Sunday, June 11, 2017

Maintaining A Godly Testimony

Temple Baptist Church - 6-11-2017
1 Peter 2:11-20


A.  In these verses, which I have preached on for two weeks previously, we find the commandment of testimony before the lost.  I once read where someone said that “A life lived is worth a thousand sermons preached.”

2 Corinthians 3:2-3  Ye are our epistle written in our hearts, known and read of all men:  (3)  Forasmuch as ye aremanifestly declared to be the epistle of Christ ministered by us, written not with ink, but with the Spirit of the living God; not in tables of stone, but in fleshy tables of the heart.

B.  In verse 11, Peter addresses the situation of the readers: “I beseech you as strangers and pilgrims.” 

1.  Strangers – to not belong, foreigners or aliens.

2.  Pilgrims – a foreigner who resides in a strange place but whose citizenship is in another country.

C.  These were actual foreigners residing in a land in which they did not belong.  We are spiritual foreigners who were born here but have our citizenship in heaven.

D.  Peter speaks of our living honestly before the lost.  Honesty is much more than just being good citizens.  By application and context, it is our Christianity lived before the world.

E.  We are to abstain from fleshly lust that war against the soul and to be law abiding citizens.

F.  I want to look at the rest of the context tonight.  Living a good testimony before the lost speaks of:

1.  Honoring all men.   Verse 17.  To treat with respect.  To do unto others as you would have others do unto you.  Regardless of social status, race, religion, or any other difference.  God made all men; God loves all men; Jesus died for all men and would have all men to be saved and come to the knowledge of the truth.  Be respectful and kind to others.

2.  Love the brotherhood.  Verse 17.  This should come natural to God’s children as the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost BUT, too often, we get out of sorts with others.  What a terrible testimony before the lost!  They hear of the church fights, church splits, and running the preacher off.  Charity covers a multitude of sin!

3.  Fear God.  Verse 17.  Self-explanatory!  If we fear God, everything else falls into place spiritually.  Just a reminder that God knows our thoughts afar off.  Light and darkness are the same with Him.

4.  Honour the king.  Verse 17.  Honor him by praying for him!  If you want your country to change, do something about it.  Prayer does change things.

5.  Be a good servant.  Verse 18.  Be a good servant to good bosses and bad ones.  You get paid for working so do the best that you can to be a good worker.

Conclusion:  It is easy to have a great testimony when things go well and you are around likeable people.  The lost watch us when troubles and tough times come because it is then that our light can shine the brightest.

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