Sermon Prepared by James McCullen
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If You Call God Your Father
1 Pet 1:17-21 (NAS)

17 And if you address as Father the One who impartially judges according to each man's work, conduct yourselves in fear during the time of your stay {upon earth} 18 knowing that you were not redeemed with perishable things like silver or gold from your futile way of life inherited from your forefathers, 19 but with precious blood, as of a lamb unblemished and spotless, {the blood} of Christ. 20 For He was foreknown before the foundation of the world, but has appeared in these last times for the sake of you 21 who through Him are believers in God, who raised Him from the dead and gave Him glory, so that your faith and hope are in God.

Introduction
Simon Peter states these words in the text ". . . if you address as Father . . . ", he is speaking of God. He then goes on to relate some factors of Christian conduct, because a person calls God their father.

I am reminded of the often told story of Alexander the great finding one of his solders retreating from battle. He ask him what his name was and the boy said "Alexander". The general said "change your name or change your conduct."

Today if we name God as our Father we should have conduct that agrees with our profession. If we say God is our Father , and we are Christians we need to live in the reality of that confession.
 
 

1.    If You Call God Your Father . . Realize He Rules. v 17


17 And if you address as Father the One who impartially judges according to each man's work, conduct yourselves in fear during the time of your stay {upon earth}

A.    Realize He Rules . . Impartially. v 17 a
        " And if you address as Father the One who impartially judges . . . "

            1.    Impartial In our . . Conversion.
 

B.    Realize He Rules . . Insightfully. v 17 b

            1.    Insightful of our . . Conduct.

Illustration
Some seem to think our Lord said, "You are the sugar of the earth," meaning that gentleness and winsomeness without curativeness is the ideal of the Christian.
(Oswald Chambers (1874-1917)}

A Christian is salt, and salt is the most concentrated thing known. Salt preserves wholesomeness and prevents decay. It is a disadvantage to be salt. Think of the action of salt on a wound. If you get salt into a wound, it hurts, and when God's children are amongst those who are "raw" toward God, their presence hurts. The man who is wrong with God is like an open wound, and when "salt" gets in, it causes annoyance and distress and he is spiteful and bitter. The disciples of Jesus preserve society from corruption; the "salt" causes excessive irritation which spells persecution for the saint.   Oswald Chambers (1874-1917)

        2 Insightful of our . . Life Span.

Illustration
Roy Baugh's brother died Friday. His wife told me we laid down for an afternoon nap and he never woke up. Death many times comes as a surprise.

God knows your life span. He knows how and what your life is doing for the kingdom. Do you call God your Father? Do you obey Him?

Application

Mal 1:6 "'A son honors {his} father, and a servant his master. Then if I am a father, where is My honor? And if I am a master, where is My respect?' says the LORD of hosts to you, . . . "

Luke 6:46

46 "And why do you call Me, 'Lord, Lord,' and do not do what I say? (NAS)

If You Call God Your Father . . Realize He Rules.
 
 

2. If You Call God Your Father . . Realize He Redeems. v 18-20


A.    Realize What God Does Not Use To Redeem. v 18

            1.    He Does Not Use Perishable Things. v 18
18 knowing that you were not redeemed with perishable things like silver or gold from your futile way of life inherited from your forefathers,

        1.    Silver or Gold.
        2.    Inheritance form Our Forefathers.

Illustration #1
My 1 year old grandson has just started to walk. The other night after church Mom, Dad, and the other children were working with him to get him to walk. He was dong good, and everybody clapped for him.

The next day my daughter was in the Kitchen where she could see Stephen but he couldn't see her. He took off walking, and then look to see if any body was going to clap. No one else was there so he clapped for himself.

Some one may applaud our conduct. God is not impressed

Illustration #2
Kathryn Marshall tells this experience she had, as she was awakened in the middle of the night with the words God has no grandchildren. She sat up in bed trying to figure out what that meant, and did not get any answer. She said "Lord I need sleep if you will allow me to go back to sleep I will search that thought in the morning.

In the morning she turned began to reflect on the words God has no grandchildren. She turned to John 1:12 and read "But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, {even} to those who believe in His name," Then it hit her; God only has children NOT GRANDCHILDREN.
 

B. Realize What God Does Use To Redeem. v 19-20

        1.    God Redeems with that which is . .Precious. v 19
19 but with precious blood, as of a lamb unblemished and spotless, {the blood} of Christ.

