saying, Thus speaketh the LORD of hosts, saying, Behold the man whose name [is] The BRANCH; and he shall grow up out of his place, and he shall build the temple of the LORD:”
All of the true prophets of old told similar things. They knew that He would come, and they hoped for His coming, but He did not come in their lifetimes.
1 Peter 1:11 “Searching what, or what manner of time the Spirit of Christ which was in them did signify, when it testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ, and the glory that should follow.”
“What manner of time”: “Who would be the person?” And “When would He come?” Were the questions the Old Testament prophets searched to know.
“Spirit of Christ which was in them”: Jesus Christ, in the person of the Holy Spirit, took up residence within the writers of the Old Testament, enabling them to write about the glorious salvation to be consummated in the future (2 Peter 1:19-21).
This is saying that the Spirit of Christ dwelt within these prophets.
“Signify”, in the verse above, means to make plain or real. They had visions from God that revealed to them the things that would occur at a later date. God revealed to them about the Messiah (Jesus Christ). They knew of his birth, life, ministry, death of His flesh, and of His resurrection. They knew it, because God had revealed it to them.
“Sufferings of Christ … glory that should follow”: The Old Testament prophets foresaw both the first coming, with the Messiah suffering (Isa. 53), and the Second Coming, with Messiah reigning (Isa. 32:1), without understanding the long interval of this current dispensation.
1 Peter 1:12 “Unto whom it was revealed, that not unto themselves, but unto us they did minister the things, which are now reported unto you by them that have preached the gospel unto you with the Holy Ghost sent down from heaven; which things the angels desire to look into.”
“Not unto themselves, but unto us”: The Old Testaments prophets who wrote of the coming of salvation (in verses 10-11), knew it was a future Savior who would come, and thus they were really writing for those who are on this side of the cross.
“Them that have preached the gospel”: The New Testament apostles and preachers of the gospel had the privilege of proclaiming that the prophecies written by the Old Testament prophets had come to pass (2. Cor. 6:1-2).
“Angels”, who are not themselves objects of redemption, “desire to look into” (literally, “desire to stoop to look into”): This is the same word used of Peter at the empty tomb of God (Luke 24:12).
The prophet’s ministry is not just for his generation of people. Prophecy is given to make known unto all generations the wisdom of God. Even the angels, in heaven, do not know the things revealed to these prophets through the Holy Ghost of God.
Verses 13-25: The products of salvation: hope, holiness, reverence and love.
1 Peter 1:13 “Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and hope to the end for the grace that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ;”
“Gird up the loins of your mind”: The ancient practice of gathering up one’s robes when needing to move in a hurry; here it is metaphorical applied to one’s thought process. The meaning is to pull in all the loose ends of one’s thinking, by rejecting the hindrances of the world and focusing on the future grace of God (Eph. 6:14; Co. 3:2).
“Be sober”: Spiritual sober-mindedness includes the ideas of steadfastness, self-control, clarity of mind, and moral decisiveness. The sober Christian is correctly in charge of his priorities and not intoxicated with the various allurements of the world.
In light of their great salvation, Christians, especially those undergoing suffering, should unreservedly live for the future. Anticipating the consummation of their salvation at the second coming of Christ (see verse 7).
“Grace that is to be brought unto you”: Christ’s future ministry of glorifying Christians and giving them eternal life in His presence will be the final culminating of the grace initiated at salvation (Eph. 2:7).
“Revelation of Jesus Christ”: The Greek word for “revelation” is the same word that is translated “appearing” (verse 7). Meaning the whole sequence of end-time events centered around the Second Coming.
The exhortation to set one’s hope involves an inward resolution “Gird up the loins of your mind”. The imagery is that of personal discipline and outward conduct. “Be sober (Greek nephontes): Be free of every sort of mental and spiritual intoxication. “The revelation of Jesus Christ” is the Second Advent when Jesus returns to earth to set up His kingdom.
“To gird up the loins of your mind”, means they would not allow their mind to wander. God is saying through Peter; do not let your mind run astray. Keep your thoughts close on the things of God. “Sober” here, means to not be fickle. Be serious about the things of God.
