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                      "THE FIRST EPISTLE OF PETER"

                              Chapter Two

OBJECTIVES IN STUDYING THIS CHAPTER

1) To note what is necessary in order to grow spiritually

2) To reflect upon our privilege and duties as God's special people,
   living as sojourners and pilgrims in a world not our home

3) To review our duty to submit to governmental authorities, and to make
   application of the instructions to slaves in our lives as employees

SUMMARY

Having described how they were born again by the incorruptible Word of
God, Peter admonishes his readers to put aside sinful attitudes and to
grow spiritually with an infant-like longing for the Word (1-3).

He then depicts Jesus as a living stone, and Christians as living
stones.  The latter are being built up as a spiritual house and holy
priesthood in order to offer spiritual sacrifices through Christ.  As
foretold in the Scriptures, Jesus is the chief cornerstone that is
precious to those who believe, while a stone of stumbling to those who
are disobedient.  Christians are called on to proclaim the praises of
God as they are now a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy
nation, His own special people who have now obtained mercy (4-10).

As the people of God, Christians are sojourners and pilgrims in this
world.  Their duties as such involve abstaining from fleshly lusts, and
keeping their conduct honorable among the Gentiles (nations) through
good works designed to glorify God.  They are to honor and submit to
governmental authorities, and honor all people while loving the brethren
and fearing God (11-17).

Christian slaves are told to submit to their masters, even when they are
harsh and cause them to suffer grief wrongly.  Peter reveals that such
submission is commendable before God and follows the example of Jesus
whose own suffering delivered us from sin (18-25).

OUTLINE

I. A CALL TO SPIRITUAL GROWTH (1-3)

   A. WHAT TO LAY ASIDE (1)
      1. All malice, all deceit
      2. Hypocrisy, envy, and all evil speaking

   B. WHAT TO DESIRE (2-3)
      1. The pure milk of the word
         a. As newborn babes
         b. That you may grow thereby
      2. If indeed you have tasted that the Lord is gracious

II. OUR PRIVILEGE IN CHRIST (4-10)

   A. AS LIVING STONES (4-8)
      1. Coming to Christ as to a living stone
         a. Who was rejected by men
         b. Who is chosen by God and precious
      2. We as living stones are being built up as a spiritual house
         a. To be a holy priesthood
         b. To offer spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through
            Jesus Christ
      3. Christ is the precious cornerstone
         a. As foretold in Isaiah 28:16
            1) God would lay in Zion a chief cornerstone, elect,
               precious
            2) He who believes on Him will by no means be put to shame
            3) Precious to those who believe
         b. As foretold in Psalms 118:22 and Isaiah 8:14
            1) A stone rejected by the builders, which has become the
               chief cornerstone
            2) A stone of stumbling and rock of offense to those who are
               disobedient
            3) To which they were appointed

   B. AS PEOPLE OF GOD (9-10)
      1. They are now:
         a. A chosen generation
         b. A royal priesthood
         c. A holy nation
         d. His own special people
      2. They are now:
         a. To proclaim the praises of God, who called them:
            1) Out of darkness
            2) Into His marvelous light
         b. The people of God, who once were not the people of God
            1) Who had not obtained mercy
            2) But now have obtained mercy

III. OUR DUTIES IN CHRIST (11-25)

   A. AS SOJOURNERS (11-12)
      1. To abstain from fleshly lusts which war against the soul
      2. To have conduct honorable among the Gentiles
         a. That when they speak against you as evildoers
         b. They may glorify God in the day of visitation
         c. Because of your good works they observe

   B. AS CITIZENS (13-17)
      1. Submit yourselves to every ordinance of man for the Lord's sake
         a. To the king as supreme
         b. To governors as those sent by the king
            1) For the punishment of evildoers
            2) For the praise of those who do good
      2. For this is the will of God, as bondservants of God
         a. That by doing good you may put to silence the ignorance of
            foolish men
         b. As free, yet not using liberty as a cloak for vice
      3. Therefore:
         a. Honor all
         b. Love the brotherhood
         c. Fear God
         d. Honor the king

