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November 19, 2020 12:01 am
In a world that appears to be growing darker and darker, Christians can draw strength from the promise of God's preserving grace. Today, Steven Lawson shows us from the book of 1 Peter that the doctrines of grace are ultimately doctrines of comfort.
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Today I'm Renewing Your Mind. What does it mean to be born again to be born again means to be born, and it remains to be but got again why we can't birth ourselves into the kingdom. We can't cause this to happen, but it is God who sovereignly regenerates us, and he causes us to be born again from three says salvation belongs to the sums up the central message of redemption in the Bible.
The music every aspect of our salvation is dependent on God from start to finish. That's what were studying this week on Renewing Your Mind as we explore the doctrines of grace.
Look at her teaching fellow Dr. Steven was we find ourselves again in the book of first Peter, I want to invite you to take your Bible and returning with me to first Peter as we continue our study of the doctrines of grace as coming through the pen of the apostle Peter as we noted last time Peter has been under the instruction and discipleship of the Lord Jesus Christ and as Peter now carries out his ministry, both in preaching in the book of acts, as well as writing in his first and second epistles we find much the same that he had learned from the Lord Jesus Christ.
He is a sovereign grace preacher and author and so in this session we want to begin with definite atonement and if you'll turn with me to first Peter chapter 1 in verses 18 and 19 a very signature passage on the death of Christ purchasing our salvation. I want you to note in verse 18 he says, knowing that you were not redeemed with perishable things like silver or gold, from your futile way of life inherited from your forefathers, what is important for us to note is the word you that's a very limited restricted word. It is as wide as what we see in verse 15. Those who are called, but like the holy one who called you those who are called in verse 15 are those for whom Christ died. In verse 18. As he continues in verse 19 but with precious blood, as of a lamb unblemished and spotless, the blood of Christ when he says precious blood is a Greek word that means valuable, costly of great value. It also means honored and esteemed the blood of Christ is the most valuable blood and it is the most valuable commodity. If you will that can be given to purchase our salvation, but it is focused upon you, who are the called of Jesus Christ. Those who are called are those for whom Christ has died.
But look at the next verse in verse 24 he was foreknown before the foundation of the world, meaning he has been foreordained for this death, and he has been for loved by the father but has appeared in these last times for the sake of you and that you is very specific and very limited. He did not come to die for the sake of the entire world. He did not come to die for the sake of every living person but this note that the universe 20 that he came in these last times for the sake of you. You very clearly speaks of believers in chapter 2 and verse four, first Peter two in verse four Peter Wrightson coming to him. I'm referring to Jesus Christ as to a living stone, and by the way, that is quite an an oxymoron, a a living stone, which is been rejected by men but his choice and precious in the side of God. Christ has come and has given himself for those who come to him. Verse four begins with a statement of saving faith as it also speaks of his saving death. Again the emphasis is upon Christ dying for those who come to him in the same chapter and verse 24, first Peter two in verse 24 we read he himself bore our sins in his body on the cross, who is the hour or the hour, refers to all who are believers in Christ to come to faith in Christ, who are called by the Holy Spirit to embrace the Lord Jesus Christ himself bore our sins in his body on the cross so that we might die to sin and live to righteousness. For by his wounds you were healed.
Please note these pronouns. Our we you speaking of all true believers in this passage. In this verse, Christ died for all those who died to sin.
Christ was raised to life for all those who live to righteousness. It's a very intricate tight interconnection here.
They Christ has come for those who are believers in him and who die to sin in chapters 3 and verse 18 we see the same argument again for Christ also died for sins once for all. And when he says all hear the all refers not to all people. It refers to all time.
In contrast with the priest in the Old Testament who had to make continual sacrifice because their sacrifice could not take away sin. But when Jesus the great high priest came heat.
He laid down his life once for all time, never to be repeated again.
It was the finished work of Jesus Christ upon the cross for Christ also died for sins once for all, the just for the unjust, so that he might bring us to God. The us very clearly speaks of elect believers so he died for the sins of all those whom he will bring to God, having been put to death in the flesh but made alive in the spirit.
I think what we see here is a very clear pattern of our Lord dying for us who believe. For you who believe for you who come to him by faith will not only do we see the doctrine of definite atonement in first Peter.