We must love God with all our heart, soul, and mind. We must guard against worldly thoughts. We must walk in the grace the Lord has provided for us. We must be still walking the path of righteousness even up until the moment the Lord Jesus Christ is revealed to us.
1 Peter 1:14 “As obedient children, not fashioning yourselves according to the former lusts in your ignorance:”
We read in the book of Samuel (1 Sam. 15:22), that to obey is better than sacrifice. The Father wants His children to be obedient to our Savior Jesus. In fact, He must be our Lord, as well as our Savior. We must crucify our flesh and its desires, and live a life separated unto the Lord. Lust of the flesh is not for the believer in Christ. We should overcome the lust of the flesh and live for Jesus.
1 Peter 1:15 “But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation;”
“Be you holy”: Holiness essentially defines the Christian’s new nature and conduct in contrast with his pre-salvation lifestyle. The reason for practicing a holy manner of living is that Christians are associated with the holy God and must treat Him and His Word with respect and reverence. We therefore glorify Him best by being like Him (see verses 16-17; Matt 5:48; Ephesians 5:1; Lev. 11:44-45; 18:30; 19:2; 20:7; 21;6-8).
Cursing and blasphemy is not the conversation of the godly. Our conversation reveals what we are in our heart. Christianity is of the heart. Out of the issue of the heart, the mouth speaketh.
1 Peter 1:16 “Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.” Christians are to be Christ-like. If we are like Christ, we should be holy, because He is holy.
Holiness is the desire and duty of every Christian. It must be in all affairs, in every condition, and towards all people. We must especially watch and pray against the sins to which we are inclined. The written word of God is the surest rule of a Christian’s life, and by this rule we are commanded to be holy every way. God makes those holy whom he saves.
“Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy”; “For I am the LORD that brings you up out of the land of Egypt, to be your God: you shall therefore be holy, for I am holy” (Lev. 11:44-45).
This command was addressed at first to the Israelites, but it is with equal propriety addressed to Christians, as the professed people of God. The foundation of the command is, that they professed to be his people, and that as his people they ought to be like their God.
Verses 17-20: The exhortation to reverence (or, godly fear): The basis for the exhortation is our relationship to the Father. The motivation for living our lives in reverence is doctrinal, “forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things.” The ones who are exhorted to live their lives in reverence (verse 17), are the ones who are exhorted to be holy (verses 14-16). They are “redeemed”, (Greek elutrothete, i.e., “brought back from sin”).
“Vain: useless, worthless. The price paid for their redemption was the “precious blood,” which was essential:
(1) Sacrificially, as “a lamb without blemish and without spot” He was perfect;
(2) Eternally, “who verily was foreordained” it was the Father’s plan and idea “before the foundation of the world,” that is, in eternity past; and
(3) Historically, “but was manifest in these last times:” a reference to Jesus’ incarnation.
1 Peter 1:17 “And if ye call on the Father, who without respect of persons judgeth according to every man’s work, pass the time of your sojourning [here] in fear:”
“If ye call on the Father”: This is another way of saying, “if you are a Christian.” The believer who knows God and that He judges the works of all His children fairly, will respect God and His evaluation of his life, and long to honor his heavenly Father.
Fear of the Father is showing great respect. If we are judging others, we are saying, we are judge. God is no respecter of persons. To be like Him we must not be a respecter of persons either. Jesus is the Judge of all the earth, who judges the works whether they be of God, or not. We should spend our time on this earth doing good.
Verses 18-19: The word “redeem” means “to purchase.” When Christ died for our sins, He paid the price that satisfied the demands of God’s holiness. The price of redemption was the blood of Christ. In explaining redemption to the Galatians, Paul used three different words that were applied to purchasing servants at the ancient slave markets.
