2010-10-10: Fighting Through Your Suffering

Sermon: Fighting Through Your Suffering
Speaker: Pastor Val Watkins
Duration: 34:54
Size: 15.9 MB

New Life In The Same Old Place
“Fighting Through Your Suffering”
1 Peter 4:1-6

I. Your Top Ten

C.S. Lewis wrote, We were promised sufferings. They were part of the program. We were even told, “Blessed are they that mourn.”

II. The Passage: “Arm Yourselves” (4:1-6)

This is a military term Peter is using here.

In the suffering you are currently experiencing. In the suffering that is to come, are you ready to fight?

A. Fighting to Respond Like Jesus (4:1-2)

Peter is telling us that because Jesus, the Son of God, God in human flesh suffered as we suffer, we have a perfect example to follow.

Peter is reminding them that the one who is willing to suffer for Christ and/or suffer like Christ, demonstrates that he or she has put away the old life and is committed to the new.

C.S. Lewis – God, who foresaw your tribulation, has specially armed you to go through it, not without pain but without stain.

B. Fighting to Flee “Human Passions” (4:3-5)

But do you see that the contrast from verse 2 is still here, the contrast between “human passions” or human desires and God’s will, or what God desires.

Instead of fighting to respond like Jesus, they were being tempted to give up and give in, to go back to their old lifestyle.

A past, present, and future perspective on our sinful responses should convince us that such a choice is always the wrong choice.

C. Fighting to Have Hope (4:6)

Some of them wrongly assumed that death would keep the deceased from partaking in Jesus’ return and ultimate victory.

When a follower of Jesus dies, we should not mourn like those without hope. We will mourn, but we should also rejoice.

When we suffer, we need to fight to respond like Jesus; which means we need to fight to flee “human passions” and very often, that means fighting to have hope in the face of fear.

III. The Rest of Your Time

And because of this incredible truth, in light of these incredible truths, we have to ask, from this point out what will you do with “the rest of your time“.

So what will it take for us to fight through our suffering?

Suffering is inevitable, but how you respond and what you choose to do is up to you.

Only faith in Jesus can free us to fight through our sufferings, so that God is honored, even in the worst of times.

Next Week
“What To Do At The End Of The World”

1 Peter 4:7-11

2010-11-03: Christ-Centered Suffering

Sermon: Christ-Centered Suffering
Speaker: Pastor Val Watkins
Duration: 29:46
Size: 13.6 MB

New Life In The Same Old Place
“Christ-Centered Suffering”
1 Peter 3:13-22

I. Establishing the Problem: Suffering as a Christian (3:13-14,17,20)

Remember, the whole theme of this book is built around the concept of Peter’s audience, “spiritual exiles or aliens” in this world because they have been born again in Jesus.

I think this passage even speaks to those who suffer more generally.

II. Establishing the Perspective: Honoring Christ as Holy (3:18,20-22)

As they wrestle with the reality of suffering for their faith, Peter is pointing them back to the object of their faith.

Well, it all makes sense because Jesus is God in human flesh.

It means living our lives in the reality of who He is and what He’s done for us.

A. In light of His righteous and redemptive suffering (3:18a)

That’s what Jesus did, isn’t it? He suffered for doing good according to the will, the plan of God.

Our prayer is that as we suffer we will shine, so that God will use our faith to give our opponent faith.

B. In light of His spectacular and spiritual transformation (3:18b)

As they wrestled with their own suffering, Peter’s audience had to remember that Jesus suffered to the point of death.

One day we also will be made alive in the spiritual realm, by the power of the Holy Spirit.

C. In light of His proven and powerful salvation (3:20-21)

When we suffer, no matter how difficult our circumstances seem, God will ultimately rescue us.

We appeal to God for a good conscience when we seek His forgiveness through Christ.

D. In light of His absolute and authoritative position (3:22)

When we feel like our circumstances are too powerful, we need to remember that “angels, authorities, and power [have] been subjected to him.”

III. Suffering but Shining

When our hearts are set on the reality of our incomparable Jesus, we will have hope in our suffering, and we will be ready to reach out fearlessly for Christ, in both word and deed.

Suffering should not keep our focus on ourselves, it should cause us to look for opportunities to do good for others.

It’s all possible because Christ suffered once for sins, the righteous for the unrighteous, that he might bring us to God.

Next Week
“Fighting Through Your Suffering”

1 Peter 4:1-6

2010-09-26: When Every Curse Is A Sneeze

Sermon: When Every Curse Is A Sneeze
Speaker: Pastor Val Watkins
Duration: 30:55
Size: 14.1 MB

New Life In The Same Old Place
“When Every Curse Is A Sneeze”
1 Peter 3:8-12

I. The Most Common Blessing

For most people, the only time they bless someone or ask God to bless someone is after a sneeze.

A. Called to a Life of Blessing (3:9)

If you were to bless someone, how would you do it (assuming they didn’t sneeze)?

To bless is to do “good” in some way, not “evil”. It is to verbally help, not verbally abuse.

Do not repay evil for evil or reviling for reviling, but on the contrary, bless, for to this you were called, that you may obtain a blessing.

It is a heart that wants God’s goodness to pour down on our opponent in such a way that our blessing is used to make them into a blesser.

B. Called to a Community of Blessing (3:8)

After specifically addressing different groups in these churches (i.e. servants, wives, husbands), here in 3:8 he brings it back to everyone in the church.

