THE FIRST EPISTLE OF PETER

 

Note:  This is an epistle of great importance, in which we understand the real depth of a Christian life. We know two verse in Acts where Peter and John said - Acts 5:29 - We ought to obey God rather than man

Acts 4:19 -Whether it is right in the sight of God to listen to you more than to God, you judge.

In this epistle we understand a great change coming into the life of Paul

>> He was so quick in anger and reaction (John 18:10) – but God made him meek and gentle

>> He was not much educated or he was afraid (denied Jesus in front of a little girl (denied Jesus 3 times) and two others but God made Him strong and bold and wise (Acts 4:13)

 

>> Math 16:18 - And I also say to you that you are Peter, and on this rock(Petra) I will build My church, and the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it. ( We know that its through Peter the first Gospel preaching, Christian Baptism, Church, Pastor, Lord Supper etc came into service.

>> For that plan of God to work in His life – He left his boat and net and followed Jesus (his dedication) – follow me…. (Math 4:18-20)

 

 

Chapter-1

Verse 1 – Peter also worked in the churches of Asia minor (present Turkey)

>> He is writing to the pilgrims there – so the believers are not of that place also, they might have run from some other places to this place.

 

Verse 2 –Elect according to the foreknowledge of God ( God is proceeding with his selection and His plans  (foreknowledge – which He already has for you – planned long before).

>> To become according to that, grace upon you will be multiplied – if you ask for it.

 

Verses 3 & 4 – Praise God – for the hope of life we got through the resurrection of Jesus

>> And for the eternal heaven and an inheritance He has reserved for me (not in earth)

>> what are the promises in Bible – 2 Peter 1:4

>> Reserved – Read Heb 4:1 and  3:8

 (a share alongwith Jesus – Joint heirs – Rom 8)

 

Verse 5 – We are prepared by the power of God – through faith (blindly believe God’s word and obey His counsel)

>> For salvation – which is ready to be revealed in the last time.

 

(Now I need to receive it with all patience and obedience)

Mal – verse 4- kept safe – by the power of God

 

Verse 6 – When various trials (many and of different type) come in your life – greatly rejoice.

>> Mathew 5:12 - Rejoice and be exceedingly glad, for great is your reward in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you

>> Act 14:22 - strengthening the souls of the disciples, exhorting them to continue in the faith, and saying, “We must through many tribulations enter the kingdom of God.”

>> James 1:2,3 – the verse 12 – Count it  a joy – He is Blessed

 

Verse 7 – John 14:15 & 23 – If you love me you will obey( and keep) my word

>> 1 John 5:2,3 – its not burdensome

 

That the genuineness of your faith – may be proved – is it original or not

We all say faith – but when testing comes – are we able to trust in him only or we run there and here proving to the world that my Lord is not Almighty (we have to prove it through our life)

>> We think – Christian life is like this – we say – we trust in him, I have faith in him – he is my Lord and my deliverer – BUT when problem comes we forget him completely and trust in this world and again at the time of testimony – we say miraculous deliverance – my Lord saved me – WHO ARE WE CHEATING ??

 

>> When God tests the genuineness  of your faith is tested and you win – then as it is like Gold (more precious) – when tested to fire – how the glory increases, your glory and praise and honor (all by God) will be revealed at his coming (also in verse 5)(otherwise the opposite – shame – rejected and left behind for eternal tormenting (in this world and in the world to come)

 

Verses 8 & 9 – We love him(more than anything) even though we haven’t seen him  - and we believe and trust in Him.

>> Because of that great hope and trust,

you receive – inexpressible joy,  full of glory

and at the end – eternal salvation (life)

 

Verses 10 & 11 – the prophets didn’t know what they ministered as they were before Jesus, but their prophesies were for a salvation to come, eventhough they didn’t receive it.