            1.    Precious Blood.
                       a.    Unblemished blood.       Heb 4:15
                       b.    Spotless Blood.             2 Cor 5:21

        2.    God Redeems with that which is . . Preeminent. v 20
20 For He was foreknown before the foundation of the world, but has appeared in these last times for the sake of you

                a.    Preeminent . . Plan. v 20 a
                b.    Preeminent . . Person. v 20 b

C.    Realize Who Does God Redeems? v 21 a

           1.    God Redeems Believers. v 21 a
                    ". . . who through Him are believers in God, . . . "

Illustration
The great English preacher Charles Haddon Spurgeon told of a man who had been sentenced to death by a Spanish court. Because he was an American citizen but also of English birth, the consuls of both countries decided to intervene. They declared that the authorities of Spain had no right to take his life, but their protests went unheeded.

Finally, they deliberately wrapped the prisoner in their flags -- the Stars and Stripes and the Union Jack. Defying the executioner, they issued this warning: "Fire if you dare! But if you do, you will bring the powers of two great nations upon you!" There stood the condemned. But the rifleman would not shoot. Protected by those flags and the governments they represented, the man was invulnerable.

Application Our redemption in Christ covers our sins with Precious Blood.

If you call God your Father remember how He Redeemed You.
 
 



3. If You Call God Your Father . . Realize
He Resurrects. v 21

21 who through Him are believers in God, who raised Him from the dead and gave Him glory, so that your faith and hope are in God. (NAS)

Realize the . . Reality of the Resurrection. v 21 a

21 who through Him are believers in God, who raised Him from the dead and gave Him glory,

The Resurrection is stated as Fact.

Simon saw the Resurrected Lord.

Mind set changed because of the Resurrection.

He had gone back to fishing for fish.

B. Realize the . . Reason of the Resurrection. v 21 b

To Give us Faith and Hope.

We Serve a risen Savior.

He Will Resurrect His Own.
 
 

Illustration Topic: Resurrection Index: 2407-2416 Title: Beyond the Cross

Every year thousands of people climb a mountain in the Italian Alps, passing the "stations of the cross" to stand at an outdoor crucifix. One tourist noticed a little trail that led beyond the cross. He fought through the rough thicket and, to his surprise, came upon another shrine, a shrine that symbolized the empty tomb. It was neglected. The brush had grown up around it. Almost everyone had gone as far as they cross, but there they stopped.

Far too many have gotten to the cross and have known the despair and the heartbreak. Far too few have moved beyond the cross to find the real message of Easter. That is the message of the empty tomb. Lavon Brown
 
 

Conclusion

Topic: Resurrection Index: 2407-2416 Title: Father at the Game

Some years ago Columbia University had a great football coach by the name of Lou Little. One day Lou had a boy try out for the varsity team who wasn't really very good. But Lou noticed that there was something unique about him--while he wasn't nearly good enough to make the team, he had such irrepressible spirit and contagious enthusiasm that Lou thought, This boy would be a great inspiration on the bench. He'll never be able to play, but I'll leave him on the team to encourage the others.
 
 
 
 
 
 

As the season went on, Lou began to develop a tremendous admiration and love for this boy. One of the things that especially impressed him was the manner with which the boy obviously cared for his father. Whenever the father would come for a visit to the campus the boy and his father would always be seen walking together, arm in arm, an obvious indication of an exceptional bond of love between them. They could always be seen on Sunday going to and from the university chapel. It was obvious that theirs was a deep and mutually shared Christian faith.

Then, one day, a telephone call came to Coach Little. He was informed that the boy's father had just died--would he be the one to tell the boy? With a heavy heart Lou informed the boy of his father's death, and he immediately left to go home for the funeral.

A few days later the boy returned to the campus, only two days before the biggest game of the season. Lou went to him and said, "Is there anything I can do for you? Anything at all?" And to the coach's astonishment the boy said, "Let me start the game on Saturday!" Lou was taken aback. He thought, I can't let him start--he's not good enough. But he remembered his promise to help and said, "All right--you can start the game," but he thought to himself, I'll leave him in for a few plays and then take him out.

The day of the big game arrived. To everyone's surprise the coach started this boy who had never played in a game all season. But imagine even the coach's surprise when, on the very first play from scrimmage, that boy was the one who single--handedly made a tackle that threw the opposing team for a loss. The boy went on to play inspired football play after play. In fact, he played so exceptionally that Lou left him in for the entire game; the boy led his team to victory and he was voted the outstanding player of the game.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

When the game was finally over Lou approached the boy and said, "Son, what got into you today?" And the boy replied, "You remember when my father would visit me here at school and we would spend a lot of time together walking arm in arm around the campus? My father and I shared a secret that nobody around here knew anything about. You see, my father was blind--and today was the first time he ever saw me play!"

It is because of resurrection vision that we are able to "play above our heads" in the game of life and "see" the purposes and power and love of God.
 
 

Do You Call God Your Father? Do You Cry Out Abba Father?

If You Call God Your Father . . Realize He Rules.

If You Call God Your Father . . Realize He Redeems.

If You Call God Your Father . . Realize He Resurrects.