I Peter 2:9-25




Today, I want to talk about showing forth the praises of God.

And I want to deal with three questions:


          1. Why should we show forth the praises of. God?

          2. How do we show forth the praises of God?

  And 3. What did Jesus do to show forth the praises of God?



The first question was why should we show forth the praises of God?

We should show forth the praises of God because that's our purpose.



That's why we exist.

Peter used four Old Testament terms to explain this.



He said the Church is a chosen generation;

A royal priesthood;



A holy nation;

And a peculiar people.



The early Church was made up of Jews.

They understood what Peter was saying.



But we didn’t grow up in the Jewish religion.

So we need an explanation.



1st---We are a chosen generation.

Concerning Israel, God said, in the Old Testament, “This people have I        

formed for myself ; “



“That they shall show forth my praise” (Isa. 43:21).

God chose the Jews to show forth His praise.



He wanted them to be His witnesses in the world.

But the Jews failed.



They became lukewarm;

Listened to false teachings;



Corrupted their religion;

And rejected their Messiah.



They came to the point where it was impossible for them to show the world  

what God is like.

So Peter was saying, “God has chosen the Church to do what He asked the

Jews to do.”



He has chosen us to be His witnesses in the world.

That’s our task;



To reveal the love of God, the mercy of God, the righteousness of God, the

judgment of God;

To reveal what God is like.



2nd---We are a royal priesthood.

This time, Peter was referring to the fact that God chose every individual Jew         

to be a priest.

But all of them failed.

Then, God chose the tribe of Levi to be priests;



But the tribe of Levi failed.

Now, God has chosen us to be priests.



But Peter was saying we are more than ordinary priests.

We are a royal priesthood.



We serve a King.

He is the King of kings.



And we are priests who belong to the King of kings.

We may not consider ourselves royalty.



And we may not consider ourselves priests.

But God considers us a royal priesthood.



The Bible even says, “If we suffer with Him, we will reign with Him”

(II Tim. 2:12).

It says, “God has made us kings and priests and we shall reign on earth”      

(Rev. 5:10).



It says, “We shall be priests of God and Christ and shall reign with Him a     

thousand years” (Rev. 20:6).

And it mentions at least five crowns that we can win.



3rd---We are a holy nation.

This does not mean that Israel was good because Israel wasn’t good.



It means that the nation was a holy nation in the sense that it was chosen to   

separate itself from heathen practices.

The nation was chosen to dedicate itself to serving God.



The Church is one nation.

No matter what our nationality, or race, or citizenship,



We are just one nation.

We live in different lands.



We have different Governments.

We are different colors.



But we are just one nation.

And, even though we are sinners, we are called to serve God.



And our calling is a holy calling.

4th---We are a peculiar people.



In the Old Testament God called Israel, "A peculiar treasure above all  

people” (Ex. 19:5).

But Israel failed.



Now, we are that peculiar treasure above all people.

Jesus revealed this in the parable about The Pearl of Great Price.



He said, “The kingdom of heaven is like unto a merchant man, seeking godly          


“Who, when he had found one pearl of great price, went and sold all that he

had, and bought it” (Matt. 13:45, 46).


Jesus left the glories of heaven;

Came to this earth;



Took our sin in His own body;

Shed His own blood;



And died on a cross to redeem us for God.

That makes us a peculiar people in God's sight.



God's Son died in our place.

We’re special.



God loves us.

His Son died for us.



The second question was how do we show forth the praises of God?

Our text lists seven ways.



1st---We show forth the praises of God by abstaining from fleshly lusts.

Does Peter say, “Praise God by singing hymns?”



“Praise God by raising our hands?”

“Praise God by attending Church?”




But don't misunderstand me.



We are told to do these things in other Scriptures.

But here Peter is saying praising God is more than singing hymns, raising our          

hands, and attending Church.

Praising God also involves not doing certain things.

It's abstaining from fleshly lusts, hatred, wrath, strife, envy, etc.



It's watching our behavior.

Avoiding immorality;



Not arguing;

Not hating;



Not grumbling;

Or criticizing;



Not taking on the habits and attitudes of the world.

There was a time when the disciples were discussing which of them would be         

the greatest in the kingdom.



Jesus said, “He that is least among you all, the same shall be great”

(Matt. 18:3; Luke 9:46).

We need to understand this.



It's the path to a higher life.

The path to greatness in God's kingdom is the path of self-denial;



The path of conciliation;

The path of humility.



We have to put aside our own desires.

And make God's will our will.




When we can stop doing what we want to do and start doing what God wants        

us to do,

We’re headed down the path to greatness.



2nd---We show forth the praises of God by having our conversation honest.

We shouldn’t mislead people;



Not misrepresent things.

Not use half-truths;



Not use gross exaggerations.

Truth and honesty are of God.



Lies and dishonesty are of the Devil.

I have to admit that I find some of these political debates frustrating.



I cannot see how we can solve our problems, it the truth doesn’t matter.

3rd---We show forth the praises of God by submitting ourselves to every       

ordinance of man.



Keep the law.

And notice Peter says every law.



The only exception is when the laws of man conflict with the laws of God.

If men pass laws to outlaw the true worship of God,



To require idol worship,

To require us to take the Mark of the Beast, etc.




Then, “We ought to obey God rather than men.”

But God knows that we need laws.



Without laws criminals rule.

Anarchy reigns.



So we have to have laws.

We have to have people to enforce the laws.



And we have to keep the laws.

