Morning Bible Study
Video: September 2019 Mexico Trip
From Rome, the apostle Peter writes this letter to the Jew and Gentile
believers that are living throughout the province known as Asia Minor, or,
It is AD 64. Caesar Nero is
beginning to unleash his persecution of Christians back in Rome, where Peter
The believers in Rome faced torture, being burned alive, and death by
animals in the Coliseum.
The main themes that we will see woven through this tapestry of difficulty
Submission – an unusual response to suffering, learning to “yield” to God
rather than “fight” the problem.
Relational Evangelism – the way we go through our difficulties and yet
still cling to God can be a light to those who are going through dark times of
Three weeks ago Daniel Grant introduced us to that
ugly theme of “submission”.
Today we take “submission” to work and school…
When it comes to work and school, sometimes we can relate to that great
Accept that some days you are the pigeon and some days the statue.
Do not meddle in the affairs of dragons, because you are crunchy and taste
good with ketchup.
Never argue with an idiot. They drag you down to their level then beat you
So what does Peter have to say to the church when
confronted with idiots and dragons?
Does he tell the church to buy swords, organize an army, and fight back?
2:18-25 Submission to Masters
:18 Servants, be
submissive to your masters with all fear, not only to the good and
gentle, but also to the harsh.
:18 Servants, be submissive to your masters
servants – οἰκέτης oiketes – one
who lives in the same house as another, spoken of all who are under the
authority of one and the same householder
Though this word is used practically the same as δοῦλος (slave), this has an emphasis on
being in the same household as the master.
Don’t make too much of
Peter using oiketes as opposed to doulos, Paul uses doulos
in Col. 3:22-25 and Eph. 6:5-7.
Some of you may wonder
why I’m suggesting we apply these verses at work and school when Peter is
talking to “slaves”.
I have a video of
ancient slaves that proves that it was just like your workplace, or perhaps
masters – δεσπότης despotes – a master, Lord.
We get the English word “despot” from this word.
The dictionary defines “despot” as “a ruler who holds absolute power,
typically in a cruel or oppressive way”
Does it sound like your “boss”?
submissive – ὑποτάσσω hupotasso – to arrange under; to submit to one’s
control, admonition or advice; to obey.
It was a Greek military term that described the arrangement of troops under
the command of a leader.
present passive participle
It seems the participle is being used as an imperative.
fear – phobos – fear, dread, terror
The fact that Peter is
even addressing “servants” is quite unusual.
Slaves in the Roman Empire
didn’t have rights as people. They were
Isn’t it a bit odd that Peter is telling servants to “submit” when that’s
what have to do by law?
He’s showing that healthy submission is a choice.
Submission doesn’t have to be something forced on you,
it can be a choice you make.
Submission is something every follower of Jesus needs to learn.
16:24 NKJV) Then Jesus said to His disciples, “If anyone
desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and
Denying yourself is at the heart of submission.
:18 not only to the good … but also the harsh
good – ἀγαθός agathos – of good constitution or nature; good, pleasant, agreeable,
joyful, happy; excellent, distinguished; upright, honorable
gentle – ἐπιεικής epieikes – seeming, suitable; equitable, fair,
harsh – σκολιός skolios – crooked, curved; perverse, wicked; unfair
Submission isn’t earned
Some of us have the idea that we’ll “submit”, as long as
we agree with the boss or teacher, or as long as he’s nice to us.
Peter would disagree with you.
Peter is telling us to learn to submit even to the boss or teacher that’s unfair.
A secretary, a paralegal, and a partner in a big law firm are walking
through a park on their way to lunch when they find an antique oil lamp. They
rub it and a Genie comes out in a puff of smoke. The Genie says, “I usually
only grant three wishes, so I’ll give each of you just one.” “Me first! Me first!” says the secretary. “I want to be in
the Bahamas, driving a speedboat, without a care in the world.” Poof! She’s
gone. “Me next! Me next!” says the paralegal. “I want to be in Hawaii, relaxing
on the beach with my personal masseuse, an endless supply of exotic foods, and
the love of my life.” Poof! He’s gone. “You’re next,” the Genie says to the
partner. The partner says, “I want those two back in the office right after
It’s when we learn to submit under difficult circumstances that the real impact
of submission comes out.
