|설교본문||1 Peter 1:3-9|
|설교 한 주일||April 4, 2010|
“A Living Hope of Resurrection”
1 Peter 1:3-9
(Reading of 1 Peter 1:3-9 – NIV)
3Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, 4and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade—kept in heaven for you, 5who through faith are shielded by God's power until the coming of the salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last time. 6In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. 7These have come so that your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may be proved genuine and may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed. 8Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy, 9for you are receiving the goal of your faith, the salvation of your souls.
It is resurrection Sunday, may I ask you: Do you believe the Resurrection? If you don’t believe, it’s okay; but, if you don’t believe, it’s not okay as well. Many people, even the so-called Christians in this world, don’t believe even the resurrection because they don’t know the real meaning of resurrection. On the day of resurrection, how will your body be changed – same body or a more beautiful body? On the resurrection day, can you see your beloved one or not? What about if somebody’s body has been buried a long, long time ago then on the day of resurrection, how will that body be formed again so that we can see?
Resurrection day – one thing I know is that the body of resurrection is we can see from the body of Jesus Christ – somehow, it has been changed. Even Jesus Christ, after resurrection, moved into this place to some other place even there’s some doors closed. It is somehow different. If the door is closed, our body cannot move or transfer into that space, from this space to that space. We call it different dimension. One certain thing is that the body of resurrection is far different from what we have today. I know some women put something into their body to make it more beautiful. What about in the coffin, if your body already became into dirt and certain things that remain in the coffin which does not belong to you – it comes from the cosmetics from the hospital?
When I’m talking about the resurrection, it is not merely talking about our body and our appearances. But in resurrection, we can see from the Lord Jesus Christ how that resurrection makes us to be changed from this life after resurrection. People seems like they don’t want to be resurrected. They want to be resurrected but not today because they like the life what they live by everyday making them satisfied regardless of how the Bible teaches us. So people don’t like Jesus Christ; seem like they attend church but the heart is very far away from Jesus Christ. Even in the church, they have argument and fight each other. They come to the church for worshipping but what they are doing all the way is gossiping.
This morning, I read a very simple article from the internet about that church which has about eight Associate Pastors and the Senior Pastor is good especially in writing. He wrote many volumes of book; he put his sermons every Sunday. Every download of his sermon is five hundred pesos. I was thinking; he says it is for mission. Beside of that, he is telling about the mission as well and then he has a very big building for mission.
Dear brothers and sisters, our church is a mission-oriented church whether you believe it or not. The purpose of this church is for mission, why – because the Pastor is a missionary? No. The ultimate purpose of church is to reach out to the people. To reach out the people, God became a flesh. To reach out to the people, God, Himself, died on the cross. In order to get His people from Satan in this world, He died on the cross. He paid the ransom to the world and then He returned His people from the world. Brothers and sisters, if you are in this church, SFCF, I encourage and challenge you that you would be involved in mission world one way or another. Please don’t come to the church then you just sit down and in a few hours you go back home then forget everything. Our time is so brief and limited.
On this resurrection Sunday, I want you to see Jesus on what He did and how He spoken to His people today. I challenge the students that you will have future and vision that you will be a good student – somebody who is such a great person – for your nation, family and community as well. But don’t forget to have a vision in Jesus Christ for reaching out to the people, why? When you dedicate yourself for the mission, you will have all the resources from the Lord which is coming from heaven. Trust Him. You dedicate yourself for mission of the Lord; the other things will follow automatically. Of course you have to get through to all the training course.
Peter, I want you to think of Peter, his life, what he used to be. Peter has denied Jesus for three times. We can say it was his failure. He was rebuked by Jesus Christ. When Jesus said, “I have to go to Jerusalem to die,” and then Peter said, “No, Lord, it’s impossible, you don’t go there. How come you go there, you’re my master. I have you, you have me. I protect you Jesus. Don’t worry. You don’t need to go to Jerusalem.” And Jesus said to Peter, “Get behind of me, Satan! You don’t know the will of God. You’re just thinking about what people and man think.” I don’t say Peter is no good. I don’t say he is useless. It’s not my point. Even good people, even Pastors, even saints, sometimes, Satan is working in his life. Be careful.
Peter was not a perfect man just like all the people do. Peter today, confess his faith in this Chapter of 1Peter 1. I want you to see this man, how come, has been changed.
On resurrection Sunday, it is actually the day of God’s promise manifested. What promise? The promise is for salvation on resurrection Sunday. The dreams come true; all the promise became a reality. I want you see what promise God promised? And then now on that Resurrection Sunday, people could see with their own eyes. It’s not imaginary, it’s not illusion. It was not the vision. People, even Lucas, described about 500 people met Jesus Christ after his resurrection. ‘Met’ means person to person. His promise: I will pass all the sins what we have if you believe in Jesus Christ. So at the cross, we lay all our burdens.
Dear brothers, are you still thinking about your problems? If so, I challenge you, lay down before Lord. And at the emptied tomb, there’s no Jesus on cross, there’s no Jesus in the tomb as well. Let’s don’t find him. Let’s don’t seek him in that cross. Actually we have a good relationship because of empty tomb which means resurrection of Jesus Christ. He showed us that “I resurrected, I was resurrected, so will you?”