One of my commentaries says, “When laws are made the Christian respects

and observes them;”



“When taxes are levied, the Christian pays them;”

“When service is required, the Christian renders it” (Pulpit vol. 22 Peter pg. 99).



Peter also said submit to the governors “as unto them that are sent by Him for        

the punishment of evil doers and for the praise of them that do well.”

Don't just keep the national laws of Kings and Presidents.



Also keep the local laws of governors and mayors.

Now, before we leave this, Peter reminds us that we are free.



We are free from keeping the laws as far as salvation is concerned.

Our salvation doesn’t depend upon our being law-abiding citizens.



But Peter is saying, “Don't use your liberty as a cloak for maliciousness.”

Don't use your freedom as an excuse to sin.



We can be saved without keeping every law.

But God hasn’t given us the right to do anything we want to do.



Just about every Tuesday I go get Lay Leader.

And we go visiting.



There's a place on Highway 54 coming out of Trenton where the speed limit  

is 30 mph.

And I have a tendency to drive about 40-45 mph.



Several times, my Lay Leader has said you need to slow down in here.

He's right.



I appreciate that.

But this is the point.



My speeding won't keep me out of heaven.

But God hasn’t given me the right to drive at any speed I want to.



That speed limit is there.

And I’m suppose to obey the law.



4th---We show forth the praises of God by honoring all people.

We have a tendency to honor SOME people.



But not All people;

A tendency to honor people that we think are important;



People with power, big jobs and lots of money.

But we don't usually honor the down and out, alcoholics, drug addicts, etc/

This is not saying that we should give the same amount of honor to everyone.

But it is saying that we should honor everyone.



I can give you three reasons for that:

One---all people were created by God.



Two---all people were created in the image of God.

And three---Jesus died for all people.



He died for the sins of the world.

So no matter what their estate in life we should be kind to all people.



I have read that if a Jew sees a piece of paper lying on the ground, he won’t  

step on it because it might have the name of God on it.

Some people throw away their pennies.



I read about a rich man who picked up every penny he saw.

Someone asked, “With all your money, why do you pick up a penny?”



He replied, “It has IN GOD WE TRUST on it.”

Every time I see a coin, it reminds me of God.



I owe everything I have and am to God.

Every person was created by God it would be wrong to mistreat them.



5th---We show forth the praises of God by loving the brotherhood.

Did you catch the change in words?



Honor all people.

LOVE the brotherhood.

Honor non-Christians.

LOVE Christians.



We have a responsibility to all people.

But we have a greater responsibility to each other.



6th---We show forth the praises of God by fearing God.

Respect for God is important.



We show respect by attending Church;








Studying His Word;

Witnessing, etc.



If we are going to praise God, we have to respect Him.

And the only way we can respect Him is to obey Him.



7th---We show forth the praises of God by being subject to our masters.

In this case, our masters are our bosses.



We should be good employees.

It's a privilege to have a job;



To be able to work;

To be able to earn a living.


Every year millions of Mexicans risk their life to sneak into this country.

Some have bad intentions.



But most just want a job.

Most just want to work so they can provide a better opportunity for their wife        

and children.



I'm thankful that I live in a country that provides me with the opportunity to   


My job is a blessing from God.



And I owe it to God to be a good employee.

But notice something else.



Peter said be subject to our bosses.

Then, he added, “Not only to the good and gentle but also to the forward.”



Some bosses are good and gentle.

And some bosses are hard and unreasonable.



If we have a bad boss, we may think God ought to do something about it.

And He might.



But God says be subject to your boss even if he is bad.

The exception would be if our boss asked us to do things that dishonor God.



Then, we should not do as we are told.

Next, Peter says, “This is thankworthy, if a man for conscience toward God

endure grief, suffering wrongfully.”



It praises God when we are unjustly treated at work.

And we continue to be a good employee.



Most of us want to strike out when we are unjustly treated.

But it is a holy thin, if we are unjustly treated and we endure for God's glory.



The third question was, What did Jesus do that showed forth the praises of  


Peter said, “Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example.”



“Christ did no sin.”

“But when Christ was reviled, He reviled not again.”



“When Christ suffered, He threatened NOT.”

Jesus did no sin.



But look what He put up with.

He suffered more ridicule and ill treatment,



More injustice and cruelty than we will ever be asked to take.

But He did not complain;



Get mad;

Or threaten anyone.



He took the mistreatment.

And forgave those who did it.



Think about it.

Jesus made Himself the Servant of God.

He did it to redeem people God created and loved.

He never considered His own honor;



Never tried to assert His own power;

Never tried to vindicate Himself.



He yielded His whole life to God.

He did it so God could accomplish His work through Him.



Concerning Jesus, Peter said, “He is the Shepherd and the Bishop of our      


A Shepherd leads His sheep;



Guards His sheep;

Provides for His sheep.



A Bishop has authority over his people.

He is the overseer of His people.



And Peter is saying, “Let Jesus lead you.”

He will take care of you.



He has authority over you.

It was a terrible time in Israel.



Revolution was in the air.

No one knew who to trust.



Soldiers rode their horses and chariots with weapons drawn.

Jehu was in Christ.

His sword was out and ready to draw blood.

He encountered the prophet Jehonadab (II Kings 10:11-16).



Something told him this was a man of God.

But he needed to be cautious.



He stopped his chariot.

He asked Jehonadab, “Is thy heart right , as my heart is right?”



Jehonadab replied, “It is.”

Jehu said, “Give me thy hand.”



That’s what Peter is saying.

“If your heart is right with God, give Him your hand.”



Show forth the praises of God.