People all around us will see that we are different when submit in
difficult circumstances, not when it’s easy.
This is when people will ask us why we are different? This is when the door for the gospel opens.
Peter has already told us that if we live a life that is honorable, even
when we’re suffering, that unbelievers all around us will stand up and pay
attention (1Pet. 2:12)
(1 Peter 2:12 NKJV) having your conduct honorable among
the Gentiles, that when they speak against you as evildoers, they may, by your
good works which they observe, glorify God in the day of visitation.
Learning submission to people is a step towards learning submission to God.
There are going to be times in your life when God may want to ask you to do
something that is uncomfortable or unpleasant to you. Are you going to pick and choose which things
you’re going to obey when God commands you? We need to learn to do uncomfortable things
when those in authority over us ask us.
Is there ever a time when we don’t “submit”?
The one general rule is when the person in authority is pushing you to
Peter himself disobeyed men in authority over him.
He and John had been arrested by the Jewish leaders for
preaching about Jesus (Acts 4). They
were beaten, told to never do it again, and released.
Yet they went right back and started preaching about
When they were arrested a second time, Peter explained why
he disobeyed their orders:
(Acts 5:29 NKJV) But Peter and the other
apostles answered and said: “We ought to obey God rather than men.
If your boss or teacher is asking you to do something
against God’s laws (i.e. lie, steal, hurt others), then you should disobey.
This is not always black and white.
Was it okay for the Christians in Holland to disobey the
Nazis and hide the Jews?
That one is pretty clear. Since
when does God condone the murder of innocent people?
Was it okay for the American colonies to rebel against the
English king and refuse to pay their taxes?
That one is not too clear.
You could make a point that they were stepping all over Peter’s
exhortations to pay taxes and submit to governing authorities.
But otherwise, we should submit.
:19 For this is
commendable, if because of conscience toward God one endures grief, suffering
Note: In vs. 19&20, the word “commendable” is χάρις, “grace”
:19 commendable … suffering wrongfully
commendable – χάρις charis – grace; that which affords joy, pleasure, delight, sweetness,
(NAS) For this finds
It’s a good thing when we submit the way God wants us to.
conscience – suneidesis – the consciousness of anything; the
soul as distinguishing between what is morally good and bad, prompting to do
the former and shun the latter, commending one, condemning the other; the
endures – hupophero – to bear by being under, bear up (a
thing placed on one’s shoulders); to bear patiently, to endure
present active indicative
grief – lupe – sorrow, pain, grief, annoyance,
suffering – pascho – to be affected or have been affected,
to feel, have a sensible experience, to undergo; in a bad sense, to suffer
sadly, be in a bad plight
present active participle
wrongfully – adikos – unjustly, undeserved, without fault
(1 Pet 2:19 NLT) For God is
pleased with you when, for the sake of your conscience, you patiently endure
I’m not saying that when you work for a bad boss or a bad company that
there isn’t a time when you need to think about moving on.
Just don’t be too quick to leave.
Don’t miss out on the “grace” (the word “commendable”), the blessing that
comes from enduring hardship.
:20 For what credit is
it if, when you are beaten for your faults, you take it patiently? But when
you do good and suffer, if you take it patiently, this is commendable
:20 when you do good and suffer
credit – kleos – rumor, report; glory, praise
faults – hamartano – sin.
to be without a share in; to miss the mark; to err, be mistaken; to miss
or wander from the path of uprightness and honour, to
do or go wrong; to wander from the law of God, violate God’s law, sin
present active participle
you are beaten – kolaphizo – to
strike with the fist, give one a blow with the fist; to maltreat, treat with
violence and contumely
present passive participle
take it patiently – hupomeno – to
remain; to tarry behind; to remain i.e. abide, not recede or flee; to preserve: under misfortunes and trials to hold fast to one’s
faith in Christ; to endure, bear bravely and calmly: ill treatments
future active indicative (both times)
you do good – agathopoieo – to do good, do something which
profits others; to be a good help to someone; to do someone a favor; to
benefit; to do well, do right
suffer – pascho – to be affected or have been affected,
to feel, have a sensible experience, to undergo; in a bad sense, to suffer
sadly, be in a bad plight
commendable – charis – grace; that which affords joy,
pleasure, delight, sweetness, charm, loveliness: grace of speech; good will,
This is the same word translated “commendable” in verse 19.
