Suffering In The Spirit

Continuing his first letter to Christian friends (328), Peter emphasizes the blessing of sharing in the sufferings of Christ.  We should thank God when we get to suffer for following Jesus.

suffering-joyfully

Enduring such suffering joyfully can be the most powerful witness for Jesus.

In church life, leaders are to model humble submission to God, rather than becoming spiritual dictators.  The humility of Christ is wanted for all members of any faith fellowship, especially its leaders.

Amy_Carmichael_with_children2

This is important because we have an enemy, who will use any device to destroy Christian fellowship.  Satan wants to devour us spiritually, as a roaring lion physically devours its prey.

lion roaring

Remaining humble before God is our best defense against Satan.

At about this same time, Luke wrote his record of the acts of the Holy Spirit through the witnesses for Jesus, and the miraculous spread of the Christian faith from the Middle East into western Asia & southern Europe.  His narrative began with Jesus’ return to heaven, and covered a period of about 30 years – up to the time of Paul’s imprisonment in Rome.

The book of Acts shows us how Jesus worked through his church then, and how he desires to work through his church now.  It is paraphrased in previous posts on this blog, and harmonized chronologically with letters from early Christian leaders.

 

(328) 1 Peter 4-5