Suffering For Righteousness Part 2

Text:I Peter 3:13-ff.

Last week we discussed the scriptural idea of suffering for righteousness sake.  Let me say this before we go any further, suffering for righteousness sake is different than being a victim of violence or even when one demeans or insults your character as in Matthew 5:38, 39.  May we pray and seek God’s direction when it comes to when and how to fight violence and when to suffer for righteousness sake.  For this discussion we are talking about suffering for sake of Christ.

I Peter 3:14 teaches us that when we suffer, we will be happy if we endure.  This means fortunate or well and carries with it the blessing of the Father.  If we sanctify the Lord and venerate God instead of fear, we have a good conscience towards God.  Paul is a good example of this, Act 24:10-19.  Paul is on trial against lies and accusations.  Paul asks Felix to look at the facts that are but he makes no apology for believing scripture and serving the Lord as Truth demands.  When we stand on Truth unashamedly we have a good conscience towards God.  Baptism is also an act that gives us a good conscience towards God, I Peter 3:21.  It does not wash away the filth of the flesh but is an act of obedience.  May we live with a clear conscience towards the Lord!

Suffering for Righteousness sake also makes evil doers ashamed.  This means to confound those that accuse God’s people.  They may or may not feel remorse or shame but that is a different word.   We are called to overcome evil with good, Rom. 12:21.  When we obey the Lord and do good, there is great power and the Lord is glorified.  Anyone can give in to the flesh and do evil but it takes a strong Christian to stand with the Lord and not give in to the ways and attractions of this world.  May we exhibit the fruit of the Spirit, Gal. 5:22.  

Jesus Christ is of course the perfect example of suffering for the Father.  The just for the unjust, I Pet. 1:17-21.  Christ was willing to obey the Father all the way to the death of the cross.  He was put to death by sin and given life by the Spirit. May we crucify the flesh and live according to the Spirit in the full power of Christ.

Recent Posts