Enduring difficult people
If you break the rules or do a bad job at work or school, and you are
written up, you don’t get any brownie points from God.
You deserve what you get.
But if you are doing everything right at work or school, you get yelled at,
and you “take it patiently”, then you find favor (“grace”) with God. It is
It’s because you are beginning to look a lot like Jesus.
Missionary to India Amy Carmichael in expressing her desire to become like
the Lord Jesus said this:
“If in dealing with one who does not respond, I weary of the strain, and
slip from under the burden, then I know nothing of Calvary Love.
If I have not the patience of my Savior with souls who grow slowly; if I
know little of travail till Christ be fully formed in them, then I know nothing
of Calvary Love.
If I avoid being ‘ploughed under’ with all that such ploughing entails of
rough handling, isolation, uncongenial situations, strange test, then I know
nothing of Calvary Love.”
:21 For to this you were
called, because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that you
should follow His steps:
you were called – kaleo – to call;
to call aloud, utter in a loud voice; to invite
aorist passive indicative
:21 because Christ also suffered for us
Peter is going to remind us of the example that Jesus has left for us.
You may struggle with where we are going with this today because you know
what a jerk your boss is.
What did Jesus say to the people crucifying Him as He hung on the cross?
(Luke 23:34 NKJV) Then Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what
they do.” And they
divided His garments and cast lots.
suffered – pascho – to suffer sadly, be in a bad plight
aorist active indicative
:21 an example, that you should follow His steps:
leaving – hupolimpano – to leave, leave behind
present active participle
example – ὑπογραμμός hupogrammos (“under” + “writing”) – an example of
writing given to beginners as an aid in learning to draw them
This is like your first grader’s writing homework. The teacher hands out a page with letters at
the top of the page and your child learns to write the letters by copying what’s
written at the top.
follow – epakoloutheo – to follow (close) upon; to tread in
aorist active subjunctive
Subjunctive is the mood of “possibility”.
Jesus didn’t leave us an example so that we definitely WILL follow His steps.
It’s up to us. It’s
possible, but it’s our choice to make.
steps – ichnos – a footprint, track, footstep; in the
NT, metaph. of imitating the example of any one
Follow the Leader
We usually think of “Follow the Leader” as a children’s game.
When our boys were young, we’d play “follow the leader” at the beach and
you had to walk in the leader’s footprints.
For believers, “Follow the Leader” isn’t a game. It’s a way of life.
Jesus’ suffering is the lesson on the “top of the page” that we’re supposed
to copy. Jesus has suffered. He has left huge footprints for us. We are to follow after
This verse impacted a writer named Charles Sheldon about a hundred years
ago, and he wrote a fictional book entitled, “In His Steps”. In the book he took a small town full of
people who were challenged by one of the pastors to ask themselves the question
“What would Jesus do?” every time they faced a decision.
People’s lives where changed when they began to look for the footprints of
Jesus, to follow His example.
This is where those letters “WWJD” come from.
But this verse is not just about making decisions, it’s about learning to
Do we suffer in the same manner that Jesus did?
In His Mother’s Steps
Davida Dalton writes:
It was a busy day in our Costa Mesa, California home. But then, with 10
children and one on the way, every day was a bit hectic. On this particular day, however, I was having trouble doing even
routine chores-all because of one little boy.
Len, who was three at the time, was on my heels no matter where I went.
Whenever I stopped to do something and turned back around, I would trip over
him. Several times, I patiently suggested fun activities to keep him occupied.
“Wouldn’t you like to play on the swing set?” I asked again.
But he simply smiled an innocent smile and said, “Oh, that’s all right,
Mommy. I’d rather be in here with you.” Then he continued to bounce happily
along behind me.
After stepping on his toes for the fifth time, I began to lose my patience
and insisted that he go outside and play with the other children. When I asked
him why he was acting this way, he looked up at me with sweet green eves and
said, “Well, Mommy, in preschool my teacher told me to walk in Jesus’
footsteps. But I can’t see him, so I’m walking in yours.”
