Lectionary Year A
May 12, 2002
1 Peter 4:12-14, 5:6-11
(JFC) A. DESCRIPTION OF THE AUDIENCE
Small membership Presbyterian Church in a small town with a small United
Methodist College and a lot of agricultural and other related small
industries. They have had some sensitive and insightful ministers in
recent years. I am substituting while they look for an Interim and prepare
to call another pastor. They might be unable to support a fulltime pastor
in future years. Their worship service reflects thoughtful planning and
lay participation in leadership responsibilities.
(JFC) B. INTENDED GOALS
Let's hope we can face our (and the world's) problems realistically and
try to rely on our Sovereign God as we go on and grow into the future. Let's
try to put evil in its proper place and get on with living with and for Christ.
(JFC) C. ADDRESS
A culmination of 1 Peter, this passage starts by declaring God's love to
its message. God loves people in Asia Minor in the first century(ies) of
the Common Era. God loves us, as well. This text says so.
I. Our thoughts, regarding doing good and suffering and getting renounced, etc.
Testing is a strange experience. We mix up the ordinary with the
extraordinary. Life gets more confusing than God makes it to be.
II. Humility helps us decipher life as God intends it to be = enjoyed.
God's mighty hand, anthropomorphically speaking, can handle our
problems. If the battle between good and evil disturbs us, we might find
some comfort and hope in God's ability and willingness to share the burden of
its weight on us.
III. Discipline and Alertness
Sure, it's gonna take some effort expending on our part. 1 Peter 4 and 5
tell us how. Today's text leads us to resist evil, recognize global
suffering and look beyond suffering (it is so temporary) to the God of all
grace's calling us and completing us and supporting us, strengthening us and
establishing us, too.
God's dominion be acclaimed here and now and everywhere we go all the rest
of our lives.
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