 

Verse 12 – The old testament prophets revealed about the salvation – not for them – but for us – HOW SPECIAL WE ARE

>> They (OT prophets – prophesied about this new testament church – and how they will be redeemed – they revealed it by the Holy spirit.)

>> Even the Angels have peeped into it – this program of salvation and finally becoming share holders with Jesus – because we are His bride.

>> Angels didn’t get it – O.T saints didn’t get it – and we got it – Do you NOW understand its VALUE – How precious is this program of salvation.

Angels are always obedient and work only for God – still Lord says –

>> Heb 1: 13, 14  - But to which of the angels has He ever said: “ Sit at My right hand, Till I make Your enemies Your footstool”?

Are they not all ministering spirits sent forth to minister for those who will inherit salvation?

 

Verse 13 – If you understood how great the heavenly promises and eternal life is – then make firm your mind (no other desire which moves your mind away)

-be vigilant (careful) – always chance of deviating from the real truth

-and fully hope (this whole epistle is about hope) - concentrate on the grace that you are going to get at the coming of Lord Jesus

 

Verse 14 – Be obedient and prepared to have a change in your life

>> All what you have left – you used to do – do not accept it again

 

Verse 15 – Let all our conduct be in holiness (Stay away from all sinful areas and disobedience)

>> Holiness makes our spiritual life grow, and gives us confidence to come near God, otherwise we will be away.

 

Verse 16 – Why holiness is needed

Because God is holy, no other way to be accepted by God.

 

Verse 17 – God judges without partiality (So your stay here should be in fear)

>> Not to make you afraid – But think serious – this is un-partial judgment  - the judge (Jesus) will show no grace or mercy on that day of judgment

>> Let their conduct be known – their holiness, faith, love and hope

 

Verse 18 – In Old testament people were redeemed by paying a prize to the church  - in certain shekels (weight) of gold or silver, but now – not by your offering or you paying any price.

>> As in the Old testament it say – the wages of sin is death,

>> So really you should die as a price for your sins

>> But here Lord paid the complete price (His last drop of blood) – so live in fear – His precious blood –

Ψ How great the price is, that great the punishment will also be, if we reject His counsel

 

Verse 22 – You have been purified and joined to Lord in sincere love, so love your brethren in the same love.

 

Verse 23 – You are not born of corruptible seed

John 6:63 – the words which I spoke to you – they are spirit and life

Acts 1:8 – working power

 

Mark 4:19,20 – to be transformed as a good ground and be fruitful

1 Thess 2:13 – The word which effectively works in you

 

Chapter-2

 

Verse 1 – Therefore - so it is a continuation of the last verses (23-25) of chapter 1.

>> Here it is said – For the word of God to grow – leave aside all the leaven.

Mark 8:15 - Then He charged them, saying, “Take heed, beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and the leaven of Herod.”

 

>> Leave all malice (all worldly character) and deceit (only true and truth – only that will endure)

>> Hypocrisy – you think that you are spiritual, you think what all you are doing is correct.

>> Envy  - The bubbling from inside when your friend or brother or neighbor has a new opening in life or gets something great.

>> And all evil speaking – Lets try not to talk wrong against an other person.

 

>> Leave aside or be separated from all this

 

Verse 2 – Throw away all this and like a new born baby – look at that tenderness and openness – desire the pure milk - undiluted ( how a baby cries till it is full with its mothers milk) – the word of God

>> so that you may grow thereby.

>>Ephesians 4:15 - …may grow up in all things into Him… Christ .

>> Acts 20:32 - So now, brethren, I commend you to God and to the word of His grace, which is able to build you up and give you an inheritance among all those who are sanctified.

 

Verse 3 – If you have tasted that the Lord is gracious

>> Ps 34:8 - Oh, taste and see that the LORD is good; Blessed is the man who trusts in Him! (So taste and understand the your Lord is Almighty)

>> Today people don’t want to seek His face (to know about His strength and Holiness) but they just want to see His hand – Lord let your hand be revealed, touch me, heal me, bless me.

