The Book of I PETER
James J. Barker
WALKING WITH GOD
- It is amazing how two people can look at the same thing and yet come to opposite
- Gherman Titov (1935 – 2000)
was a Russian astronaut. He was the
second man to orbit the Earth (Yuri Gagarin was the first).
- After his return from outer
space, Mr. Titov said, "Some people say there is a God out there...but in my
travels around the earth all day long, I looked around and did not see Him. The rocket was made by our people. I don't believe in God. I believe in man, his strength, his
possibilities, his reason."
consider the words of another astronaut, an American named James A. McDivitt
(born in 1929).
- James A. McDivitt is a
retired Brigadier General in the USAF and a former NASA astronaut and engineer
who commanded the Gemini 4 flight in which Edward H. White performed the first
US space walk.
McDivitt orbited the earth 62 times, and said this: "I did not see God looking
into my space-cabin window, as I do not see God looking into my car's windshield
on earth. But I could recognize His
work in the stars as well as when walking among flowers in a garden. If you can be with God on earth, you can
be with God in space as well."
did these two astronauts come to see things so differently? The answer is obvious: Mr. McDivitt was
looking through the eyes of faith (cf. I Peter
WALKING BY FAITH
- Second Corinthians 5:7 says, "For we walk by faith, not by sight" (cf. I
- In John 20:29, our Lord said
to Thomas, "Thomas, because thou hast seen me, thou hast believed: blessed are
they that have not seen, and yet have believed."
- Spurgeon said, "A little
faith will bring your soul to heaven; a great faith will bring heaven to your
- Someone said, "Faith sees
the invisible, believes the incredible, and receives the
- The world says, "Seeing is
believing," but the Christian says, "Believing is
- Because we walk by faith, we
can "rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory"
- The word "glory" or
"glorify" is found 15 times in this
epistle. The theme of the epistle
is victory over suffering (1:7, 8, 11, 21, 24; 2:12, 20; 4:11, 13, 14,
16; 5:1, 4, 10, 11).
- Our salvation has three
aspects -- past, present, and future, and all three are in view here in this
Past -- "hath begotten us again unto a lively hope"
Present -- "kept by the power of God through faith"
Future -- "Receiving the end (outcome) of your faith,
even the salvation of your souls" (1:9).
We were saved from the penalty of sin; we are being saved from the power
of sin; and some day we will be saved from the very presence of sin (1:9).
WALKING IN THE
- The Holy Spirit is first
mentioned in verse 2 -- "through sanctification of the
- The Holy Spirit sanctifies,
and the Holy Spirit indwells (I Peter 1:11).
- Furthermore, the Holy Spirit
testifies (1:11). He
is called "the Spirit of Christ," signifying the preexistence of Christ, and the
deity of Christ.
- The Holy Spirit testifies
- On the Day of Pentecost,
Peter stood up in the midst of the disciples, and said, "Men and brethren, this
scripture must needs have been fulfilled, which the Holy Ghost by the
mouth of David spake before concerning Judas, which was guide to them that
took Jesus" (Acts 1:16).
- This work of the Holy Spirit
is further explained in II Peter 1:21.
- It is the same blessed Holy
Spirit who endues us with power when we preach the Gospel (I Peter
- This enduement of power was
promised by our Lord. He said in
Luke 24:49, "And, behold, I send the promise of my Father upon you: but tarry ye
in the city of Jerusalem, until ye be endued with power from on
- And He said in Acts 1:8,
"But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye
shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria,
and unto the uttermost part of the earth."
- The Holy Spirit is sent down
from heaven in a marvelous way when Bible preachers proclaim the glorious Gospel
of the Lord Jesus Christ (I Peter 1:12).
- This is so wonderful that
the angels desire to look into it (1:12b).
- The angels look down from
heaven and see sinners convicted by the Holy Spirit. And they see Gospel preachers filled
with the Spirit of God. And they
see Spirit-filled soulwinners reaching lost souls with the
- Our Lord said in Luke 15:7,
"I say unto you, that likewise joy shall be in heaven over one sinner that
repenteth, more than over ninety and nine just persons, which need no
- "Saved by the blood of the
The angels rejoicing because it is done;
A child of
the Father, joint heir with the Son,
Saved by the blood of the Crucified
-- S. J. Henderson.
- We have certain advantages
over the Old Testament prophets.
They "searched diligently" (1:10, 11) to discover the time when the
Messiah would come (1:11).
- They could not see the
sufferings of Christ, and the glory that should follow" (1:11), the first coming
of Christ, the church age, the second coming to establish His kingdom, etc.
- We are on the other side of
the cross and now wait for the second coming of Christ (cf. Daniel 12:4, 8, 9;
WALKING IN THE FEAR OF THE
- If a Christian is walking by
faith, and walking in the Spirit, he is not walking in the flesh. Galatians 5:16 says, "This I say then,
Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the
- Romans 8:4 says we "walk not after the flesh, but
after the Spirit."
- Here in I Peter 1:17 it says
we are to pass the time of our sojourning here "in
- Psalm 19:9 says, " The fear of the LORD is clean, enduring for
- Psalm 111:10 says, "The
fear of the LORD is the beginning of
- Proverbs 1:7 says, "The
fear of the LORD is the beginning of
- Proverbs 8:13 says, "The
fear of the LORD is to hate
- Proverbs 9:10 says, "The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom: and the
knowledge of the holy is understanding."
- Proverbs 10:27 says, "The
fear of the LORD prolongeth days: but the years of
the wicked shall be shortened."
- Describing the wicked
condition of fallen mankind, the apostle Paul says, "There is no fear of God before their eyes"
(Romans 3:18; cf. Psalm 36:1).
- There are many other similar
statements in Scripture. The Bible describes believers as "strangers and pilgrims" passing through this wicked world (2:11), and we are
to pass the time of our sojourning in the fear of God (I Peter
- Acts 9:31 says the
Christians were "walking in the fear of the
Lord, and in the comfort of the Holy Ghost, were
- "Wherefore gird up the
loins of your mind" (1:13) means we are to keep our minds renewed through
constant Bible reading.
- In eastern lands, people
wear long, flowing robes. When they
walk quickly they tie the robe up around their waist with a belt.
- A girded mind is a mind that
is properly instructed by the Word of God.
It is wrapped tight like a girded robe.
- There is an expression
people use -- "he is not wrapped too tight." It means the person is unstable, and
irrational and emotional.
- "Wherefore gird up the loins
of your mind, be sober..." (1:13).
- "Sober" (1:13) means
self-controlled and serious about the things of God. Some people never touch a drop of
liquor but they lack self-control.
They are not disciplined.
- "Sober," "obedient" (1:14),
and "holy" (1:15, 16) are words that describe godly believers who walk in the
fear of God (1:17).
- "As obedient children,
not fashioning yourselves according to the former lusts in your
ignorance" (1:14). When a
person is saved the Holy Spirit works in his heart and enables him to cultivate
a life of personal holiness (1:15, 16).
- This does not come
automatically. Therefore we are
commanded by God: "But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all
manner of conversation; Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy" (1:15,
- The "judgment" in I Peter
1:17 is a reference to the judgment seat of Christ because these words of
exhortation are given to Christians, and Christians will not stand at the great
white throne judgment.
- Writing to Christians, the
apostle Paul said, "For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ;
that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he
hath done, whether it be good or bad" (II Cor.
- God will judge us, not as a
stern judge with wicked sinners, but as a "Father" (1:17) with His
- If we are "obedient
children" (1:14), we will receive a good reward.