PHBC July 27 and August 3, 1997

Series: First Peter, Sermon #24

WHEREFORE, IF YOU HAVE TASTED THAT THE LORD IS GRACIOUS

Part I & II

THINGS WHICH HAVE NO PLACE IN THE LIFE OF BORN AGAIN PILGRIMS WHO HAVE TASTED THAT THE LORD IS GRACIOUS


Scripture: I Peter 2:1-25

TEXT: I Peter 2:1-3

INTRO: There is no such thing as truly believing the doctrines of the word of God and not living accordingly.

In chapter one of this First Epistle of Peter, we have seen a number of blessings that are ours through the manifold grace of our Great God and Saviour. We have seen our gracious election of God. We have seen that we are begotten to a living hope in Christ. We have studied the blessed inheritance to which we are predestinated. We have looked at the wonderful keeping power of God. We have even been caused to realize that even the trials of our faith are much more precious than gold.

It has been revealed in this first chapter that we enjoy a salvation and know things about it that the holy angels desire to look into. We have seen that it was the desire of the prophets to also look into this. We have been told to gird up the loins of our minds and to be holy people practically, because our God is holy.

We have considered the preciousness of the blood of Christ. We have seen that our redemption by that blood was purposed and planned by God before the foundation of the world. We have seen the enduring, everlasting word of God contrasted with the fragility of human life on earth. We have also seen that it is by the word of God that we are regenerated. It is the instrumental cause of our regeneration. The great importance of the word and its high exaltation by God is evident in this chapter.

And now we come to the second chapter and Peter introduces it with the word, "wherefore," calling on us to do some things based on the things that have gone before. Wherefore says that we should do the things that follow on account of or because of the things that have gone before.

Peter goes further in saying that we ought to do these things if we have tasted that the Lord is gracious.

LAY ASIDE THE SIN OF MALICE.

Definitions by scholars.

According to Strong, Malice, Greek-kakia {kak-ee'-ah} means, malignity, malice, ill-will, desire to injure, wickedness, depravity. It can be so deep that the one harboring malice is not ashamed to break laws or the Word of God, to follow this malice to its goal.

According to Websterís Dictionary, it means a malicious desire to see someone injured or bring injury to someone.

According to Vine it denotes a person with an evil character.

Admonitions concerning malice.

Paul admonishes the church at Corinth to be certain they did not come to the Lordís Table with malice in their hearts. 1 Corinthians 5:8 Therefore let us keep the feast, not with old leaven, neither with the leaven of malice and wickedness; but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth.

Children rarely carry grudges so Paul admonished that we be childlike in the matter of malice. 1 Corinthians 14:20 Brethren, be not children in understanding: howbeit in malice be ye children, but in understanding be men.

Paul exhorted the Ephesian congregation to put away all malice. Ephesians 4:31 Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice.

Paul called on the Colossians to put away any malice they harbored. Colossians 3:8 But now ye also put off all these; anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy communication out of your mouth.

Paul reminded Titus that malice belongs to the old nature, not the new. Titus 3:3 For we ourselves also were sometimes foolish, disobedient, deceived, serving divers lusts and pleasures, living in malice and envy, hateful, and hating one another.

Instances and illustrations of malice.

It was malice that caused Cain to kill Able. Genesis 4:8 And Cain talked with Abel his brother: and it came to pass, when they were in the field, that Cain rose up against Abel his brother, and slew him.

It was malice that caused Esau to go after Jacob. Genesis 27:41 And Esau hated Jacob because of the blessing wherewith his father blessed him: and Esau said in his heart, The days of mourning for my father are at hand; then will I slay my brother Jacob.

It was malice that caused Haman to seek the death of Mordecai. Esther 3:5-15

It was malice in the heart of Herodias which caused John the Baptist to lose his head. Matthew 14:3-10 For Herod had laid hold on John, and bound him, and put him in prison for Herodias' sake, his brother Philip's wife. 4 For John said unto him, It is not lawful for thee to have her. 5 And when he would have put him to death, he feared the multitude, because they counted him as a prophet. 6 But when Herod's birthday was kept, the daughter of Herodias danced before them, and pleased Herod. 7 Whereupon he promised with an oath to give her whatsoever she would ask. 8 And she, being before instructed of her mother, said, Give me here John Baptist's head in a charger. 9 And the king was sorry: nevertheless for the oath's sake, and them which sat with him at meat, he commanded it to be given her. 10 And he sent, and beheaded John in the prison.

These are but a few instances which clearly explain why Peter said that Pilgrims who have been born again should lay aside all malice. 1 Peter 2:1 Wherefore laying aside all malice.

