How to Visit Planet Earth
November 1, 2020
How to Visit Planet Earth
Text: 1 Peter 2:11
Sojourners, exiles, strangers, aliens, temporary residents…
What if we feel out of place because we are. What if we don’t feel like we belong because we don’t. What if we were never meant to fit in.
This world is not my home I’m just a passing through
My treasures are laid up somewhere beyond the blue
The angels beckon me from heaven’s open door
And I can’t feel at home in this world anymore
Road Map to visiting planet earth:
1. Visit Earth =
1 Peter 2:11: We don’t belong to this world, so don’t behave like a native. To obey Christ I will have to disobey my sinful nature.
1 Peter 2:24: Jesus doesn’t just forgive us of sins, but gives us the power to walk away from sin.
1 Peter 2:12: Unbelievers accused Christians of all manner of bad behavior. Peter advises to live lives so clean, so respectable, that any accusation seems absurd.
Things unbelievers accused Christians of:
- Cannibalism. (Misunderstood the Lord’s Supper as eating someone’s body and drinking their blood.)
- Disruption of business. (Because when Christianity spread in a city, the local idol businesses would lose money.)
- Poverty. (Romans did not understand why so many poor, slaves and women were part of this movement.)
- Atheism. (Romans and Greek accused Christians of Atheism because they did not worship the pagan gods. Christians were mono-theist.)
- 1 Peter 2:12: The day of God’s visitation could refer to either the Second Coming, or the day he personally visits their heart with the Gospel through the Holy Spirit.
2. Visit Earth =
As we step into a world that we are not really part of, our commanding officer tells us that he expects us to honor the authority already established on earth.
- 1 Peter 1:13-14: All authority comes from God. The job of government is to enforce justice and punish wrongdoing.
- 1 Peter 1:15: God is using my obedience as a witness.
Flavius Claudius Julianus (also called “Julian the Apostate”) who hated Christians, wrote this about them:
“Atheism has been specifically advanced through the loving treatment rendered to strangers. Through their care for the burial of the dead it is a scandal that there is not a single Jew who is a beggar. The Godless Galileans care not only for their own poor, but for ours as well.”
- 1 Peter 1:16: A command, to enjoy the freedoms given within the community of faith. But that freedom is not given to undermine society.
- 1 Peter 1:17: Notice the command to “honor the emperor.” The emperor he is referring to is Nero.
Areas we can do better:
3. Visit Earth =
- 1 Peter 2:18: God used Scripture to oppose the practice of slavery when dealing with slave owners. For instance, the entire books of Exodus and Philemon are dedicated to the abolishment of slavery. Paul called the practice of selling humans “wicked” (1 Tim. 1:10.) The ideals of Christianity would eliminate slavery. But Peter was not writing to the emperor of Rome, he was writing to Christians, some of whom found themselves as followers of Christ but slaves in this world. How should they act?
- 1 Peter 2:18, the command to be subject to masters is not mirrored by any modern institution expect perhaps the workforce (where you are still paid and given rights) or the military.
4. I NEED HELP! =