(1) The first agorazo, meaning “to purchase in the market,” is used to explain how Christ paid the redemption price of His blood, which was sufficient to purchase every one “sold under sin” (Gal. 3:10; 2 Peter 2:1);
(2) Ekagorazo, meaning “to purchase and take home,” emphasizes that Christians have been purchased out of the marketplace and are no longer for sale (Gal. 3:13);
(3) The third word, lutroo, meaning “to purchase and give freedom,” emphasizes the liberty that belongs to a soul redeemed by God. (Gal. 4:5).
The Christian is encouraged to “stand fast” in that liberty (Gal. 5:1).
1 Peter 1:18 “Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, [as] silver and gold, from your vain conversation [received] by tradition from your fathers;”
“Redeemed”: That is, to buy back someone from bondage by the payment of a price; to set free by paying a ransom. “Redemption” was a technical term for money paid to buy back a prisoner of war.
Here it is used of the price paid to buy the freedom of one in the bondage of sin and under the curse of the law (i.e. eternal death, Gal. 3:13). The price paid to a holy God was the shed blood of His own Son (Acts 20:18; Rom. 3:24; Gal. 4:4-5; Eph. 1:7; Col. 1:14; Titus 2:14; Hebrews 9:11-17).
Silver and gold are of the earth. All things of the earth are not thought of as being godly. It is really the improper use of silver and gold that is corruptible. Mankind’s desire for excess gold and silver has made sin out of it.
The father, spoken of in the verse above, is speaking of earthly fathers. This is saying, most earthly fathers teach their children that holding gold and silver is very important. The tradition of men is to get great wealth, if possible. God teaches being humble and loving to your fellow man. Gold or silver cannot save us from the wrath of God. Gold or silver cannot redeem our souls.
1 Peter 1:19 “But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot:”
Only the blood of the Lamb of God can do away with sin. The blood of man is not without sin and could not do away with sin. Jesus Christ was God manifest in the flesh (see John 1:14). The blood of a child comes from his father. God the Holy Spirit, hovered over Mary, and she conceived of God. God was the Father of Jesus Christ. It was the blood of sinless God that paid the price for sin.
Hebrews 10:4 “For [it is] not possible that the blood of bulls and of goats should take away sins.”
We see from the Scripture above, that animal’s blood could not do away with sin either, even if it were the animal sacrifice for the sin. The blood of an animal could cover the sin for a year. It did not clear the conscience of the sinner, nor do away with his sin.
The blood of Jesus Christ, the perfect Lamb of God, was pure. Only the blood of God manifest in the flesh of man can do away with sin. The blood of Jesus abolished sin for all who believe in Him.
1 Peter 1:20 “Who verily was foreordained before the foundation of the world, but was manifest in these last times for you,”
“Foreordained” or foreknown: In eternity past, before Adam and Eve sinned, God planned the redemption of sinners through Jesus Christ (Acts 2:23; 4:27-28; 2 Timothy 1:9).
“Manifest in these last times”: This expression refers to the first coming of Jesus. In this context, “last times” describes the period between the first and second comings, in which the Rapture is always imminent (see Acts 2:17; 1 Tim. 4:1; 1 John 2:18).
The plan of salvation was planned from the foundation of the world. Jesus Christ was the one to do this, because we are His creation. Jesus was known as the Word of God in heaven. He was made real to us, when He took on the form of flesh and dwelt among us. “Manifest”, means made real.
1 Peter 1:21 “Who by him do believe in God, that raised him up from the dead, and gave him glory; that your faith and hope might be in God.”
“Gave him glory:” God, through the ascension, returned Christ to the glory that He had with Him before the world began (Luke 24:51-53; John 17:4-5; Acts 1:9-11; Phil. 2:9-11; Heb. 1:1-3; 2:9).
Jesus paid the penalty for sin for all mankind on the cross.
1 Timothy 4:10 “For therefore we both labor and suffer reproach, because we trust in the living God, who is the Savior of all men, specially of those that believe.”
Salvation is provided for all, but not all receive the salvation He has provided. Simple faith in Jesus as our Savior and believing He rose from the grave brings salvation. For some, this is too simple and they do not believe.
