Good News for Hard Times, Week 3


Pastor Jonathan Falwell

Key verse: I Peter 1:6 NLT So be truly glad. There is wonderful joy ahead, even though you must endure many trials for a little while.

Last week, we talked about following Christ’s example of living through the suffering with joy and victory in mind. There is no question Christ gave us the ultimate example of what it means to overcome. When we walk through life’s darkest moments with Christ as our guide, we will always reveal the truth and light found in Him.

Today, we will look at I Peter 2:11-3:12.

Reality #3: The world is watching

  • We are always under the microscope of the world as we navigate life
  • As a result, we all have a responsibility

Response #3: Maintain you testimony

  • In your neighborhood

1 Peter 2:11-12 NLT Dear friends, I warn you as “temporary residents and foreigners” to keep away from worldly desires that wage war against your very souls. 12 Be careful to live properly among your unbelieving neighbors. Then even if they accuse you of doing wrong, they will see your honorable behavior, and they will give honor to God when he judges the world.

  • In your community

I Peter 2:13-17 NLT For the Lord’s sake, submit to all human authority—whether the king as head of state, 14 or the officials he has appointed. For the king has sent them to punish those who do wrong and to honor those who do right. 15 It is God’s will that yourhonorable lives should silence those ignorant people who make foolish accusations against you. 16 For you are free, yet you are God’s slaves, so don’t use your freedom as an excuse to do evil. 17 Respect everyone, and love the family of believers. Fear God, and respect the king.

  • at your work

I Peter 2:18-20 NLT You who are slaves must submit to your masters with all respect. Do what they tell you—not only if they are kind and reasonable, but even if they are cruel. 19 For God is pleased when, conscious of his will, you patiently endure unjust treatment. Of course, you get no credit for being patient if you are beaten for doing wrong. But if you suffer for doing good and endure it patiently, God is pleased with you.

  • In your homes

Be encouraged: Christ has given us the plan1. Don’t give into sin

I Peter 2:21-22 NLT For God called you to do good, even if it means suffering, just as Christ suffered for you. He is your example, and you must follow in his steps. 22 He never sinned, nor ever deceived anyone.

  • God has called us all to holiness
  • Regardless of what trials we may face

2. Don’t seek revengeI Peter 2:23 NLT He did not retaliate when he was insulted, nor threaten revenge when he suffered. He left his case in the hands of God, who always judges fairly.

  • God has our entire lives in His grip
  • Let Him deal with the inequalities in life

3. Don’t forget He has made the wayI Peter 2:24-25 NLT He personally carried our sins in his body on the cross so that we can be dead to sin and live for what is right. By his wounds you are healed. 25 Once you were like sheep who wandered away. But now you have turned to your Shepherd, the Guardian of your souls.

  • Christ has given us everything we need to do things right

Be encouraged: We are not aloneI Peter 3:1-7 NLT In the same way, you wives must accept the authority of your husbands. Then, even if some refuse to obey the Good News, your godly lives will speak to them without any words. They will be won over 2 by observing your pure and reverent lives. 3 Don’t be concerned about the outward beauty of fancy hairstyles, expensive jewelry, or beautiful clothes. 4 You should clothe yourselves instead with the beauty that comes from within, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is so precious to God. 5 This is how the holy women of old made themselves beautiful. They put their trust in God and accepted the authority of their husbands. 6 For instance, Sarah obeyed her husband, Abraham, and called him her master. You are her daughters when you do what is right without fear of what your husbands might do. 7 In the same way, you husbands must give honor to your wives. Treat your wife with understanding as you live together. She may be weaker than you are, but she is your equal partner in God’s gift of new life. Treat her as you should so your prayers will not be hindered.

  • Our relationships determine the level of our righteousness
  • Stay focused on maintaining healthy relationships

James 5:16 NLT Confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The earnest prayer of a righteous person has great power and produces wonderful results.Now…listen to the opposite of this verse – let’s negate the entire statement and listen to how it sounds now:

The earnest prayer of a UNrighteous person DOES NOT HAVE great power and DOES

NOT produce wonderful results.

Clearly, we are given a directive in the power of prayer, but also in the process of

prayer. It is important our hearts are in the right place if we want to see God do what

only He can accomplish. It has been said, “The “righteous man” here referred to is the

man whose sins have been confessed and forgiven. His prayer is fully able to secure

results, such as healing of the sick.

Be encouraged: God promises joy if we remain faithful

I Peter 3:8-12 NLT Finally, all of you should be of one mind. Sympathize with each other. Love each other as brothers and sisters. Be tenderhearted, and keep a humble attitude.9 Don’t repay evil for evil. Don’t retaliate with insults when people insult you. Instead, pay them back with a blessing. That is what God has called you to do, and he will grant you his blessing. 10 For the Scriptures say, “If you want to enjoy life and see many happy days, keep your tongue from speaking evil and your lips from telling lies. 11 Turn away from evil and do good. Search for peace, and work to maintain it. 12 The eyes of the Lord watch over those who do right, and his ears are open to their prayers. But the Lord turns his face against those who do evil.”

  • Stand strong in your testimony
  • Keep your focus on doing God’s will
  • Remember God rewards faithful living