"Our Living Inheritance"
“They don’t make things like they used to!” How often have we lamented along with others in this common theme. Even when things were made to last, they really didn’t. Who of us is driving the vehicle we bought when we were 20? Who of us sits in the same chair or sleeps in the same bed we had when we were nine. These days we exchange technology as soon as it is obsolete.
There really is only one eternal treasure: our place in heaven. Because of God’s grace and the vital efforts of our Redeemer Jesus, we certainly have this one eternal possession!
Verses 3-4 Praise to God
What qualities and works of God lead Peter to this encouragement for praise?
What does it mean that God is the Father of Jesus our Lord?
What act of Jesus accomplished the certainty of our living hope?
Have you ever inherited anything? When were you allowed to realize the ownership of that inheritance? How is that different from what Peter is saying about heaven?
Searching the Scriptures: 1 Corinthians 15: 12 - 21
What would be true about us if Jesus had not been raised from the dead?
What would be true about our ministry and purpose if Jesus had not been raised from the dead?
What truths does Jesus’ resurrection validate?
Verse 5 Faith as a Shield (end of verse 4)
What does it mean that our inheritance is kept in heaven for us (John 14: 1-4)?
According to this passage what is the driving force behind faith?
What things do you suppose God shields us from by giving us faith? Why is so that important?
Searching the Scriptures Further: Ephesians 6: 12 - 18
How is our faith strengthened?
What will result from our faith being fine tuned in this way?
Verse 6-7 Grace and Faith by Fire
Gold is purified by fire. How does that work? How does Peter’s illustration help us understand our trials in life?
Notice that Peter does not promise that our inheritance will bring us earthly happiness. However, what relationship does our treasure in heaven have with our sorrows in this life?
Searching the Scriptures Further: What perspective do these passages put on Peter’s words?
- Romans 8: 18
- 2 Corinthians 4: 16-18
- 2 Corinthians 12: 7 - 10
Verse 8-9 Salvation is Something we can Count On!
Remember what Jesus said to Thomas? “Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.” (John 20: 29). Remember what he taught the disciples about the faith of those they would reach (John 17: 17-20)?
Peter speaks about this same concept. If faith is faith it is not based on human reason or tangible things (even though you do not see him now you believe). Look up Hebrews 11: 1-2. What is the certainty of faith?
What does Peter mean by inexpressible joy?
Psalm 16: 8-11. Compare Peter’s words of comfort with David’s hope and certainty. How did David’s Old Testament faith shine? How did his trust in the resurrection shape his earthly life?
Search the Scriptures Further: Romans 8: 23-25
How does Paul describe HOPE?
Do you stand to inherit something from a loved one? Do you think of it as something that belongs to you right now? What is our Christian perspective on the inheritance which we do not yet have?
Agree/ Disagree. God tells me to be absolutely certain that I am going to heaven.
Agree/ Disagree. Most people are absolutely certain they are going to heaven.
What Does Luther Say?
“He who would preach the Gospel must go directly to preaching the resurrection of Christ. He who does not preach the resurrection is no apostle, for this is the chief part of our faith “... The greatest importance attaches to this article of faith. For were there no resurrection, we would have neither comfort nor hope, and everything Christ did and suffer would be in vain.”
“Know ye, then - sin, death, devil, and everything that assails me - that you are missing the mark. I am not one of those who are afraid of you. For Christ, my dear Lord, has presented to me the triumph and victory of His by which you were made low. And from this very gift of his I derive my name and am called Christian. There is no other reason. My sin and death hung about His neck on Good Friday, but on the day of Easter they had completely disappeared. This victory He has now bestowed on me. This is why I do not worry about you.”
Should every sermon on Sunday point out the importance of the resurrection?
Did Luther follow suit with Peter’s mode of preaching (Acts 2:32)? with Paul’s (Acts 17: 31)?
How might you use this section of Scripture, and Luther’s words, for personal devotion? Might this study prove helpful for someone who is troubled by doubt “... pain “... loss “... facing death “... overcome with hardship?
Luther actually personifies our spiritual enemies and speaks to them. What does he tell them?
What perspective does Easter place on Good Friday? In what way are each important?