LAY ASIDE ALL GUILE.

Definitions of guile.

According to Strong, it means to be crafty and deceitful.

According to Webster it means to be deceitful, cunning or duplicitous.

According to my Thesaurus in has several synonyms such as chicanery, duplicity, deceitful, etc.

According to Vine it has the idea of putting out bait or setting a snare.

Admonitions to put away guile.

The Psalmist admonished that we keep our lips from speaking guile. Psalm 34:13 Keep thy tongue from evil, and thy lips from speaking guile.

Enjoying the Christian life requires that we refrain from the use of guile in our dealings with one another. 1 Peter 3:10 For he that will love life, and see good days, let him refrain his tongue from evil, and his lips that they speak no guile.

Illustrations of guile both good and bad.

Jesus praised Nathaniel for being a man in whom there was no guile. John 1:47 Jesus saw Nathanael coming to him, and saith of him, Behold an Israelite indeed, in whom is no guile!

Paul referred to his not being financially burdensome to the Corinthians when he preached to them as being crafty and using guile to catch them. 2 Corinthians 12:14 Behold, the third time I am ready to come to you; and I will not be burdensome to you: for I seek not yours, but you: for the children ought not to lay up for the parents, but the parents for the children.

He declares that he did not use guile in evangelizing the Thessalonians. 1 Thessalonians 2:3 For our exhortation was not of deceit, nor of uncleanness, nor in guile.

One of the characteristics of Jesus was that he was without guile. 1 Peter 2:22 Who did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth:

LAY ASIDE ALL HYPOCRISIES.

Definitions of Hypocrisy.

Strong say the Greek word translated hypocrisy means "the acting of a stage player, dissimulation."

Vine says, "play-acting, pretence.

Webster says "a feigning to be something one is not, or to believe something one does not believe."

Admonitions to avoid hypocrisy.

James declares that the wisdom which God gives is free of hypocrisy. James 3:17 But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and easy to be intreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy.

Beware that you not think and purport yourself as something you are not. Galatians 6:3 For if a man think himself to be something, when he is nothing, he deceiveth himself.

Paul warns of those who have a form of godliness but deny Godís power. 2 Timothy 3:5 Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.

Paul warned about those who judge others but do the things they condemn in others. Romans 2:1 Therefore thou art inexcusable, O man, whosoever thou art that judgest: for wherein thou judgest another, thou condemnest thyself; for thou that judgest doest the same things.

Instances and illustrations of hypocrisy.

Jesus tells us of those who blew a trumpet to let every one see them give their alms to the poor. Matthew 6:2 Therefore when thou doest thine alms, do not sound a trumpet before thee, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may have glory of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward.

He also tells of those who pray to be seen of men. Matthew 6:5 And when thou prayest, thou shalt not be as the hypocrites are: for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward.

Jesus also spoke of those who put an a pious face when they fast. Matthew 6:16 Moreover when ye fast, be not, as the hypocrites, of a sad countenance: for they disfigure their faces, that they may appear unto men to fast. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward.

Jesus labeled those who drew near to him with their lips while heart was far from him as hypocrites. Matthew 15:7 Ye hypocrites, well did Esaias prophesy of you, saying,

In Matt 23 Jesus repeated describes the hypocrisy of the Scribes and Pharisees. Matthew 23:13-29 But woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye shut up the kingdom of heaven against men: for ye neither go in yourselves, neither suffer ye them that are entering to go in. 14 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye devour widows' houses, and for a pretence make long prayer: therefore ye shall receive the greater damnation. 15 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye compass sea and land to make one proselyte, and when he is made, ye make him twofold more the child of hell than yourselves. 16 Woe unto you, ye blind guides, which say, Whosoever shall swear by the temple, it is nothing; but whosoever shall swear by the gold of the temple, he is a debtor! 17 Ye fools and blind: for whether is greater, the gold, or the temple that sanctifieth the gold? 18 And, Whosoever shall swear by the altar, it is nothing; but whosoever sweareth by the gift that is upon it, he is guilty. 19 Ye fools and blind: for whether is greater, the gift, or the altar that sanctifieth the gift? 20 Whoso therefore shall swear by the altar, sweareth by it, and by all things thereon. 21 And whoso shall swear by the temple, sweareth by it, and by him that dwelleth therein. 22 And he that shall swear by heaven, sweareth by the throne of God, and by him that sitteth thereon. 23 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye pay tithe of mint and anise and cummin, and have omitted the weightier matters of the law, judgment, mercy, and faith: these ought ye to have done, and not to leave the other undone. 24 Ye blind guides, which strain at a gnat, and swallow a camel. 25 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye make clean the outside of the cup and of the platter, but within they are full of extortion and excess. 26 Thou blind Pharisee, cleanse first that which is within the cup and platter, that the outside of them may be clean also. 27 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye are like unto whited sepulchres, which indeed appear beautiful outward, but are within full of dead men's bones, and of all uncleanness. 28 Even so ye also outwardly appear righteous unto men, but within ye are full of hypocrisy and iniquity. 29 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! because ye build the tombs of the prophets, and garnish the sepulchres of the righteous,

