Archive for the 'Easter' Category

Posts from 1 Peter: Resisting and Restoration

Posts from 1 Peter: Resisting and Restoration Sermon Audio Here

1 Peter 4:12-14; 5:6-11

We can’t resist something if we can’t recognize it as something worth standing against. Hardship isn’t often welcomed, but it does have the power to CHANGE who we are.

What Do We Hold During Hardship?

The Questions Of Suffering ~ 1 Peter 4:12-14

  • v12 Suffering is NOT strange; it’s status quo (like it or not); what are you learning through it?
  • v13 How does your suffering intersect with Christ’s?
  • v14 when it does, YOU ARE BLESSED (beatitude); Spirit rests on you like glory shining from Moses’ face: he was in God’s presence and it changed him. THAT is what happens when you suffer in Christ; He is present in your suffering
  • How is it changing you?

The Answers To Suffering ~ 1 Peter 5:6-11

  • v6 we jump to verse 6 because Peter addresses all of us here: Answer: that you are not God
  • v7 cast anxieties: not throw away, but lay them down where they can be carried (coats on the donkey’s back for Jesus): Answer: you aren’t supposed to carry your cares
  • v8 “enemy” from opponent in a lawsuit; the devil will say terrible things about you, and try to get you to believe them: Answer: DON’T Listen to the Devil; HE LIES!
  • v9 resist=stand against, not just talk; standing firm WHERE YOU ARE (we don’t need to wait for a specific circumstance or situation; Answer: we can stand and resist right here)
  • v10 restore=complete His work, set you in place, make your foundation secure and strengthen you through HIS work
  • Answer: cooperate with God’s work IN PROGRESS
  • v11 We say this as a doxology at the end of the Lord’s prayer.

Psalms 68:34-35~ Proclaim the power of God, whose majesty is over Israel, whose power is in the skies. You are awesome, O God, in your sanctuary; the God of Israel gives power and strength to his people. Praise be to God!

It means God started it, God will finish it!

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Posts from 1 Peter: Reasons for Hope

Posts from 1 Peter: Reasons for Hope Sermon Audio Here

1 Peter 3:13-22

If you’ve ever felt overwhelmed, unsure, or at the end of your rope, remember your hope!

Remember Your Reasons To Hope:

1st: YOU ARE NOT ALONE WHEN YOU SUFFER

  • v13/14 you ARE blessed, not you would be; from the Beatitudes: God notices you in your suffering;

2nd: YOUR HOPE IS REASONABLE

  • v15 set apart/sanctify=for a holy and specific use (Good china)
  • (our hope is based in something real; not ridiculous or random)

3rd: YOUR HOPE DOESN’T NEED POWER

  • v16 meekness, respect, confidence
  • you do not need to be in a position of power to exercise hope

4th: GOD VALUES YOUR LIFE

  • v17 the good we do is worth any suffering that the Lord allows

5th: JESUS ALREADY PAID FOR YOUR SIN

  • v18 YOU don”t have to carry it

6th: STUCK? JESUS CAN FREE YOU

  • v19 if Jesus can free souls stuck in DEATH, He can certainly free you

7th: GOD PREPARES WAYS TO RESCUE HIS PEOPLE

  • v20 he did with Noah, and he did with Jesus

8th: GOD RESCUES FROM BEING OVERWHELMED

  • v21 get in the Ark!

9th: JESUS IN THE PERFECT POSITION TO SAVE: AT THE TOP

  • v22 He is above Angels, Authorities, Powers, and Problems!

Posts from 1 Peter: Placed for Praise

Posts from 1 Peter: Placed for Praise Sermon Audio Here

1 Peter 2:2-10

Praise seems pretty important to God. Even Jesus said that if people didn’t praise God, even the stones would cry out.

Why Should We Care About Praise?