It is our strength as a local church family that God wants to use in our lives individually in the face of difficult times.

God’s design for us as a church is that we would love one another as brothers and sisters, siblings who look out for each other.

We are called to a life of blessing, even with those who hurt us. And we are called to that life together.

C. Called to Inherit a Blessing (3:10-12)

We have been called to bless, and that calling results in our being blessed; “to obtain a blessing”.

We give blessings in light of the fact that we will receive the greatest blessing.

For a people tempted to fear in the face of opposition, Peter reminds them that God is in control, and that as they bless those who curse them, God has blessed, is blessing, and will bless them.

II. Blessing Because of His Blessing

Are we as a church encouraging one another, are we standing with one another or are we responding with anger and bitterness when a brother or sister hurts us?

When we treat every curse as if it were a sneeze, that is, when we treat every curse as an opportunity to respond with a blessing.

Next Week
“Christ-Centered Suffering”

1 Peter 3:13-22

2010-09-19: Being Jesus’ Wife

Sermon: Being Jesus’ Wife
Speaker: Pastor Val Watkins
Duration: 30:03
Size: 13.7 MB

New Life In The Same Old Place
“Being Jesus’ Wife”
1 Peter 3:1-7

I. The Passage: “Won Without a Word” (3:1-7)

First Peter is writing to his audience to remind them of their identity as spiritual aliens, redeemed and born again by faith in Jesus Christ. (1:1-3, 14-16, 18-21)

Second in light of this new identity live lives that are separate from the world, and yet, shining the hope of Christ to the world. (2:9, 11-12)

Third, one way they can live this separate but shining kind of life, is to be submissive to the authority structures that God has placed in this world, as a way to demonstrate they are submissive to God. (2:13a; 2:16)

Peter is writing here for none other than Jesus’ wife…all of them.

A. Jesus’ Wife is Submissive and Shining (3:1-2)

But remember, Peter’s entire discussion about submission is not about equality.

Peter is extremely concerned with the message these Christians were sending to non-Christians about the faith.

Ladies, whether you are the wife of a godly man, or the wife of a worldly man, remember that your actions in most cases speak louder than words.

B. Jesus’ Wife Knows True Beauty is about Her Spirit (3:3-4)

Peter’s argument is not against braided hair or gold or clothing, per se.

This kind of imperishable beauty comes from knowing that, because of what Jesus has done, you are beautiful in the sight of the only one whose opinion really matters.

C. Jesus’ Wife is in The Company of Great Women (3:5-6)

The greatest women in history were those with the greatest faith in the greatness of God; women like Abraham’s wife, Sarah.

The submission that Sarah modeled is not one based on fear of what a husband might do our say. It is based on faith.

D. Jesus’ Wife Needs a Husband who is Jesus’ Man (3:7)

A husband who is Jesus’ man will have the heart of Christ for this woman who is striving to be Jesus’ wife; to be God’s woman.

When you are not understanding; when you do not show her honor, God is not interested in your supposedly pious prayers.

Gentlemen, please hear me, for believing couples, the point is still the same: Jesus’ wife needs a husband who is Jesus’ man.

II. A Desperate Housewife or a Desperate Faith

God is not looking for desperate housewives. He is looking for wives who have a desperate faith, a faith that holds on to Christ as its only hope.

True submission is only possible through the power of the gospel.

Next Week
“When Every Curse Is A Sneeze”

1 Peter 3:8-12

2010-09-12: Enduring By Entrusting

Sermon: Enduring By Entrusting
Speaker: Pastor Val Watkins
Duration: 29:03
Size: 13.2 MB

New Life In The Same Old Place
“Enduring By Entrusting”
1 Peter 2:18-25

I. Power and Persecution

How do you respond in a situation like this? What do you say? What do you do? What would most people do? How would most people react?

II. The Passage: “When…One Endures Sorrows” (2:18-25)

As strangers in a strange world because of their faith in Jesus, Peter is encouraging these Christians to consider how their daily lives can hinder or help them as they attempt to represent Jesus.

In our passage this morning, Peter is continuing that discussion about subjection or submission. But this time, he has a new context he wants to address:

A. God’s Call for Endurance (2:18-20)

This word specifically refers to slaves or servants who are working, not in a field or a shop, but in a household.

Now, since slavery is no longer an institution in our culture, passages like this are typically connected, and rightfully so, to the modern context of the employer/employee relationship.

Endurance is literally, “bearing up under”; it is persevering in the right attitude and actions because your heart and mind are set on God.

But what does it look like to endure? And why should we endure?

B. God’s Example for Endurance (2:21-23)

God has given us a perfect example of this kind of endurance in suffering: Jesus.

To be mindful of God goes hand in hand with entrusting ourselves to God.

How in the world is a normal person supposed to bear up under this kind of unfair treatment and continue being submissive to a person like this?

C. God’s Provision for Endurance (2:24-25)

Why did Christ endure in the face of unjust suffering, because he was bearing our sins in his body on the cross.

We can because through faith in Jesus, we can “die to sin and live to righteousness“.

We can entrust ourselves and our circumstances to God believing that God will make right what is wrong.

III. The Purpose of Our Endurance

Jesus endured for the good of others; for our good. And so we endure for the same purpose.

Our endurance is focused on the good of others and the glory of God.

Next Week
“Being Jesus”

1 Peter 3:1-7