Elect Exiles

By Joe Boot / September 7, 2014

Series 1 Peter: Standing Firm in our Hope

Context Westminster Chapel Toronto

Topic Discipleship

Scripture 1 Peter 1:1-25

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Scripture: 1 Peter 1:1-25

Sermon Notes:

  1. The letter of 1 Peter is attributed to Peter by early church fathers and it is referred to in 2 Peter 3:1.
  2. Peter wrote his letter to encourage the church during a time of persecution and harassment.
  3. Peter’s letter is eschatological, encouraging the church by reminding us of what God is doing in history.
  4. Peter begins with a blessing, goes on to remind us of our salvation in Christ, and concludes by expounding the implications of our salvation for the Christian life.
  5. Peter assures the persecuted church that in Christ they will be strengthened, blessed, and ultimately vindicated.
  6. Peter writes as an eye witness of Christ, and he marvels at the faith of those who never saw Jesus and yet persevere.
  7. Babylon refers to Rome, the symbolic empire of rebellion.
  8. Peter, a Jewish apostle, is concerned to connect Christ’s Church to its roots in the Old Testament.
  9. Whether we are blessed or persecuted, we’re to be witnesses to the grace of the gospel.
  10. Because we are heirs of all God’s promises in the gospel, we endure injustice with patience entrusting ourselves to God.
  11. Since we are chosen by God from all eternity, nothing can rob us of the joy of our citizenship in the Lord.
  12. God is always faithful in His electing promises, despite appearances to the contrary (cf. Rom. 11:1-5).
  13. We are elect exiles chosen by the Father, sanctified by the Spirit for obedience to Christ.
  14. God is now gathering a new people from among Jews and Gentiles throughout the world, for obedience to Christ.
  15. Purchased by Christ’s blood, God’s people are empowered for obedience in the new covenant (Heb. 8, Jer. 31).
  16. Jesus is the greater Joshua who brings us into our inheritance.
  17. The world outside of Christ is a rebel kingdom.  In it we are strangers and aliens.
  18. As God’s new humanity in Christ, we are to stand out for our obedience as we live within the world.  We’re to obey Christ until the day of His appearing.
  19. Christ has overcome the world and in Him we have victory.
  20. Christ is coming in judgment upon all rebellion, but there is still time for repentance. 
  21. As Christ’s ambassadors we are to bring salvation to the rebel world.
  22. We are to immanentize the eschaton, i.e., we are to make the future eschatological hope visible now through our lives.
  23. The end of the story is that the Lord will judge by fire and restore all things. 
  24. In the meantime we have a role to play, to bring about the restoration of God’s world by our words and actions.

Application Questions

  1. Outline the context in which Peter is writing. 
  2. How does instruction in God’s eschatological purposes serve to encourage the suffering people of God?
  3. What does it mean to immanentize the eschaton?
  4. What is our role in the great end toward which God is working, i.e., the destruction of evil and the restoration of all things?
  5. Are we part of God’s eschatological purpose, or will we be judged by God as rebels?

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