>> Ps 27:8 - hen You said, “Seek My face,”    My heart said to You, “Your face, LORD, I will seek.”

But What did Isaiah see (Ish chapt 6) – the holiness of God

 

Verse 4 – A living stone – Jesus – his word are spirit and life – in-corruptible seed

If Jesus was like that – if you follow Him (only if you want to) – you will also be rejected by men but chosen by God and precious.

 

Verse 5 – When many rejected stones stand together (with a change in life), we are built up together as a spiritual house – a Holy priesthood

>> Look at what the expectation of Lord is

>> Why – to offer Him spiritual sacrifice (which should be acceptable to God) – May the Lord witness about us.

 

Verse 6 – It is taken from Ish 28:16

It proves that Christ is the Corner stone (and we are stones built on it in its level.

He is the head of Christ that is why Chief Shepherd – Chief Cornerstone etc

>> And blindly believe that – He who trusts in the Lord shall never be ashamed

 

Verse 7 and 8  – Taken from Ps 118:22 and Ish 8:14

>> Those who believe (means those who are completely obedient) – for them Jesus is precious.

>> for those who are disobedient (those who do not fear God) – the same Jesus is going to be a stumbling block and a rock of offense

 

8 – They have to be obedient to the word for which they are appointed

 

>> 1 Kings 6:7 - And the temple, when it was being built, was built with stone finished at the quarry, so that no hammer or chisel or any iron tool was heard in the temple while it was being built.

Ψ That is why Lord is shaping us before we be a part of the Lord great heavenly program – THE NEW JERUSALEM – fitly joint together

 

Verse 9  – You are a

Chosen generation - John 15:16 You did not choose me, but I chose you

A royal priesthood – to work for Jesus always (children of king of kings)-Math 24(45,46)

Who was called as priesthood in O.T – Levi – why – Exodus 32:20, 26-29 (complete obedience)

A Holy nation- to be Holy and Blameless

 

His own special people – so we are to be extra-ordinary special – whose specialty – God’s own family (you are the family of God (Eph 2:19)

 

Why – that you may proclaim about Jesus who brought you from darkness to His marvelous light

>> Philip 2:15 - that you may become blameless and harmless, children of God without fault in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world,

>> Titus 2:14,15 - who gave Himself for us, that He might redeem us from every lawless deed and purify for Himself His own special people, zealous for good works. Speak these things, exhort, and rebuke with all authority. Let no one despise you.

>> John 17:26 - And I have declared to them (to the whole world) Your name, and will declare it, that the love with which You loved Me may be in them, and I in them.”

 

Verse 10 – Before we didn’t have the right to call Him – Abba Father, but now His family – al this through Lord’s mercy and Grace

 

Verse 11 – Again reminding you that - you are travelers and pilgrims –

>> So abstain from fleshly lust which war against your soul – that is what weakens your spiritual life – that is what hinders you from receiving the fullness of God.

·        Strangers – Not of this world, will not be accepted in this world, cannot live or do as this world – so there is a difference in our lifestyle and all dealings. Our behavior and talking might be strange for this world.

>> Hebrew 11:9 - By faith he dwelt in the land of promise as in a foreign country, dwelling in tents with Isaac and Jacob, the heirs with him of the same promise;

>> Hebrew 11:13 - These all died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them afar off were assured of them,[c] embraced them and confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth.

(Because the promises were not for this world – so they did not receive it in a lifetime – exceeding great and precious promises (2 Peter 1:4)

 

>> Math 19:27 - Then Peter answered and said to Him, “See, we have left all and followed You. Therefore what shall we get

(Next verse Jesus said – when Jesus will sit on the throne – you will also – Again in Rev 3:21 – to sit with Jesus on His throne.)