There is also the person who is very critical of others while being very much in error himself. Luke 6:42 Either how canst thou say to thy brother, Brother, let me pull out the mote that is in thine eye, when thou thyself beholdest not the beam that is in thine own eye? Thou hypocrite, cast out first the beam out of thine own eye, and then shalt thou see clearly to pull out the mote that is in thy brother's eye.

Jesus said the leaven of the Pharisees was hypocrisy. Luke 12:1 In the mean time, when there were gathered together an innumerable multitude of people, insomuch that they trode one upon another, he began to say unto his disciples first of all, Beware ye of the leaven of the Pharisees, which is hypocrisy.

LAY ASIDE ALL ENVIES.

Definition.

Vine says envy is the feeling of displeasure produced by witnessing or hearing of the advantage or prosperity of others.

Vine also says that evil always attaches to this word. This means the word never has a good connotation.

In other words, there is no way you can envy someone and that be of the Spirit of God.

Admonitions to avoid envy.

Peter admonished these Pilgrims to whom he wrote to avoid being envious. 1 Peter 2:1 Wherefore laying aside all malice, and all guile, and hypocrisies, and ENVIES, and all evil speakings,

The Psalmist cautioned against being envious of the wicked. Psalm 37:1-2 Fret not thyself because of evildoers, neither be thou envious against the workers of iniquity. 2 For they shall soon be cut down like the grass, and wither as the green herb.

Again the writer of Proverbs 23 admonished us to avoid this sin of envy. Proverbs 23:17 Let not thine heart envy sinners: but [be thou] in the fear of the LORD all the day long.

Solomon gave this same good advice several times. Proverbs 24:19 Fret not thyself because of evil men, neither be thou envious at the wicked. Proverbs 24:1 Be not thou envious against evil men, neither desire to be with them.

Paul admonished Christians at Rome to avoid this evil. Romans 13:13 Let us walk honestly, as in the day; not in rioting and drunkenness, not in chambering and wantonness, not in strife and envying.

Paul admonished the Ga Galatians 5:26 Let us not be desirous of vain glory, provoking one another, envying one another.

Envy is sometimes evidence that a Christian has not grown in grace as he should. 1 Corinthians 3:3 For ye are yet carnal: for whereas there is among you envying, and strife, and divisions, are ye not carnal, and walk as men?

Those who truly love the brethren will not envy the material or spiritual blessings that come on others. 1 Corinthians 13:4 Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up,

Envy seemed to be a real problem in the congregation at Corinth. 2 Corinthians 12:20 For I fear, lest, when I come, I shall not find you such as I would, and that I shall be found unto you such as ye would not: lest there be debates, envyings, wraths, strifes, backbitings, whisperings, swellings, tumults.

Envy is never spiritual; it is a product of the flesh. Galatians 5:19-21 Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, 20 Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, 21 Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.

Envying is sensual, earthy, and devilish. James 3:14-16 But if ye have bitter envying and strife in your hearts, glory not, and lie not against the truth. 15 This wisdom descendeth not from above, but is earthly, sensual, devilish. 16 For where envying and strife is, there is confusion and every evil work.

Paul had a real good remedy for the eradication of envy among Christians. Philippians 2:3 [Let] nothing [be done] through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves.

This is the same idea he had in mind when he wrote to the Galatians. Galatians 5:26 Let us not be desirous of vain glory, provoking one another, envying one another.

Instances and illustrations of envy.

The Philistines envied Isaac because of his possessions. Genesis 26:14-15 For he had possession of flocks, and possession of herds, and great store of servants: and the Philistines envied him.

Rachel envied Leah when Leah bore children and she did not. Genesis 30:1 And when Rachel saw that she bare Jacob no children, Rachel envied her sister; and said unto Jacob, Give me children, or else I die.

