Lesson 1: ‘A Living Hope’
‘Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, To God’s elect, exiles scattered throughout the provinces of Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia and Bithynia, who have been chosen according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through the sanctifying work of the Spirit, to be obedient to Jesus Christ and sprinkled with his blood: Grace and peace be yours in abundance. Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy, he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade. This inheritance is kept in heaven for you, who through faith are shielded by God’s power until the coming of the salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last time. In all this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. These have come so that the proven genuineness of your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed. Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy, for you are receiving the end result of your faith, the salvation of your souls. Concerning this salvation, the prophets, who spoke of the grace that was to come to you, searched intently and with the greatest care, trying to find out the time and circumstances to which the Spirit of Christ in them was pointing when he predicted the sufferings of the Messiah and the glories that would follow. It was revealed to them that they were not serving themselves but you, when they spoke of the things that have now been told you by those who have preached the gospel to you by the Holy Spirit sent from heaven. Even angels long to look into these things.’ 1 Peter 1:1-12
What is it like to be away from home and in trouble?
A Chosen People
1. What do the words ‘to God’s elect’ mean?
‘Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ. For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love, he predestined us for adoption to sonship through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will—to the praise of his glorious grace, which he has freely given us in the One he loves. In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace’ Ephesians 1:3-8
‘But we ought always to thank God for you, brothers and sisters loved by the Lord, because God chose you as firstfruits to be saved through the sanctifying work of the Spirit and through belief in the truth. He called you to this through our gospel, that you might share in the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ.’ 2 Thessalonians 2:13-14
2. What is the work of each individual member of the Godhead in salvation?
3. How would Peter’s opening words bring comfort and encouragement to persecuted Christians?
An Imperishable Inheritance
1. What does Peter mean by ‘a living hope’? What is the basis for this hope?
2. How is the Christian’s inheritance described in 1 Peter 1:4?
3. How important is our faith in receiving this inheritance?
‘For everyone born of God overcomes the world. This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith.’ 1 John 5:4
4. These Christians were suffering persecution for their faith. What was to be their attitude toward these trials?
5. What part does faith play in ‘seeing’ Christ?
‘For we live by faith, not by sight.’ 2 Corinthians 5:7
6. What is the Christian’s ultimate goal?
A Diligent Search
1. For what were the prophets searching as they made their prophecies?
2. Who was the fulfilment of these prophecies designed to benefit?
3. What do 1 Peter 1:10-12 teach concerning the inspiration of the Scriptures?
How grateful are you for the living hope you have in Christ?
To Download This Study In Its Entirety To Your PC, Please Click On The Icon Below