Stuart Briscoe ("Handling Your Insecurities," Preaching Today,
Tape No. 119.)writes,
When I was in the marines, the training for commandos included cliff
assaults. The theory was that a commando raid should be a surprise, done as
quickly and as silently as possible on the area with the lightest defenses. The
lightest defense is at the point where attack is least expected. More often than not, it was the cliffs.
We would come close to the cliff in our small boats and fire one rocket up
through the darkness. Attached to the rocket was a grapnel. Attached to the
grapnel was a light rope. When the rocket landed on top of the cliff, the grapnel
would lie on the grass. We would then pull it back gently until it caught on
something. We hoped it caught on something secure.
We had expert climbers. Those guys were like spiders. They would get out of
the little boat onto the seaweed-strewn rocks, and
scale those cliffs in the dark hanging onto this thin, little rope that was on
the end of a grapnel they hoped was hanging onto something secure.
A bigger rope trailed behind them. Below, we held onto that rope. When the
climber got on the top, he would secure the rope he'd taken up and then give
two little tugs on it. The minute the two little tugs came, we jumped out of
our boats, cold and wet on the waves and rocks. We would scale the cliffs. It
was a hairy experience, except we had utter confidence in the one who'd gone
before us. We had utter confidence in the security of the rope he had fastened
Jesus has secured that rope for us.
He’s left us an example to follow.
Jesus’ example involved how He suffered.
We are going to look at some difficult things that Jesus would like us to do, but remember this – He has already paved the trail ahead
So, just what do these footsteps look like?
:22 “Who committed
no sin, Nor was deceit found in His mouth”;
:22 “Who committed
Through the rest of the paragraph, Peter will be quoting heavily from
Here he is drawing from Isaiah 53:9
(Isaiah 53:9 NKJV) And they made His grave with the wicked— But with the
rich at His death, Because He had done no violence, Nor was any
deceit in His mouth.
In the Septuagint, “violence” translates anomia, or “lawlessness”
instead of hamartia.
The point here is that when Jesus suffered, it wasn’t because He had done
something wrong and deserved it (“committed no sin”), and it wasn’t because He
was some sort of charlatan (“deceit”).
He suffered unfairly.
So how did Jesus handle it when He was mistreated unfairly?
sin – hamartia – to be
without a share in; to miss the mark; to err, be mistaken; to miss or wander
from the path of uprightness and honor, to do or go wrong
deceit – dolos – craft, deceit, guile. This is the third time Peter has used this
word (or a close form of it).
(1 Peter 2:1 NKJV) Therefore, laying aside all malice, all deceit, hypocrisy,
envy, and all evil speaking,
(1 Peter 2:2 NKJV) as newborn babes, desire the pure milk of the word, that you
may grow thereby,
:23 who, when He was
reviled, did not revile in return; when He suffered, He did not threaten, but
committed Himself to Him who judges righteously;
:23 did not revile in return
Peter is pulling ideas from Isaiah 53:7.
(Isaiah 53:7 NKJV) He was oppressed and He was afflicted, Yet He
opened not His mouth; He was led as a lamb to the slaughter, And as a
sheep before its shearers is silent, So He opened not His mouth.
he was reviled – loidoreo – to
reproach, rail at, revile, heap abuse upon
present passive participle
revile in return – antiloidoreo – to
revile in turn, to retort railing
imperfect active indicative
“Revile” means to be verbally abusive to someone.
Jesus did not get into a shouting match with His enemies. He didn’t get into a name calling contest.
:23 He did not threaten
threatened – apeileo – to threaten, menace
When Jesus was being arrested in the Garden, He told Peter that if He
wanted to, He could request thousands of angels to help (Mat. 26:53).
Jesus had power.
26:53 NKJV) Or do you think that I cannot now pray to My
Father, and He will provide Me with more than twelve legions of angels?
In the Avengers’ movie “Infinity War”, the evil Thanos
(whose name means “Death” in Greek) had the magic glove, snapped his fingers
and half the universe disappeared into dust.
