1 Peter 4:12-19 – Suffering as Trial, Fellowship, and Blessedness

September 6, 2015

This is the third movement of the letter. In the first Peter stressed the identity of believers as God’s chosen people whom God has loved from the foundation of the world (1 Peter 1:13-2:10). In the second Peter encouraged believers to live out that identity despite their difficult circumstances as witnesses to the grace of […]

1 Peter 4:1-6 — They Think It Strange, But Follow Christ

August 21, 2015

     1 Peter 3:18a: Christ suffered for sins.             1 Peter 4:1a: Christ suffered in the flesh 1 Peter 4:1 resumes the primary topic: the suffering of Christ provides a model for living in a hostile environment. 1 Peter 3:18-22 underscores the victory of Christ over suffering and his enthronement over the powers and authorities, […]

1 Peter 3:13-17 — When Suffering Comes

August 1, 2015

In 1 Peter 2:11-3:12 Peter addressed how followers of Jesus live as “aliens and exiles” within a Roman culture which often abused others under its authority. In 1 Peter 3:13-4:11, he turns his attention to how Christians suffer faithfully and with hope in that same culture. In both sections, “doing good” is the primary Christian […]

5 Anchors for the Soul during the Storms of Life

July 30, 2015

This is a presentation of the Five Anchors for the Soul in the Storms of Life at the Central Church of Christ in Athens, AL on July 8, 2015. Here God loves, God listens, God understands, God reigns, and God wins.

1 Peter 3:8-12 — A Community Under Threat But Bound Together in the Fear of the Lord

July 27, 2015

As aliens and exiles, abstain from unhealthy desires and live among the nations as people who “do good” so that everyone may see your good life and glorify God (1 Peter 2:11-12). Consequently: Imperial residents, submit to political authority. Slaves, submit to your masters. Follow the model of Jesus in his suffering. Wives, submit to […]

1 Peter 2:21-25: Jesus as Model for Submission

July 17, 2015

Imperial residents, submit to the empire. Slaves, submit to your masters. This submission, Peter tells us, is grounded in our vocation or calling. We are called into a life of submission because Jesus is our model (pattern, example). Our vocational mission as the people of God is grounded in the life of Jesus as the […]

1 Peter 1:6-9 — Joy in the Midst of Suffering

May 31, 2015

“Joy” and “suffering” are not two words that often belong in the same sentence, much less a blog title. Yet, this is exactly the case as Peter digresses from doxology (begun in 1 Peter 1:3) to commentary on his reader’s present circumstances (1 Peter 1:6-9). 1 Peter 1:3-12 is a single sentence in the Greek […]

Five Lectures on the Book of Job: Midwest Preachers’ Retreat (2014)

May 28, 2015

In September 2014, I was honored to present some material on the book of Job to a group of dedicated and devout servants in the church at the Midwest Preachers’ Retreat in Wisconsin.  Here are the audio links to those presentations. 1.  The Text of Job as Dramatic Lament: The Dialogical Structure of the Book […]

When Friends Try to Help….On the Death of My Son

May 21, 2015

May 21 is an anniversary date for me. Joshua died on that day in 2001. Many friends helped. Mark and Margo Black were there, Rubel and Myra Shelly were there, Mike Cope was there a few days before as well as John York, and we were surrounded by many others (including my Woodmont Hills Bible […]

The Empathetic God

December 27, 2014

God became flesh. God became human. Incarnation is the act through which the Creator experiences the creation as a creature. This is both the uniqueness and mystery of the Christian faith. The one who was with God in the beginning and was God from the beginning became human. The same one through whom the cosmos […]