And then he has given his verse in Bible in 1Peter 1: 3. He says, “He has given us new birth into a living hope because through the resurrection.” Peter never failed. Before he failed, but after he met Jesus Christ person to person, after resurrection, somehow he has been changed. He never talked about his failure at all. He had never been depressed by his failure before. Yet, he is talking about the new birth. I know it’s very hard to understand what we have – the new birth into a living hope. We have hope; but Peter says, living hope means we still have progress; it’s continuing, never ending hope. That is a living hope we have. What hope do you have in Jesus Christ? Just name it. That living hope, we can have only through the resurrection. This is Resurrection Sunday; Peter said that this is important; I want you to remember this – though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. You know why Peter says this? There’s a king named Nero. Nero has a very special character. He killed so many Jews – actually Christians. Even he fought in Jerusalem and in all the place. He even filled water in the coliseum and he has some boats had some kind of battle. He’s some kind of crazy king, Nero. So Nero put all accusations into the Christians – of what he did so he has the chance to kill all the Christians.
There’s one Pastor, who was working out in a gym, in Korean that’s a public spa. He went there and then one worker in the spa complained and report him that they caught him using the gym without permission.
So the Pastor says, “No, no, no. I never use gym without permission. I just use the far side.”
The worker in gym was very much rude and he said to Pastor, “No, I saw you, you use gym and you never pay it! You pay your ticket only for spa.”
So the Pastor came to explain, “No, I never use it.”
And the man said, “No I saw you.”
And the Pastor says, “How can you see me? I never go there, it’s impossible.”
“We have record, CCTV,” says the manager.
So the Pastor said, “It’s a deal, if you can’t see in CCTV that I’m working out in gym, you will have this; if I’m not there, how much you will pay me back?”
And then the manager said, “No, it’s impossible! One hundred percent, I saw you!”
The Pastor that time was very upset because he knows what he did and he did not. So eventually he called the policeman and they made a very big scene there that time. He called his wife and elder who provide his membership to the gym.
And the elder said to the manager, “This is a Pastor!”
And the manager said, “That’s why I don’t believe him!” So they made a very big scene, it really happened. And then they took all the tapes from CCTV and found there’s no Pastor.
You know, in this world never believe even I’m a Pastor. When I come back from Korea and passing NAIA, I said, “I’m a Pastor.” And the workers there in immigration said, “So what?” Even in Korea, I brought some Filipino friend one Pastor that time and there’s one Korean immigration office staff whom I explained to him, “I am guardian, I guarantee...”And then I said, “I am a Pastor.” And then the immigration officer in Korea says, “So what?” So I’m very much proud of being a Pastor in Korea. Everybody says, “So what Pastor makes any sense to me.”
This world never recognizes Pastor. This world never recognizes Christians. Why? Do you know? They are blinded, because all Christians keep their mouth closed. They go with this world, there’s no any significant to a way in a life showing that you and me are Christians. For them, the resurrection has no any meaning because even to what the Bible says about resurrection, it never gives them any teaching and feeling at all. Oppositions, trials, in the name of Jesus; because being a Christian means trials but yet dear brothers and sisters, if you believe in Jesus, you will still be happy whenever this world never recognize you as a Christian.
Peter was so depressed because of the situation under King Nero. That time, Peter said, “Rejoice!” Resurrection means rejoice. Though you are suffering from all kinds of grief and that makes you tear some because of all kinds of trials in life, in verse 8 it says, though you have not seen Jesus Christ before, you loved Him; do we? Do we love Him even we have never seen Him before? Again it says, “…and even though you do not see him now…”
When I am crying for the situations I just click some letters on computer and then it says – What is the main problem in the Philippines? One answered four things in one website: the first one is poverty; second one is corruption; third is lack of job opportunity; and last one is… (I‘m sorry I forgot.) Maybe people or you are suffering from these trials. But dear brothers and sisters, God gave us Jesus Christ to die and then He became the first fruit among who died. Now is our turn, just like what Peter said, even though we don’t see Him… I am dying because of poverty. I am dying because of false accusations. I am dying because of certain bad situations. Just like Peter said, “I am dying; I am under such great persecutions.” Because of resurrection, he says – believe in God. That is how we recover or restore in our lives. People believe that what you see; people believe in what we have; people believe what we came here; people believe what we experience today and then they enjoy. But many cases Bible says even today, resurrection Sunday, we don’t see Him. Today, when I am dying because of that situation, I could not see Him; it seems like Jesus had never been my help at all. I’m dying and drowning but yet it says – believe in Him. Why? Maybe, I am going to die because of hunger. I’m going to die because of certain situation, but yet I rejoice, again rejoice!
Brothers and sisters, what is your situation today? Every night when you go to bed, all the things around you press you so hard, yet today, on this resurrection Sunday, God says believe in Him because we have nothing in our hands how can we believe anything. I need something on my hands to solve the entangled problems I faced today but yet Bible says to you dear brothers and sisters – believe in Him. That is the faith talking about in 1 Peter.
I want to see Romans 8:18, Apostle Paul said, I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us. Dear brothers and sisters, because of sufferings, broken relationship, something happening in your life today, you are getting away from the Lord? No, brothers and sisters, we get near to the cross every day because the glory of resurrection, what we will have in Jesus Christ is for sure, one hundred percent. Even though I am dying today without help, it seems like God closed the gate or the doors of heaven, I am dying like Jesus died on the cross, yet the Bible says today believe in Him because we have the final goal. It is impossible to express because this is such a glorious joy. This is our goal in our faith. Dying in the situation in present life today is the ultimate goal of our life. See on a resurrection Sunday on verse 8, the ultimate goal of our faith is the salvation in Jesus Christ. You believe that we’ll have salvation; you believe that I am saved yet we can praise the Lord – Praise be to the God (verse 3) because He has given us new birth which is resurrection and salvation.
Is grief, sorrows or sufferings all around you? So, do I? But I never failed; I have never been dismayed. I never declare to myself that I am a failure. Because I have a promise which God manifested in Jesus Christ that we have today in resurrection. It’s time again to stand up as Jesus emptied His tomb so we will empty our situation to get out from all these trials and situations. Jesus showed the resurrection; it will be our benefit.
Rev. David Bang