1 Peter Week 2: Who we are as children of God

1 Peter Week 2: Who we are as children of God

Here is the next in our series of “Talk Notes.” Really don’t know if these are useful or not, but I often am looking for someone to give me a rough outline so this might work that for you. This is the second in our series on 1 Peter. We are just doing 3 lessons grand total so we won’t be covering the whole book. I wanted to add a zip file of the slides I used, but I couldn’t get them to upload. For the “new name” bit I found a picture of a geek, a sad girl, a sad dog, an ugly goat, and a kid. 

Who we are as children of God

So we are in the middle of a quick look through 1 Peter. We looked last week about how this was a letter written or the churches of Asia Minor. We are assuming that Peter is at Rome at the time of this writing and he sends the letter here

Show the slide of Asia Minor

Since he addressed it to all of these different churches we assume that it was a circular letter that moved from place to place being read by the churches that were there.

So last week we looked at chapter 1 and how we are supposed to live holy lives, and how that holiness is motivated by Jesus’ love for us. We are going to look at tonight what your new name really is once you become a Christian and then we are going to look at what it means that God calls you his people and how we need to pursue God in light of all of this other stuff.

We are going to start by reading 1 Peter 2:1-10

1 Peter 2:1–10 (HCSB)

So rid yourselves of all malice, all deceit, hypocrisy, envy, and all slander. 2 Like newborn infants, desire the pure spiritual milk, so that you may grow by it for your salvation, 3 since you have tasted that the Lord is good. 4 Coming to Him, a living stone—rejected by men but chosen and valuable to God— 5 you yourselves, as living stones, are being built into a spiritual house for a holy priesthood to offer spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. 6 For it is contained in Scripture:
Look! I lay a stone in Zion,
a chosen and honored cornerstone,
and the one who believes in Him
will never be put to shame!
7 So honor will come to you who believe, but for the unbelieving,
The stone that the builders rejected—
this One has become the cornerstone,
8 and
A stone to stumble over,
and a rock to trip over.
They stumble because they disobey the message; they were destined for this.
9 But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood,
a holy nation, a people for His possession,
so that you may proclaim the praises
of the One who called you out of darkness
into His marvelous light.
10 Once you were not a people,
but now you are God’s people;
you had not received mercy,
but now you have received mercy.

Now I think there are 3 big concepts here and I am going to take them in reverse order of how they are presented because it makes a little bit more sense when you look at it this way.

First things first let’s take a look at who we are.

We who were far away have been brought close.

Let’s look at verse 10. This language is actually echoing a story that happened in the old testament it is from the story of Hosea and Gomer. God tells Hosea to marry an adulterous woman and after Hosea does this Gomer has two children who get some pretty terrible names.

Hosea 1:6 (HCSB)
6 She conceived again and gave birth to a daughter, and the Lord said to him:
Name her No Compassion,
for I will no longer have compassion
on the house of Israel.
I will certainly take them away.

 

Hosea 1:8–9 (HCSB)
8 After Gomer had weaned No Compassion, she conceived and gave birth to a son. 9 Then the Lord said:
Name him Not My People,
for you are not My people,
and I will not be your God.

So God calls these two kids No Compassion or No Mercy and Not my people.

How would you like to go through life with those names?

What do you think would be a terrible name that people could name someone today that would speak to our country? Let them come up with a few names. Here are two of my suggestions: Hello this is my son “Everyone’s Racist” and my Daughter “Greedy Rich People”

The reason why he gives them these names is because He wants Israel to know that because of her sin God is turning his back on them and is going to give them over to their enemies. Hosea uses their names as a way of saying what God is going to do. Then through the old and new testament these names are echoed again and again.

The reason why these names come up isn’t because Hosea is weird and naming his kids weird things. The reason why these come up is because of what else Hosea says. Hosea doesn’t stop by saying that God’s people will be driven away. He says that God will call them not my people but eventually God will call them back and will restore their name.

Hosea 2:23 (HCSB)
23 I will sow her in the land for Myself,
and I will have compassion
on No Compassion;
I will say to Not My People:
You are My people,
and he will say, “You are My God.”
Those who were not my people will become my people.

So now we see that same idea here in 1 Peter. You who were once not a people are now God’s people. And you who didn’t have mercy before now have mercy. God has changed the label of these people.

Remember last week how in the video it showed the people getting a new label. Well, this is what happens. God takes those who are on the outside, those who are orphans, who are sinners, who are enemies and he makes them his children. God takes those who are not his people and gives them a new name.