** Will Lord Jesus simply say so – or will he really make us sit on glorious thrones ?

 

Verse 12 – When Lord touches them – whom He has wants to make His children – the good dealing and the good words which you have shared should come to their mind – which will strengthen them to be a child of God.

>> Many a times – it happens the other way – when Lord touches them – they think about the bitter experiences they had from children of God earlier and never try to taste the Lord – thinking this is all cheating.

>> You will have to settle accounts in heaven for that – so start loving your neighbor or colleague  - who might have done wrong to you.

 

Verses 13 & 14 – You should obey all rules and have a good witness – where you live and work – then only what word you say – they will also accept.

>> If I share the word – but my life is not exemplary – they word which I share – they will not accept it – but through it in the dustbin.

 

Verse 15 – The will of God is like this – That by your heavenly character and works, you will make satan ashamed – none of his tricks are going to work

>> Doing good is not some charitable work but as is led by the Holy spirit – ones which Lord tell you to do – which is useful for the kingdom of God.

 

Verse 17 – Honor all people. But more than all – “Fear God – Honor the King”

 

Verses 18 - 20 – A believer must be very faithful in his works and all external dealing, mainly where he/she is working

>> Math 25:21,23 – faithful in little things - Lord will make you Lord over many things (its not you whi become – it is Lord who promotes.

 

Verse 21 – Christ also suffered – as an example  - so follow His footsteps.

>> The path of the cross - Jesus is the example – will anyone say that I don’t want – you are defaming Him.

 

Verses 23 & 24 – Christ suffered for you and me.

>> By His wound and stripes – we got salvation and healing.

 

Verse 25 – There was a time in all our lives – a time in which Jesus was not so important – or He was not a part of my life.

>> But at Lord time – he has made us closer and closer to Him – and Jesus is now the Shepherd and Overseer of my soul

>> The controller of my soul

 

So let things go according to the plan of God

 

Chapter-3

 

Here we see this chapter starts with family, then church

 

As Home is the first school in our life. Some people who haven’t got their basic lessons at home, which ever international school you put them – its very hard for a change.

Likewise only good exemplary spiritual families can represent the body of Christ – only them both Christ and the world will accept.

>> That’s why after telling us about our heavenly calling as Royal priesthood and holy nation, immediately the Holy spirit is telling us about our family.

 

Verse 1 – When people have doubt concerning this part. Specially in this modern world – when we look at others.

World today believes in equal rights – and why to respect and why to love

>> In these verses Lord spoke through Peter

>> Now lets see what Lord spoke through Paul says in Ephesians 5:22-25,   26,27,  32,33. (Eph 5:23 – Christ is the head of the church)

 

Verses 5 & 6 – Holy women – who trusted in the Lord

Ψ Was not bothered about adorning

Ψ They were submissive to their husband

6 – as Sarah obeyed Abraham calling him Lord

 

Verse 7 – Husbands likewise –

Ψ dwell with understanding

Ψ giving honor to the wife (as to a weaker vessel) – its clearly written in the Bible by Lord – so wives don’t try to be the stronger vessel.

Ψ Love your wife as yourself

 

>> Usually what we see is – in flesh – this selfishness is there

Ψ Wife things about her well being her relatives and her matter, likewise husbands also think about his relatives and his matters – no unity or oneness

Ψ And then they sit together for prayer – will that prayer be heard by God – NO

>> So that their prayers might not be hindered (by satan)

>> First let the family be united – then prayer – then evangelism

 

>>So if the family should stand strong – Christ – Husband  - wife

Then none of satan’s games are going to work in your life – that’s when he will be ashamed.

>> Eccl 4:12 - …..And a threefold cord is not quickly broken

 

Verses 8 & 17 – From this verse onwards it deals with how believers should be.

Ψ Unity is the main factor

 

9 – Do not do evil for evil, fighting for fighting, but pray for them with all meekness – so that whatever wrong they did for you – Lord will make a blessing.