Josephís brothers envied him because of Jacobís love of him. Genesis 37:4 And when his brethren saw that their father loved him more than all his brethren, they hated him, and could not speak peaceably unto him. Acts 7:9 And the patriarchs, moved with envy, sold Joseph into Egypt: but God was with him,

The Jews envied Paul and Barnabas because of the many who followed them. Acts 13:45 But when the Jews saw the multitudes, they were filled with envy, and spake against those things which were spoken by Paul, contradicting and blaspheming.

In a time of spiritual coolness, David became envious of the wicked. Psalm 73:3 For I was envious at the foolish, [when] I saw the prosperity of the wicked.

LAY ASIDE EVIL SPEAKINGS.

Definitions.

Strong says it means a backbiter, or backbiting, defamation of another by saying evil things about them.

Vine and others give the same meaning.

It is translated railing two times and a railer is one who seeks to hurt another by false and malicious gossip about him or her.

Admonitions to lay aside all backbiting.

We should give an angry look to those who backbite. Proverbs 25:23 The north wind driveth away rain: so doth an angry countenance a backbiting tongue.

The Psalmist David encourages laying this sin aside by telling us that those who do not do it will abide in the Lordís holy hill. Psalm 15:1-3 LORD, who shall abide in thy tabernacle? who shall dwell in thy holy hill? 2 He that walketh uprightly, and worketh righteousness, and speaketh the truth in his heart. 3 He that backbiteth not with his tongue, nor doeth evil to his neighbour, nor taketh up a reproach against his neighbour.

David warned that he would cut off from the Land those who were guilty of backbiting. Psalm 101:5-8 Whoso privily slandereth his neighbour, him will I cut off: him that hath an high look and a proud heart will not I suffer. 6 Mine eyes shall be upon the faithful of the land, that they may dwell with me: he that walketh in a perfect way, he shall serve me. 7 He that worketh deceit shall not dwell within my house: he that telleth lies shall not tarry in my sight. 8 I will early destroy all the wicked of the land; that I may cut off all wicked doers from the city of the LORD.

In listing the sins of men, Paul included backbiting. Romans 1:28-31 And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient; 29 Being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers, 30 Backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, 31 Without understanding, covenantbreakers, without natural affection, implacable, unmerciful:

Paul was fearful that some of the Corinthian congregation might be guilty of this sin. 2 Corinthians 12:20 For I fear, lest, when I come, I shall not find you such as I would, and that I shall be found unto you such as ye would not: lest there be debates, envyings, wraths, strifes, backbitings, whisperings, swellings, tumults:

Instances of backbiting.

Potipharís wife against Joseph. Genesis 39:7 And it came to pass after these things, that his master's wife cast her eyes upon Joseph; and she said, Lie with me.

Some accused Paul of teaching things he did not teach in an effort to hurt his reputation and diminish his influence. Romans 3:8 And not rather, (as we be slanderously reported, and as some affirm that we say,) Let us do evil, that good may come? whose damnation is just.

The high priest and leading Jews against Paul. Acts 25:1-3 Now when Festus was come into the province, after three days he ascended from Caesarea to Jerusalem. 2 Then the high priest and the chief of the Jews informed him against Paul, and besought him, 3 And desired favour against him, that he would send for him to Jerusalem, laying wait in the way to kill him.

There is probably more said in the Bible about this sin than any of the others named in this list. It is no wonder that James had so much warning about the tongue, the instrument used in evil speaking. James 3:1-10 My brethren, be not many masters, knowing that we shall receive the greater condemnation. 2 For in many things we offend all. If any man offend not in word, the same [is] a perfect man, [and] able also to bridle the whole body. 3 Behold, we put bits in the horses' mouths, that they may obey us; and we turn about their whole body. 4 Behold also the ships, which though [they be] so great, and [are] driven of fierce winds, yet are they turned about with a very small helm, whithersoever the governor listeth. 5 Even so the tongue is a little member, and boasteth great things. Behold, how great a matter a little fire kindleth! 6 And the tongue [is] a fire, a world of iniquity: so is the tongue among our members, that it defileth the whole body, and setteth on fire the course of nature; and it is set on fire of hell. 7 For every kind of beasts, and of birds, and of serpents, and of things in the sea, is tamed, and hath been tamed of mankind: 8 But the tongue can no man tame; [it is] an unruly evil, full of deadly poison. 9 Therewith bless we God, even the Father; and therewith curse we men, which are made after the similitude of God. 10 Out of the same mouth proceedeth blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not so to be.

CONC: These sins have no place in the life of the true Pilgrim. We have been redeemed by the blood and regenerated by the word and ought to live as new creatures in Christ Jesus and not walk as the world walks in these bitter sins.

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