It is amazing how much a new name changes things:

Show a collection of pictures and have people write up different names for them. (see zip file)

So you who were away from God are pulled close to God and given a new name. What is the name that you are given (look back at verse 9)

9 But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood,
a holy nation, a people for His possession,
so that you may proclaim the praises
of the One who called you out of darkness
into His marvelous light.

What do you think it means that we are a chosen race?

Remember that Peter is talking to a mainly gentile audience so he is taking the language that is used to talk about Israel and is now applying it to all Christians.

What does you think it means that we are a royal priesthood? Why Royal? What’s the priest part?

This has two big ideas. One as priest we have access to God and as priest we are to be be the conduits of God in our world. But not only are we priest, but we are royal priests. We are members of the royal family who are tasked with being a vessel for taking the message and love of God to the nations.

What do you think it means that we are a holy nation?

God has called us to be holy so we are supposed to be set apart from the world, And here is the one that I really like. We are a people for His possession. We belong to God. Whatever else happens we are his. So we who were far away have been brought close

We who were useless are made important

1 Peter 2:4

Coming to Him, a living stone—rejected by men but chosen and valuable to God— 5 you yourselves, as living stones, are being built into a spiritual house for a holy priesthood to offer spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.

 

We have become living stones being built into the temple of God. Now we are all the temple of God, but this is talking specifically about the new nation that God is creating in Christianity. We are being built into a spiritual house.

All of us have become part of this house. We have become stones that make up the wall.

Let’s build some walls and then pull one stone out. (Give groups of students sugar cubes and let them build small walls. Then pull some of the cubes out and see if the wall falls down. )

It makes the wall weaker, and if you pull out enough the wall will crumble

We are valuable because we have been called by God. Each piece of the wall is important, and we are being built into a living wall that God is using to take his message around the world. You may have been rejected, thrown down, put out, or just ignored, but you are a living stone and you are important. You who were useless have been made important.

That leads us to the last thing.

Because you are brought close and made valuable

We need to live up to our calling.

1 Peter 2:1-3 So rid yourselves of all malice, all deceit, hypocrisy, envy, and all slander. 2 Like newborn infants, desire the pure spiritual milk, so that you may grow by it for your salvation, 3 since you have tasted that the Lord is good.

So you need to get the sin out. The list of sins that Peter lists here is important because each of these sins tears at the fabric of the community. If we are being built into a living wall. These are sins that weaken the wall.

Let’s walk through these a bit. What is malice? (Ill will towards one another. It is easy to see how )

What is deceit? Lying to others breaks down the fabric of community

How about Hypocrisy? Like lying putting on a false face destroys trust and makes others feel like they can’t live up to what you are projecting.

Envy? Envy is the opposite of love. Envy hopes for others to get less so that you can feel better.

Slander? (Nothing destroys community faster than talking bad about people. Slander will weaken the wall that we are building.)

Each of these are things that people deal with that we need to remove and then we need to crave spiritual milk so that we can grow. We can’t be simply who we have been. We can’t rest on remembering a time in the past when we were spiritual.

We must continue to grow.

You were far away and then you were brought close. You were useless and were made valuable, so you need to continue to grow into this calling of God. It is because we have tasted and seen that God is good that we are able to continually grow into his image.

Pray

Files

From “I Never” to Always

From “I Never” to Always

I have a new idea and that is to post the notes from my lessons here on Nailscars.com. I won’t do it every time, but I write a very manuscript form so you should be able to at least get some ideas. I don’t really have the time to explain everything, but I will try to make some quick notes when I can.

Theme: Getting a new start, Habits

Today we are looking at creating habits that can up us, but also habits that can make a difference in the world. We tend to think of making changes in our life as things that help us be better, but it is more than that. You have been given a mission to make a difference in this world and the habits that you form either help or hurt that.
So to get things started lets play “I Never”

(I never is a game where everyone sits in chairs in a circle. There is one less chair than students so the person without a chair has to stand in the middle. The middle person says something they have never done (I have never jumped out of plane, I have never eaten green beans, etc). The students who are sitting down have to get up and find a new place to sit if they HAVE done what the person in the middle HAS NOT done. When people start to move the person in the middle tries to find a seat and then there is one person left out again who continues with the game) 

There are some things that you have never done and others that you have. One of the big problems with our world right now are some of the I Never’s of Christians. There are lots of church people who have never shared their faith, who have never reached out to help someone who was in need, who have never seriously considered what it means to follow Christ.
So tonight we are going to look at what it means to go from I Never to Always
OK, let’s have a third of you to look up
Philippians 3:12–14 (HCSB)
12 Not that I have already reached the goal or am already fully mature, but I make every effort to take hold of it because I also have been taken hold of by Christ Jesus. 13 Brothers, I do not consider myself to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and reaching forward to what is ahead, 14 I pursue as my goal the prize promised by God’s heavenly call in Christ Jesus.