   C. AS SERVANTS (18-25)
      1. Submissive to your masters with all fear
         a. Not only to the good and gentle
         b. But also to the harsh
      2. For this is commendable before God
         a. If because of conscience before God one endures grief,
            suffering wrongfully
         b. What credit is there when beaten for your faults, you take
            it patiently?
         c. If when you do good and suffer, yet take it patiently, that
            is commendable
      3. For we were called to Follow in the steps of Jesus our example
         a. Who committed no sin, nor was deceit found in His mouth
            (Isaiah 53:9)
            1) When He was reviled, did not revile in return
            2) When He suffered, He did not threaten
            3) He committed Himself to Him who judges righteously
         b. Who bore our sins in His own body on the tree
            1) That we, having died to sins, might live for
               righteousness
            2) By whose stripes you were healed
            3) You were like sheep going astray, but have now returned
               to the Shepherd and Overseer of your souls

REVIEW QUESTIONS FOR THE CHAPTER

1) What are the main points of this chapter?
   - A call to spiritual growth (1-3)
   - Our privilege in Christ (4-10)
   - Our duties in Christ (11-25)

2) What must we lay aside to grow spiritually? (1)
   - All malice, all deceit, hypocrisy, envy, and all evil speaking

3) How should we long for the Word if we want to grow spiritually? (2)
   - As newborn babes desire milk

4) What should motivate us to desire the Word with such longing? (3)
   - If we have already tasted that the Lord is gracious

5) What kind of stone is used to describe Jesus? (4)
   - A living stone
   - Rejected by men, but chosen by God and precious

6) What two metaphors are used to describe Christians? (5)
   - Living stones, being built up as a spiritual house
   - A holy priesthood, offering up spiritual sacrifices to God through
     Christ

7) What prophecy foretells the laying of a chief cornerstone in Zion?
   (6)
   - Isaiah 28:16

8) What is Jesus to those who believe in Him?  To those who do not
   believe? (6-8)
   - The chief cornerstone, elect, precious
   - A stone of stumbling, a rock of offense

9) What is the appointed end of those who do not believe and are
   disobedient? (8)
   - They stumble

10) How are Christians described by Peter? What is their duty? Why?
    (9-10)
   - A chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own
     special people
   - To proclaim the praises of Him who called them out of darkness into
     His marvelous light
   - They are now the people of God who have obtained mercy

11) What is our duty as sojourners and pilgrims in this world? Why?
    (11-12)
   - Abstain from fleshly lusts which war against the soul
   - Conduct ourselves honorably among the Gentiles
   - That they might glorify God in the day of visitation because of our
     good works

12) What is our duty toward the governments of men?  Why? (13-15)
   - Submit to every ordinance of man for the Lord's sake
   - That by doing good we might silence the ignorance of foolish men

13) How are we use our freedom in Christ? (16)
   - Not as a cloak for vice, but as bondservants of God

14) What four admonitions summarize our duties to others? (17)
   - Honor all people, love the brotherhood, fear God, honor the king

15) What is the duty of servants to their masters? (18)
   - Be submissive with all fear, not only to the good and gentle, but
     also to the harsh

16) What is commendable before God? (19-20)
   - To endure grief, suffering wrongfully though doing good, because of
     conscience toward God

17) To what have we been called? (21)
   - To follow in the steps of Christ, who suffered for us and left us
     an example

18) How did Jesus suffer wrongly and bear it patiently? (22-23)
   - He committed no sin nor was deceit found in his mouth
   - When reviled, He did not revile in return; when He suffered, He did
     not threaten
   - He committed Himself to God who judges righteously

20) What good did Jesus accomplish by suffering such abuse? (24-25)
   - He bore our sins in His own body on the tree
   - Making it possible for us to die to sin and live for righteousness
     (by His strips we were healed)
   - Like sheep gone astray, we have now returned to the Shepherd and
     Overseer of our souls
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