You Have A Reason To Be ~ 1 Peter 2:2-6

  • v2 There’s a word not explicitly translated in the NIV: “OF THE WORD”; Peter isn’t calling us babies; he’s saying that in the way a baby craves milk, we need to crave the unadulterated Word of God; simple and pure; as babies grow when they drink milk, Christians grow when they take in the Word
  • v3 when we recognize God’s goodness, graciousness, THEN we can accept His word; if a person only ever sees a distorted picture of the Lord, they won’t want God in their lives – why would they?
  • v4 “as you are coming” (emphasizes participation)
  • v5 “you are being built… to be” as you show up, God notices and uses you; PRIESTHOOD – the group of people who represent God to humanity, and humanity to God
  • v6 As we are connected to Christ, and He is the Cornerstone, God builds His Temple on THAT foundation. The purpose of a temple: to meet God and interact with Him there. Our praise, our worship, our lives are a part of how the world understands who Jesus is.
=> Bad news: we can get in the way, and become the distorted picture of Christ that people reject. Good news: we’re the example that God will save ANYBODY!

God Has A Role For You ~ 1 Peter 2:7-10

  • v7 the world rejects Jesus because He is the standard… and they want THEMSELVES to be the standard; they have to admit they’re out of alignment, and that’s tough to do
  • v8 when they can’t accept the Word, they stumble; when they stumble, they fall – that’s how it works
  • v9 BUT YOU (hallelujah!) have been chosen to PRAISE

CLOSE: v10 “once upon a time” – you can tell the story, the old old story of Jesus and His love that saves (present tense) you!

Posts from 1 Peter: Endurance is Trust

Posts from 1 Peter: Endurance is Trust Sermon Audio Here

1 Peter 2:19-25

Too many “prosperity preachers” talk about what makes the “best life now”. But let’s face the truth: Everyone Suffers SOMETIME. The question is: What do we DO with suffering? How CAN We USE It?

How Can We Respond To Tough Times?

We Endure Through Trusting ~ 1 Peter 2:19-22 It’s not about getting through adversity

  • v19 commendable: org. word is GRACE; suffering not automatically a blessing, but it can be a tool which makes us aware of God’s grace to us
  • v20 don’t focus on the suffering; focus on doing good also a tool for seeing GRACE
  • v21 “an example” a writing copy to imitate, like a PRIMER for kids, to follow step by step
  • v22 HE missed no steps; we can walk as He walked (map through a minefield)
=> scene from football movie: player carries another player on his back blindfolded. Coach convinces the carrier to concentrate on his voice, not his own pain. End result: end zone!

We Trust in Christ’s Endurance ~ 1 Peter 2:23-25 It’s all about HIS work

  • v23 entrusted=committed himself again and again and again; an act of will/choice
  • v24 “might die to sins” KJV “being dead to sin”; the word means that Christ died, and dragged sin’s effects away; it’s NULLIFIED, and only has the power we give it. MEANING: when we remember our SIN IS DEAD ON THE CROSS, it can’t hold onto our life
  • v25 “returned” THIS is the 180 degree turn of “repent”; Jesus is our Watcher Above, our Shepherd

Psalm 23:4 Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.

When we stop trusting, we wander. When we wander, we waste life. When we return to trust, we recognize again our life in Grace.

Posts from 1 Peter: Faith is Precious

Posts from 1 Peter: Faith is Precious Sermon Audio Here

1 Peter 1:17-23

We’ve been looking at different aspects of our new life in Christ. We’re risen WITH Christ; we live with hope; we’ve been GIVEN faith.

Appreciate Your Precious Faith By

Reminding Yourself of the Truth ~ 1 Peter 1:17-19

  • v17 KJV “pass the time of your sojourning” REMEMBER: we are on a JOURNEY; what do you differently when you’re traveling versus when you’re at home?
  • v18 “you were redeemed” REMEMBER: YOU are BOUGHT and PAID FOR; how often do you remind yourself that you have VALUE?
  • v19 notice the sacrificial language from Leviticus; REMEMBER: Christ is the only acceptable offering; Are you trying to sacrifice yourself?