The next third can look up

2 Peter 1:5–8 (HCSB)
5 For this very reason, make every effort to supplement your faith with goodness, goodness with knowledge, 6 knowledge with self-control, self-control with endurance, endurance with godliness, 7 godliness with brotherly affection, and brotherly affection with love. 8 For if these qualities are yours and are increasing, they will keep you from being useless or unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.

The last third check out

1 Corinthians 9:24–27 (HCSB)
24 Don’t you know that the runners in a stadium all race, but only one receives the prize? Run in such a way to win the prize. 25 Now everyone who competes exercises self-control in everything. However, they do it to receive a crown that will fade away, but we a crown that will never fade away. 26 Therefore I do not run like one who runs aimlessly or box like one beating the air. 27 Instead, I discipline my body and bring it under strict control, so that after preaching to others, I myself will not be disqualified.

You see we have a mission, that is greater than a simple race. We are not running for a prize that will fade, but for a prize that will never fade away. The things that we are doing for God’s kingdom here will impact not only now, but also eternity.
So we need to practice disciple and adopt habits that help us to pursue the goal.
But let’s start there: What’s the goal?
The goal is to be more like Jesus
Why it is important to know the goal?
I need two volunteers
We are going to have a race. OK, GO!
What do you need to actually race? You need a destination right? OK, first one to the other door gets a free drink. Go!
You can’t race without a goal and you can’t grow closer to Christ without getting an idea of the goal which is ultimately to be ore like Jesus.
So what are some habits that you can adopt to help you to pursue this goal?
Bible reading, quiet time, prayer, sin management
Learning to see people, reaching out to the needy, having a heart for others
Those are all habits that we know we need to do, but they are hard. So how do we help impliment those? Well they start with right choices.
We are going to play a game here about choices.
Play 4 on a couch (sorry this is hard to explain, but I think you can search for it)
In this game you had to remember what had gone before and use that information to make wise choices. In the same way you need to remember that you have a mission and you need to make choices that help fulfill that mission.
Turn in your Bible to Hebrews 12:1-2

Hebrews 12:1–2 (HCSB)
12 Therefore, since we also have such a large cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us lay aside every weight and the sin that so easily ensnares us. Let us run with endurance the race that lies before us, 2 keeping our eyes on Jesus, the source and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that lay before Him endured a cross and despised the shame and has sat down at the right hand of God’s throne.

We need to keep our eyes on Jesus.
So let’s get practical for a moment. It doesn’t take long for a practice to become a habit, it just takes some daily remembering for a while and then it becomes like second nature.
I want to challenge you to 30 days of a new God habit. You can choose what that habit will be. If you pray only for 5 minutes then pray for 10. If you don’t read your Bible at home then commit to read it. Maybe you need to find someone to be kind to every day. Whatever it is find a way that you can 1) do it easily and 2) keep track of it (like in a journal) and do it for 30 days. If you can come back to me next month with a journal or record of what you have done I will give you a prize.

The Right Search Term

The Right Search Term

Yesterday I wanted a list of all of the poetry in the Bible. I knew about the books of poetry, but I wanted to find the poems that are in the other books too. I also wanted to find some of the hymns and such too. Basically I was looking for all of the places where the modern translations indent to make it look like a poem. 

OK, so here was the problem, I couldn’t figure out exactly how to search fo that stuff. I have Logos Bible version 6 and I was pretty sure that there was something in that program that could search for poems, but for the life of me I couldn’t thin of how to look for it. I also couldn’t figure out how to find what I was looking for on google. 

After floundering around a bit I figured out that what I was wanting to search for was literary types and that I could do for those. 

What it made me realize was that in this world of lots of information it is vital to know how to look for the answers. 

I have said many times if my son (who is 10) is taught high school the same way that I was then someone isn’t doing their job. There is no reason for him to memorize vast stores of dates and facts. Instead what he will need in this world of information is a general guideline of events or ideas and then the skills to know how to go and look for the right information. 

He needs to be taught the right search terms. 

As church leaders and youth pastors I think our role in teaching the Bible needs to evolve as well. It is more important for us to teach students were to go find the answers than it is to try to stuff them full of facts. We need to be teaching them the right way to go and discover truth. It is much harder to teach that way, but it’s a whole new world out there and we need to teach accordingly.