His atonement for our sin brings us forgiveness; His resurrection from the grave brings us hope of eternal life. Our faith in Jesus Christ justifies us before the Father.
1 Peter 1:22 “Seeing ye have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit unto unfeigned love of the brethren, [see that ye] love one another with a pure heart fervently:”
Purified in the verse above, means consecrated to God’s service. This means then that we have changed into an obedient servant to do the will of God. The Holy Spirit teaches us all Truth. If we truly love God, we will love his children.
“Unfeigned love of the brethren”: The love indicated here by Peter is the love of choice, the kind of love that can respond to a command. “Fervently” means to stretch to the limits (Luke 22:44; Acts 12:5; also Luke 10:27). Only those whose “souls” have been “purified,” i.e., saved, have the capacity to love like this. Such love exhibits itself by meeting others at the point of their need (2:17; 3:8; 4:8; also in John 13:44; Romans 12:10; Phil. 2:1-18; Heb. 13:1; 1 John 3:11).
The only way we can show love to God is by showing love to His children here on earth. This is not an outward love for show, but a true love from the heart.
1 Peter 1:23 “Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever.”
“Being born again” literally “having been born again”, refers to all believers having been regenerated by the Holy Spirit through the Word of God, which communicates His offer of salvation to mankind. Thus, our salvation rests, from the human perspective, upon our willing reception of that offer.
“Not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible”: The spiritual life implanted by the Holy Spirit to produce the new birth is unfailing and permanent.
“By the word of God”: The Spirit uses the Word to produce life. It is the truth of the gospel that saves.
The new birth mentioned here, is a birth of the spirit man. The old flesh man must be buried and the new spirit man takes his place. We bury that man of flesh in water baptism and rise a new creature in Christ. The next 2 Scriptures can say it better than I can.
John 1:13 “Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.”
John 3:6 “That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.”
Our spirit is born in Jesus Christ (the Word of God).
In verses 24-25 Peter enforces his point about the power of the Word to regenerate (by quoting from Isa. 40:6-8).
1 Peter 1:24 “For all flesh [is] as grass, and all the glory of man as the flower of grass. The grass withereth, and the flower thereof falleth away:”
Life is like the grass mentioned here. It is here and all of a sudden it is gone. The flesh of man will return to the earth from which it came. It is the spirit of man that lives on.
1 Peter 1:25 “But the word of the Lord endureth for ever. And this is the word which by the gospel is preached unto you.”
The Word of God is eternal. Jesus is the Word of God. The Word of God is also the Bible. The spoken and the written Word of God are the most powerful forces on the earth. The Word is Eternal. The gospel of Jesus Christ is the focal point of the Bible. This Word of God that is preached is the power unto salvation.
1 Peter Chapter 1 Continued Questions
- The trial of our faith is compared to what in verse 7?
- What are the two things possible for us to hear, when we stand before the Lord?
- Abraham ___________, and it was counted unto him as righteousness.
- What is the end of your faith?
- Who does verse 10 say searched diligently for salvation?
- Who is the Branch?
- What is verse 11 saying?
- Who is Messiah?
- Why did the prophets of old know of Jesus, before He came to earth?
- What is prophecy for?
- What does “gird up the loins of your mind” mean?
- What does “sober” in verse 13 mean?
- What are the Christians called in verse 14?
- What book in the Bible tells us “to obey is better than sacrifice”?
- What does our conversation reveal about us?
- How does the Father judge?
- We should spend our time on this earth _________ ______.
- What are silver and gold called in verse 18?
- Why are they called corruptible?
- What are we redeemed by?
- What lets us know that Jesus was not just a man?
- What was the only thing the blood of the animal could do?
- The blood of Jesus abolished sin for whom?
- When was it decided that the blood of Jesus would abolish sin for the believers?
- Why was Jesus chosen for the sacrifice?
- What does “manifest” mean?
- What brings salvation?
- See that ye love one another with a pure heart ____________.
- Being born again by the _______ of ____.
- What is flesh compared to in verse 24?
- The Word of the Lord endureth ___________.
- Who is the Word?
- What is the Word?