Remaining in Him with Faith ~ 1 Peter 1:20-21

  • v20 Christ’s sacrifice was God’s plan ALL ALONG; our sin doesn’t catch God off guard
  • v21 Our faith is both a gift from and BASED IN God; our faith isn’t something we “work up”; when we are faithless, it’s because we’re not using what we already have

Regarding Each Other’s Worth ~ 1 Peter 1:22-23

  • v22 “purified yourselves by obeying” – in the same way that the Old Testament saints participated in the sacrificial system; THEY didn’t purify themselves, God did through the actions of the priestly system (and only temporary). We don’t make ourselves better; Jesus has done the work, and we just admit we need it
  • v23 “through the living word” NOT only and primarily the Bible; this is the LOGOS, John 1:1. JESUS is the Living Word! JESUS will remain forever! And because we are connected to Christ because of our gifted faith, we ALSO are Living and Abiding forever with God.

Psalm 116:16 O LORD, truly I am your servant; I am your servant, the son of your maidservant; you have freed me from my chains.

He gave us faith to set us free: USE IT !

Posts from 1 Peter: Hope is Alive

Posts from 1 Peter: Hope is Alive Sermon Audio Here

1 Peter 1:3-9

Last week, we talked about the fact that if Jesus is Risen, we’re risen, too! But what does that MEAN? What makes that WORK? Hope, for one thing…

Hope is Alive Because…

Jesus is Alive! ~ 1 Peter 1:3-5

  • v3 When we’re connected to Christ, we are Reborn; hope is the result
  • v4 our hope isn’t on things that decay; the reason for our hope is timeless
  • v5 WE are shielded from decay; we’ll still experience the effects of entropy while we’re stuck here, but WE, our SELVES, have been connected to the Resurrected One – and we TOO are resurrected in hope!

=> my hope is built on nothing less than Jesus’ blood and righteousness!

Suffering is Temporary ~ 1 Peter 1:6-7

  • v6 in this: the shielding, even through current suffering; we recognize that all our earthly life is just a temporary situation
  • v7 WHEN you come through tough times (and notice I say WHEN and not if), you’ll be able to look back and give God glory for how the Lord sustained you… because you’ll see how you were changed to be like Christ

=> in Army, I heard guys whining about how tough the obstacle course was, and all I could think was how it was just for a short time. I figured I could probably experience the worst that Hell had to offer… as long as I knew it was temporary, and that I could have pizza afterwards…

Joy is Real ~ 1 Peter 1:8-9

Are we there yet? ALMOST!

Raised With Christ!

Raised With Christ! Sermon Audio Here

Colossians 3:1-4

If you join a sports team, you are expected at practice. If you join the cast of a show, you are expected at rehearsal. What is expected of you if you join with Christ?

Every Who Loves God Faces Four Challenges:

1] Set Your HEART
v1 “since then” refers to those who fulfill condition in Col. 2:12:
2:12: [You were] buried with Him in baptism and raised with Him through your faith in the power of God, who raised Him from the dead.

3:1: Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God.
What do you LONG for?

2] Set Your MIND
v2 Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things.
What do you DWELL on?

    We all know the importance of correct settings: a mechanic uses Top Dead Center; a navigator uses North on a map. Our spiritual lives have settings, too; and when we try to set them according to our own whims instead of God’s standards, is it any wonder that we, too, get lost?

3] Let Your LIFE HIDE
v3 For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God.
What do you CRAVE that you need to let go?

4] Let Your LORD BE SEEN
v4 When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.
Whose glory have you been seeking?

    We talked about settings, but what about LETTINGS? We have to admit that at times, we have to allow OTHERS to do for us: we don’t perform our own surgery. It’s good to let our SELF stop pretending it’s in control.

Jeremiah 31:3~ The LORD appeared to us in the past, saying: “I have loved you with an everlasting love; I have drawn you with loving-kindness.”

The Lord fulfills that promise IN YOU; God loves you, and the Lord is drawing you even today.


Pastor Ed Backell

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