Cecil Hutson Sermon Archive
November 11, 2001 PM
HOW TO LOVE LIFE
1 Pet 3:10-12
INTRO: So often I have had friends or family members say of one\onw who has recently died, Oh, how he loved life. We think of that expression as suggesting zest for life, an enjoyment of all that life holds. People who love life are a delight to behold. Peter, however, looks at loving life from the viewpoint of inspiration. Materialistic concerns, therefore, did not enter into Peters observations. The very simple rules he gives for how to love life are completely practicable. There are three essential elements in Peters advice.
I. BE CAREFUL WHAT YOU SAY 3:10
A. Certain kinds of tongue uses must be stopped!
1. refrain means to cease
2. there are some worldly uses of the tongue which have no place in Christians life (Jas 1:26)
B. the problem of evil speaking
1. this encompasses speech which harms another
2. gossip, slander, cutting gibes, harsh rejoinders...either intentionally or carelessly spoken
3. Eph 4:31,32a evil speakings are the opposite of kindness (Prov 12:18a)
4. 1 Tim 5:13 this must cease...if you want to love and enjoy life
5. such speech alienates you from otherseven your friends
C. The problem of deceit (lying)
1. the intention of deceiving others
2. Eph 4:24,25 & Col 3:9 old & new natures contrasted
3. lying always comes home to roost...not only does it deceive another, but it also will expose the liar and become a great embarrassment to him (Prov 19:5)
D. In short, the tongue must be controlled!
1. Mt 12:34,35 our tongue uses indicate our heart condition
2. Prov 21:23 nothing could be more true!
3. want to enjoy life? be careful of your tongue
II. BE CAREFUL WHAT YOU DO 3:11a
A. Lovers of life must turn away from evil
1. turn away speaks of a deliberate act of will
2. it also speaks of something possible if desired
3. vital principle of repenting injects here...or as Jesus put it in an actual situationJno 8:11
4. time and again N.T. stresses old life is behind, past
B. But there is a positive aspect...and do good
1. obviously, something must fill the void
2. notice Lk 11:23-26 being with Christ is much more than just saying, I wont be with the Devil
3. notice Titus 2:7,8 (good associates with doctrine, etc.); 2:14 (good associates with total quality of life); 3:1,2 (good associates with civil, social activity); 3:8 (good associates with what is good & profitable to othersbenevolence); 3:14 (good associates with honorable occupation
4. with the teaching/example of Jesus no one should have any difficulty doing good
III. BE CAREFUL ABOUT YOUR THINKING 3:11b
A. What does seeking peace have to do with thinking?
1. a person can only walk in peace who is at peace in his own mind
2. or Prov 23:7a mind filled with turmoil, guilt, anger cannot produce a life of peace!
3. thus, Phil 4:6-8 some good thinking subjects
B. If God controls our minds, He controls our lives
1. meditation of His word, prayer, wholesome activity...all are part of His gaining & keeping control
2. again, it just depends so much on what we want
3. and if we want true peace, we must discipline our minds along certain lines as a first (and continuing) step
IV. BLESSING AND WARNING 3:12
A. Following Gods advice for loving life...
1. we have assurance of Gods interest & attentiveness
2. what we have does not much interest Himbut what we are is His concern
B. Should you choose to love life on the worlds terms...
1. you have lost contact with God!
2. and you can be sure that your eternal life will be most unpleasant
CLOSE: People seek happiness, peace, success in so many places. Theyre willing to pay big money for schemes, advice and counsel. But the sweet Bible gives us free, simple, workable ways of filling our needs.
Cecil A. Hutson
God's Plan of Salvation
You must hear the gospel and then understand and recognize that you are lost without Jesus Christ no matter who you are and no matter what your background is. The Bible tells us that “all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.” (Romans 3:23) Before you can be saved, you must understand that you are lost and that the only way to be saved is by obedience to the gospel of Jesus Christ. (2 Thessalonians 1:8) Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” (John 14:6) “Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.” (Acts 4:12)
You must believe and have faith in God because “without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.” (Hebrews 11:6) But neither belief alone nor faith alone is sufficient to save. (James 2:19; James 2:24; Matthew 7:21)
You must repent of your sins. (Acts 3:19) But repentance alone is not enough. The so-called “Sinner’s Prayer” that you hear so much about today from denominational preachers does not appear anywhere in the Bible. Indeed, nowhere in the Bible was anyone ever told to pray the “Sinner’s Prayer” to be saved. By contrast, there are numerous examples showing that prayer alone does not save. Saul, for example, prayed following his meeting with Jesus on the road to Damascus (Acts 9:11), but Saul was still in his sins when Ananias met him three days later (Acts 22:16). Cornelius prayed to God always, and yet there was something else he needed to do to be saved (Acts 10:2, 6, 33, 48). If prayer alone did not save Saul or Cornelius, prayer alone will not save you. You must obey the gospel. (2 Thess. 1:8)
You must confess that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. (Romans 10:9-10) Note that you do NOT need to make Jesus “Lord of your life.” Why? Because Jesus is already Lord of your life whether or not you have obeyed his gospel. Indeed, we obey him, not to make him Lord, but because he already is Lord. (Acts 2:36) Also, no one in the Bible was ever told to just “accept Jesus as your personal savior.” We must confess that Jesus is the Son of God, but, as with faith and repentance, confession alone does not save. (Matthew 7:21)
Having believed, repented, and confessed that Jesus is the Son of God, you must be baptized for the remission of your sins. (Acts 2:38) It is at this point (and not before) that your sins are forgiven. (Acts 22:16) It is impossible to proclaim the gospel of Jesus Christ without teaching the absolute necessity of baptism for salvation. (Acts 8:35-36; Romans 6:3-4; 1 Peter 3:21) Anyone who responds to the question in Acts 2:37 with an answer that contradicts Acts 2:38 is NOT proclaiming the gospel of Jesus Christ!
Once you are saved, God adds you to his church and writes your name in the Book of Life. (Acts 2:47; Philippians 4:3) To continue in God’s grace, you must continue to serve God faithfully until death. Unless they remain faithful, those who are in God’s grace will fall from grace, and those whose names are in the Book of Life will have their names blotted out of that book. (Revelation 2:10; Revelation 3:5; Galatians 5:4)