It’s a mystery world will not understand – but our Lord promises us

 

Verses 10-12 – taken from Psalms 34:12-16

Take care of your tongue – stay away from lies, deceit and things which will make a problem.

>> Understand that for every word – you have to give account –

Means its all recorded there – so its not lost – its all kept safe and will be revealed on the judgment day.

>> Math 12:36,37 - But I say to you that for every idle word men may speak, they will give account of it in the day of judgment.

For by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned.”

>> 1 Cor 6:10 - nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners will inherit the kingdom of God.

Vain talking and idle babbling which will harm our eternity.

 

Verse 17 – Lord is seeing and recording everything – So if you suffer for righteousness, surely its not a lose or shame, but Lord will account it for our blessing

If Jesus says so – Blindly believe it without any doubt and you will see the work of God in your life.

 

Chapter- 4

 

Again from this chapter we are going to learn what all suffering brings in our life

Verse 1 – Because Christ suffered for us in flesh – Therefore –

ARM YOURSELF – Be Prepared - to go through the same way

>> For that you should have the same mind of Jesus.

Verse 2 – As you go through the sufferings – you are preparing yourself and being strengthened --

>> To live according to the will of God

>> And not according to the lusts of men (Rom 8:6,13)

 

Now we live according to our lust, but the suffering which God allows makes us hate our lust, forsake it and re-submit yourselves to the will of God.

 

Verse 3 –  We once walked in all this – at that time there was no blame

Verse 4 –  But now as a change is coming to our life , People will make fun of you and blame you – that now you are not walking with them.

So the world noticed a separation and a change in you, that is the – new lifestyle in Jesus, as now we are led by the spirit – and not by the world.

 

Verse 5 –  They will have to give account to the Holy One – for making fun of us and for not knowing this righteous judge (Jesus) through us.

We should also be cautious that Jesus is going to judge us also.

 

Verse 6 –  He needs to judge everyone that is why Jesus even went to the Seoul to preach Gospel to the dead (all people who lived in this world Before Christ).

And made us as witnesses as evangelist now in this world, some people accept Jesus, many deny.

 

Verse 7 –  As the final judgment is very close and the end of all things is at hand –

>> so be very serious

>> and watchful in prayer – because not possible to be faithful without His strength and His counsel

>> Titus 2:12,13 – denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly in the present age.....looking for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ,

 

Verses 8-10  – So be in the love of God – help and pray for each other

Without sincere love from heart – you can’t grow in the Lord

Grow in love, helping others, hospitality – all this should be guided by the spirit of God – because all this is for encouraging a person to be strong in the Lord.

So it is not for our benefit, it is for the kingdom of God so it should be guided by the spirit of God –

Because Lord knows what is in the heart of different people, only God knows their personal life – so when God guides there is no chance for devil to play a game.

 

Verse 11 –   A minister of God should also minister the oracles of GOD, not His own idealogoies

But by the spirit of God so the benefit is for Jesus and building up on the kingdom of God

 

Verse 12 –   Do not count it strange by the fiery trial which comes in your life

Its all by the Lord and Lord wants to prepare you, nothing else is going to happen. God knows what he is doing so dont think strange – God is in control so like Abraham, Prophet Samuel, Moses, Joseph, David etc – submit to the Lord and say –

Here your servant – what is that you want me to do for you.

>> Acts 9:16 – For I will show him how many things he must suffer for My name’s sake.

>> Prov 24:10 –  If you faint in the day of adversity, Your strength is small.

 

Verses 13 & 14 –  When you go through great trial – rejoice exceedingly – your glory is increasing

That glory is going to be revealed at His coming

>> That is when you are really blessed by God – because he is with you in this trial

 

Verse 16 –   when you suffer – glorify God for this

 

Verse 17 –   We understood this mystery and are being transformed for His glory

But let us also have a burden for those who got many chances to obey the word of God but not taking it serious.