We also see irresistible grace and if you go back to the beginning of first Peter, I want to walk through this wonderful book with you yet one more time and I want you to note at the end of verse one in the beginning of verse two Peter rights to those who reside as aliens and then he says according to the foreknowledge of God the father, by the sanctifying work of the spirit, to obey Jesus Christ and be sprinkled with his blood. Here is a a Trinitarian statement foreknown by the father sprinkled with his blood by the sun and the sanctifying work of the spirit father son and Holy Spirit. Those who are foreknown by the father and those who are chosen by the father are those who are sprinkled with the blood of Christ and also these are those who are sanctified by the Holy Spirit. That means to be set apart by the holy spirit of God in and this sanctifying work begins the moment one is converted and it is at that moment that they begin to obey Jesus Christ. You see that this is the result of the work of the Holy Spirit. It is a powerful work look at the next verse, verse three, first Peter one verse three Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to his great mercy has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and this word to be born again means to be born anew. It means to be begotten again, and this says that it is God who caused this new birth why we can't birth ourselves into the kingdom. We can't cause this to happen, but it is God who sovereignly regenerates us, and he causes us to be born again. This theme continues, and later in this very same chapter and verse 15 first Peter one verse 15 we read, but like the holy one who called you, be holy yourselves also in all your behavior. We are called by the holy one. We are called to the holy one. We are called for the holy one, the one who calls us, calls us to him self. We read much the same again in chapter 2 in verse nine Peter is very strong on this sovereign effectual call of God that is extended to the elect that draws them to faith in Jesus Christ and first Peter two verse nine we read, but you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for God's own possession so that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who has called you those who are chosen at the beginning of verse nine are those who are called at the end of this verse, you are called out of darkness into his marvelous light on the site. Again, all who are chosen before the world began are those who are called within time and this word called the Greek word Colegio which means the call with a loud voice and the idea is that this call is so powerful and so allowed that it drowns out any other voice from any other false teacher or from the world and it overpowers us and apprehends us and brings us into a saving relationship with Jesus Christ. Later in this very same chapter in chapter 2, and in verse 21 we read the same for you have been called for this purpose.
Since Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example for you to follow in his steps. Again we see Peter speaking in the language of sovereign grace that all believers are called into fellowship with Jesus Christ are called into saving faith with Christ. This is a work that God must do or we would remain in darkness, or we would remain in unbelief.
In chapter 3 verse nine we read much the same again of this effectual sovereign overpowering call first Peter three and verse nine we read, not returning evil for evil, or insult for insult, but giving a blessing instead for you are called for the very purpose that you might inherit a blessing. The pronoun you refers to all believers refers to all those who have faith in Jesus Christ.
And the reason that they have faith in Jesus Christ is because they were called. No one believes in Jesus Christ until they are called at the appointed time in this call again lays hold of us and draws us into relationship with Jesus Christ. And if you believe that there's one more person want you to see on this sovereign calls first Peter five and verse 10 after you have suffered for a little while and wanted to stop here for a moment, this is addressed to believers in the first century who have been in essence run out of their town run out of their city run out of their homes and they have been scattered like aliens throughout Asia minor sink of what comfort they drew from this sovereign grace, that though they are rejected by the world. They have been chosen by God. Though they have been scattered abroad by the persecution of the world. They have nevertheless been summoned and subpoenaed by God into relationship with his son Jesus Christ. What streets. This gave them as they are in the midst of great tribulation. What what encouragement this was to their soul that the reason they even find themselves in this fiery ordeal of of suffering for the gospel is because it is the Lord himself who has apprehended them and brought them into this place in which they are now in conflict with the world in which they are hated by the world. They are in essence in the fiery trials of persecution by divine appointment. And what an encouragement that should be date one of us here today because many of us live in families and with extended family and with their unbelievers in which we receive flack for our faith and it is strength for our soul to be reminded that we find ourselves on the front lines of spiritual conflict because of Christ. As a result of the sovereign call of God out of the world, and out of darkness into faith in Jesus Christ. So look at this verse again. First Peter five verse 10. Matthew has suffered for a little while, the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will himself perfect, confirm, strengthen and establish you. This call here is more than a mere invitation. It is the elect being apprehended and drawn into faith with Jesus Christ and I find it interesting here in this verse, it he called you to his eternal glory in Christ Jesus, again reminding them that this world is not their home that you're just strangers and aliens here that this world is not your home.
You're just passing through. Your citizenship is in heaven, from which you will wait a Savior as long as you are in this world you shall have tribulation. All who are in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution and to remind them that they're just passing through.
In first Peter 510.
