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Studies from 1Peter: 1

Two encouraging truths about Christians. 1Peter 1: 1, 2

“Peter and an apostle of Jesus Christ, To the pilgrims of the Dispersion in Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia, elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, in sanctification of the Spirit,  for obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace to you and peace be multiplied.” 1Peter 1:1, 2 (NKJV)

Background: - Peter writes to Christians scattered in five regions of the Roman Empire. They were going through persecution and writer is aware of the more terrible sufferings they will have to face. Believers will have to flee from their land to escape trials.


      1. To exhort and strengthen the suffering saints. 1Peter 5:12
      2. To share his own experience in order to assure them. 1 Peter 5:12.

Theme: - “Grace of God” 1 Peter 5:12

      1. Saving Grace. Ch. 1:1—2:10 What God’s grace has done for them already.
      2. Sustaining Grace. Ch. 2:11—5:14 What God’s grace can still do for them:-
        1. Strengthens to conduct well.  2:11—3:12
        2. Helps to endure sufferings. 3:13—5:14

Cf. v.2c “Grace to you and peace be multiplied” Peter wants them to know that:-

      1. They stand in Grace. Cf. 1Peter 5:12
      2. They need more grace to continue. V. 2c.

Every Christian should be aware of both these facts. Whatever we are today is by God’s grace alone, (Cf. 1Cori. 15:10) and only by grace we can keep on going in God’s will and purposes.

Such realization should make us more humble and lead us to the throne of grace to be empowered afresh always. Heb. 4:16.

Two things about the readers:-

    1. ‘Pilgrims of the dispersion’. V.1a.

‘Dispersion’ / ‘Diaspora’: –generally referred to Jews living outside.  Palestine. Cf. Jn 7:35 – he applied to Christians. They are away from their heavenly home.
‘Pilgrim’ or ‘sojourners’ refer to their alien nationality. They are temporary residents. They have no permanent dwelling place.

In fact, the condition of every Christian is always this. They are pilgrims and strangers in this world, away from their homeland. cf. Philippians 3:20; Hebrews 11:14.

Later Peter would exhort them to make sure that their life style reflects this reality. ch. 2:11ff.

2. ‘Elect’ v. 1b. –Chosen of God.

Another term used for Israel is applied to Christians.  People of Israel gloried in their election. cf. Psa 33:12; 65:4. Indeed it was a blessed privilege to be known as God’s own chosen ones.
This is true of these suffering Christians too. Though they are aliens, scattered, rejected and despised God has elected them to be His own.

The Basis of Election:-
             What prompted God to elect us to be His own? cf. 1Corin. 1:27—29. We have nothing to boast as to be worthy of such an election. God chose the foolish things, weak, base and despised things. cf. Jn 15:16. “You did not choose me, but I chose you.”

In His sovereign will and grace God foreknew us and chosen us in the beloved son Lord Jesus Christ. cf Rom. 9:11, 26, 13, 18; 11:5; 2Tim 1:9, 10.

The purpose of Election:-
            Why did He choose us? Awareness of that will help us to know the blessed position we have in Christ.  Some of the goals are:-

      1. To be saved. 2 Thess. 2:13
      2. To be blameless / holy. Eph 1:4
      3. To be His own. 1 Peter 2:9 ; Deut 7:6.
      4. To be conformed to His Son- Lord Jesus Christ. Rom 8:29

In the gracious choice and purposes of God, what blessed privileges we possess.
Realization of this truth should encourage us as well as humble us.

Both these truths -pilgrim status as well as the elected position- of Christians should encourage us so much to face difficulties in life. We belong to God even though the world doesn’t recognize it. We need to live worthy of the Lord hoping and trusting that God would accomplish His purposes in His own time and way.

Next: The process of our redemption

Prepared by Nelson Thomas as part of his teaching ministry. You are free to use it for your personal study.
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