In the last movie, “End Game”, there’s one last “finger snap”…
I like the picture that when Iron Man snaps his finger, and all his friends
come back to life and his enemies are dust… (kind of like Jesus)
When Jesus returns the second time, He won’t snap His fingers, He will just
speak a Word…
19:15 NKJV) Now out of His mouth goes a sharp sword, that
with it He should strike the nations…
I have this idea that He’s going to simply speak a word, and all His
enemies will be put to death.
Can you imagine the kinds of things Jesus could have threatened those who
were beating Him at His first coming?
Jesus is the most powerful being in the universe, but when He was reviled,
He didn’t return with threats.
If you are silent when challenged, it may not be because you are weak. It might be because you are trusting God.
:23 committed Himself to Him who judges righteously
committed – paradidomi – to give into the hands (of another);
to give over into (one’s) power or use; to deliver to one something to keep,
use, take care of, manage; to deliver up one to custody, to be judged,
condemned, punished, scourged, tormented, put to death
Jesus knew He could trust the Father with what was happening to Him.
He knew that ultimately God would make sure that everyone who needed to be
judged would be.
Do you believe that?
Do you believe that every person who causes you grief will one day be
judged by God correctly and fairly?
In Isaiah 49, God says,
49:25c NKJV) …For I will contend with him who contends with
I suggest we learn to quote that great theologian, Mr. T., in reminding us
of what our attitude should be when people come against us.
Video: Rocky III – Pity the Fool
We ought to “pity the fool” who comes against us unfairly
because God will take care of it.
God will one day judge each person correctly.
In the next two verses, Peter is quoting from Isaiah 53:5,6
(Isaiah 53:5 NKJV) But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for
our iniquities; The
chastisement for our peace was upon Him, And by His stripes we are healed.
(Isaiah 53:6 NKJV) All we like sheep have gone astray; We have turned, every
one, to his own way; And the Lord has laid
on Him the iniquity of us all.
:24 who Himself bore our
sins in His own body on the tree, that we, having died to sins, might live for
righteousness—by whose stripes you were healed.
being dead – apogenomenos (“apart” + “to become”) – to be removed
from, depart; to die, to die to anything
aorist middle participle
:25 For you were like
sheep going astray, but have now returned to the
Shepherd and Overseer of your souls.
going astray – planao – to cause
to stray, to lead astray, lead aside from the right way; to go astray, wander,
returned – epistrepho – transitively; to turn to; to the
worship of the true God; to cause to return, to bring back
Overseer – episkopos – an overseer; a guardian,
:24 bore our sins in His own body
The blessings of submission
Jesus lived a life of submission, not just to authorities, but to God
Jesus’ submission in the face of the suffering He endured, resulted in blessing
v. 24 – He bore our sins
v. 24 – We can live to righteousness
v. 24 – We are healed
v. 25 – We return to God
Jesus’ submission to the Father (“Your will be done”) lead to our
He died so we might be forgiven.
Do you think there is a benefit when you are treated unfairly
by someone in authority over you, and you choose to still submit?
Last week Caleb shared the story behind the song “I have decided to follow
A Welsh missionary had been in India and as a result, a family in a small
village got saved.
The father of the family took up the mantle of reaching
people for Jesus when the missionary went home.
The village chief wanted to put an end to this Christian
nonsense and slowly one-by-one he killed the family, trying to get the father
to renounce Jesus.
Finally the father was killed.
It was that final act that broke the chief, and he became
The first martyr of the early church was a fiery young preacher named
He was arrested by the Sanhedrin and condemned to death by
He gave a brilliant witness about Jesus before he died.
In fact, Stephen even sounded a little like Jesus with his
final words (as if he was following Jesus’ example).
(Acts 7:60 NKJV) Then he knelt down
and cried out with a loud voice, “Lord, do not charge them with this sin.”
There was quite a crowd there watching this happen…
(Acts 7:58 NKJV) …And the witnesses laid down their
clothes at the feet of a young man named Saul.
Many of us think that the dying witness of Stephen played
a big part on the day that Saul turned his life over to Jesus,
and would become known as Paul the apostle.
You may not be aware of it, but people are watching you.
Will they see Jesus in the example you leave?