He says he called you to his eternal glory is beyond this world. Your eternal home is in glory and in heaven. So this is the irresistible call of God and others. One more doctrine of grace that I want us to note as I want zero back to the beginning of first Peter one more time with me one more time back to chapter 1 starting in verse three we read and I want us to consider now preserving grace, persevering grace first Peter one verse three, he has caused us to be born again into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead. Now he proceeds in verse four to obtain an inheritance which is imperishable that that means it can never be subject to death.
It can never be subject to destruction, and undefiled meaning. It is unstained and unpolluted and will not fade away, meaning it can never wither or die reserved in heaven for you, it could not be any more safely secure this inheritance, this treasure that is laid up for you in heaven.
Thieves cannot break in and take it.
Mas cannot corrupted it is safe in heaven waiting for you now notice what he goes on to say, and this is really good news not only is your inheritance saved for you, but he will go on to say you are safe for your inheritance. Not only is it secure in heaven awaiting you.
You are secure in Christ, and will surely one day be in heaven to receive this inheritance so he goes on to say after he says this inheritance is reserved in heaven for you. He writes who are protected by the power of God, who is a personal pronoun which speaks to all the elected speaks to all true believers a speaks to those who are born again in verse three we are protected by the power of God through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. So our inheritance is protected and we are protected.
It is inevitable that we will one day be in heaven in glory to receive this inheritance. Now, in the same chapter. Look at verses eight and nine, and though you have not seen him, you love him, and though you do not see him now, but believes in him, you greatly rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory, obtaining as the outcome of your faith, the salvation of your souls in this salvation is glorification as salvation comes in three installments. In reality, you can say you have been saved, you are being saved and you will be saved.
That is justification, sanctification, glorification you can say you have been saved from the penalty of sin, you are being saved from the practice of sin and one day you'll be safe in the presence of sin and it it's all interconnected, and that is the reference here is he is pointing to our future phases salvation are glorification you will with certainty obtain the outcome of your faith, the salvation of your souls only put it to you this way you are just as certain. For heaven this very moment as though you've Artie been there 10,000 years. It's so certain. Romans 830 says you've already been glorified and you haven't even arrived yet because it's so sure and certain the mind of God in the eternal purposes of God. Nothing can afford it are prevented from happening. Now there's one more verse I want you to note in first Peter in his first Peter five verse 10, which we looked at earlier, the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ Jesus, will himself perfect meaning bring to wholeness. Confirm meeting you will be held fast strengthen made sturdy and establish you. Meaning you will have laid a permanent foundation you are called to his eternal glory and we've already discussed this but it's as though this called his bypasses this world and the call goes all the way to the consummation to your eternal glory in heaven. If you been called to faith in Christ you have been likewise called to eternal glory. It's a it's a package deal so again we see the preserving grace of God, the eternal security of the believer, the perseverance of the saints. However you would like to label it.
Peter was so strong on the doctrines of grace to a hurting people who are so persecuted, who are so in the midst of fiery tribulation. What would encourage them. What would strengthen them. Peter continually emphasizes the sovereign grace of God in their salvation. And surely you and I can draw much strength from this in our lives today. As we live in a world that is growing darker and darker as we live in a culture and society. This becoming more ungodly and more un-Christlike and we are going to find ourselves more and more on the front line of spiritual warfare.
As we will be hated by the world. Let us remember how it was that we even came to be in this spiritual warfare were here by divine appointment for God's own purposes and is because we have been chosen out of the world to now suffer in the world for our faith in Jesus Christ. But what they did the Savior. They crucified him.
We cannot expect better treatment than what our Lord received while he was in this that gives us a great perspective in our trials those in it, were glad you're with us today here on Renewing Your Mind by bully webinar teacher is Dr. Steven Lawson the message we just heard is from his series, foundations of grace New Testament we realize that God has authored every aspect of our salvation including our perseverance. It gives us great hope and comfort them. He recommended you contact us and request Dr. Lawson's entire series walking through the New Testament with him but will help you see clearly how God's plan every aspect of our lives to request it with your donation of any amount to litigator ministries. Our phone number is 800-435-4343. You can also make a request to give your gift online and Renewing Your Mind.org.
By the way, Dr. Lawson is one of the teachers that you will hear regularly on our 24 hour Internet radio station rough that you also hear music and audiobooks to find a full email@example.com and you can listen for free at any time. Again the web address ref net.FM or download the free ref net app will continue our look to God's sovereignty and salvation tomorrow. And here's a preview Dr. Lawson's message is the root is sovereign election. The fruit will be a changed life. There is no way you could be living the way that you are living with a desire to know God and to love God and to pursue holiness except it is God who has dramatically intervened in your life. Please make plans to join us again Friday for Renewing Your Mind