 

Verse 18 – It’s a verse taken from Prov 11:31

>> If the really righteous and faithful – they are also just scarcely saved (the test was really tough – like a IAS or any competitive exams – we know how much hard work, concentration time and dedication is needed to pass such an exam. They kept their sleep and all entertainment aside – till they pass that really tough exam – oh – just went through)

>> Then what will be the situation of the ungodly

 

Verse 19 – When we go through extreme suffering – just submit yourselves to the will of God – knowing that you are in the hands of the faithful creator.

 

Chapter- 5

 

Verse 1 – To all the elders – again Peter is reminding the elders that they will also have to go through extreme suffering

>>Some say – only Paul’s says a lot about suffering. But here in the whole first epistle of Peter – (Peter is the first God chosen builder of the church) apostle is clearly explaining this mystery of suffering,

>> that when Jesus appears – the more you go through suffering here – the more glory will be revealed on that great day.

>> Peter – I was a partaker of suffering here – and to the elders he says – I will be a partaker of the glory at His coming – alongwith you.

 

>> The glory is going to be revealed – some people think that God is talking about the riches which is going to be revealed through our lives in this world.

>> 1 Peter 1:13 - …..hope fully upon the grace that is to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ

>> Rom 8:18 - For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.

We know all this – but when we go through extreme suffering – we rebel with God – question, murmur and finally become depressed – not able to accept the comfort and grace Lord is ready to give us.

 

Verse 2 – To the Shepherd of the church –

>> As we read Ezekiel 34 :1 – 16 – We will know what duty God has given a shepherd and what he will have to give account to the Lord.

 

>> They should be overseers – with responsibility –

not by compulsion – the ministry of the Lord is never to be done –

because a prophet told

because my parents told

because I couldn’t excel in studies or didn’t get any other job – but it should be entrusted by God – otherwise please don’t blaspheme the name of the Lord.

 

>> Not for dishonest gains – but eagerly (with great love and desire for the Lord)

 

Verse 3 – Not as beings Lords (rulers) over those God entrusted you, but as good examples.

 

Verse 4 – Because the shepherd should give account to the chief shepherd – Jesus. So every shepherd should understand that a shepherd is not working for any organization but Jesus is the head over every shepherd.

>> Then you will receive the glory

>> indescribable glory – do you know the greatness of the heavenly glory.

**If so, you will not give importance to the worldly matters and lose that great glory = like Adam and Eve did.

 

Verse 5 – Likewise – to the younger or new believers –

>> Submit yourselves to the elders,

>> Everyone should be humble and submissive – because God hates and resists (against) the proud and arrogant (opposite to humbleness)

>> But God gives grace to the humble

 

Verse 6 – Why should we be humble – because God will only lift the humble

>> Math 23:12 (also in Luke 14:11  ) - And whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted.

>> James 4:10 - Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and He will lift you up

 

Verse 7 & 8 – Be sober (awake)  - Be vigilant (cautious and alert)

>> Because your enemy – the devil – is always searching whom he may swallow

>> You can only resist (fight with him and have victory) if you are strong in faith.

>> Also don’t be depressed by any suffering you are now going through. Understand that not only you – all those who follow the footsteps of Jesus have to go through these sufferings

>> 2 Tim 3:12 - Yes, and all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution.

>> Acts 14:22 - strengthening the souls of the disciples, exhorting them to continue in the faith, and saying, “We must through many tribulations enter the kingdom of God.”

>> 1 Peter 2:21 - For to this you were called, because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that you should follow His steps

 

Verse 10 – After you have suffered a little while – through the suffering God will –

>> Perfect you

>> Establish you

>> Strengthen and settle you

 

Verse 11 – What a wonderful God and a wonderful plan He has for us – so to that God be all the glory and dominion

 

Verse 13 – Your sister church here in Rome (Babylon – a great city of sin and idol worship) and brother Mark – maybe the pastor there greets you

Verse 14 – Because we are one family