Our Magnificent Savior
Pastor David L. Brown, Ph.D.
Sermon Delivered 11/23/03
1 Peter 2:21-25 "For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps: 22 Who did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth: 23 Who, when he was reviled, reviled not again; when he suffered, he threatened not; but committed himself to him that judgeth righteously: 24 Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed. 25 For ye were as sheep going astray; but are now returned unto the Shepherd and Bishop of your souls."
Putting Our Text In Context
I Peter 2 primarily focus on exhortations, in general, to live a holy life; and, in particular, to be obedience to superiors. The last section of the chapter the focus on Christ, our magnificent Savior. In this message we are going to consider… 1) Our Suffering Savior 2) Our Sinless Savior 3) Our Submissive Savior 4) Our Sacrificial Savior 5) Our Sufficient Savior
Years ago, Linda and I serve short term with a ministry in Haiti. It was a time suffering and refining for us. There were experiences I encounter there that are forever etched in my mind, even though it was more than 30 years ago. One of the most agonizing was getting dysentery. I was so sick that there was a time when I thought I might die. But, I suffered with dysentery because of my own bad choices.
That is not the reason Christ suffered. He did NOT suffer because of bad choices. He suffered voluntarily, not for himself, but for us. We read, "For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps:" 1 Peter 2:21. Christ suffered for us; In fact, in our place. Peter reminds the Christians that he was writing to, that Christ suffered unjustly. He was the just one, but he chose to die on behalf of the unjust (sinners). We read in 1 Peter 3:18 "For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit:"
You do not have to read between the lines see that Jesus Christ suffered for us! Why? That he might bring us to God. You see, because we are sinners, we are separated from God (Isaiah 59:2). Only by accepting Jesus Christ as your Savior and His sacrifice (propitiation) for our sins, can we have a relationship with God.
Is Jesus Christ your Savior? If not, I would urge you to repent of your sins and receive Him today. Yet, if you do know Christ as your Savior, our Lord calls us to us to "follow His steps." That means, we are to be willing live for Christ, even to the point of suffering for Him!
The brings me to the second point relating to our magnificent Savior…
Turn to verse 22. "Who did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth." Every person who has ever lived was (or is) a sinner (Romans 3:10 & 23). That is, every person except Jesus Christ. He was tempted in every way, yet he did not sin. Turn to Hebrews 4:15 "For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin." I like the way one writer put it: "In his divinity Christ was not able to sin; in his humanity He was able not to sin."
Many in this decade are trying to rob Christ of his sinlessness. One popular example is the book The DaVinci Code and another is Bloodline of the Holy Grail: The Hidden Lineage of Jesus Revealed. They slander our sinless Savior. God will deal with them! I reject the diabolical efforts of sinful men to sully my spotless Savior. I believe what Paul wrote to the Corinthians "For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him." 2 Corinthians 5:21 We must not forget what John wrote: "And ye know that he was manifested to take away our sins; and in him is no sin." 1 John 3:5
Now we come to the third point…
"Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree…" 24a
The crucifixion of Christ on Calvary was the culmination the mission that God the father sent Him to do. We read in 1 John 4:14 "And we have seen and do testify that the Father sent the Son to be the Saviour of the world." But, you must realize what it cost Christ to be obedient or submissive to His father’s will. As the song says, "He left the splendors of Heaven knowing his destiny, was the lonely hill of Golgotha, where he laid down His life for me." Jesus said, "My meat is to do the will of him that sent me, and to finish his work." John 4:34
Our magnificent, submissive Savior chose to do the will of his Father, much to our benefit. There are two verses that explain why. Philippians 2:8 "And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross." Hebrews 5:8-9 "Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered; 9 And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him;"
Christ is the author of eternal Salvation. What a magnificent Savior. Therefore, if we take our Savior and His provision of Salvation seriously we "should live unto righteousness" v.24, that is, live righteously. Next, we need to consider…
"Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed." v.24
Have you ever heard the phrase "flying by the seat of your pants?" The phrase means improvising as you go along. I don’t like doing things that way. I like to know, and plan for, all the ins and outs of situations I am going to face. Sometimes that just is not possible. However, nothing takes God and His Christ by surprise. Salvation’s purpose and plan was planned before the world began (see 2 Timothy 1:9). The sacrifice of the Savior was a major part of God’s plan. We see it prophetically foretold in Isaiah 53:5-6, 11-12 "But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed. 6 All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the LORD hath laid on him the iniquity of us all. 11 He shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied: by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities. 12 Therefore will I divide him a portion with the great, and he shall divide the spoil with the strong; because he hath poured out his soul unto death: and he was numbered with the transgressors; and he bare the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors."
Know this, there is only one divinely designed means of Salvation and that is through Jesus Christ and Him alone. It is only the blood sacrifice of Christ that God is satisfied with. If you are trusting in anything else you are in BIG trouble.
Finally, we come the last point relating to our magnificent Savior…
"For ye were as sheep going astray; but are now returned unto the Shepherd and Bishop of your souls." v. 25
Christ is sufficient to take away our sins -- Hebrews 9:11-12 "But Christ being come an high priest of good things to come, by a greater and more perfect tabernacle, not made with hands, that is to say, not of this building; 12 Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us."
Christ is sufficient to us an abundant life -- John 10:10 "The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly."
Christ is sufficient insure eternal life for all who believe -- 2 Timothy 1:12 "For the which cause I also suffer these things: nevertheless I am not ashamed: for I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I have committed unto him against that day."
Is he your Savior? If he
is, we should follow in his steps and live righteously.