Heidelcast 177: As It Was In The Days Of Noah (21)—Be Not Surprised (2)

This series is a study of what Scripture says about eschatology, i.e., the relation of heaven to earth and last things. We began with a survey of what Scripture says generally and now we are working through 1 Peter. We have come 1 Peter 4:12–19. The Apostle Peter has been making the case that, “as it was in the days of Noah” (Luke 17:26), so it is in our day. He has been making the case throughout that Christians, by virtue of their dual citizenship, are, in certain important ways, refugees and aliens (2:11) because we are “elect exiles” (1:1). In 1:7 he has already hinted what he begins to explain now in more detail. Life between the ascension and return of Christ is often a life of suffering. In our time and culture(s) we use the word “suffer” very loosely. Perhaps most often we use it to refer to medical, emotional, or psychiatric conditions. To be sure these are forms of suffering. Christians are not Gnostics (e.g., The Church of Christ Science, “Christian Science”). We affirm the reality of our shared humanity and the reality of physical, emotional, psychological suffering (e.g., Matt 8:6) but when the Apostle Peter speaks of suffering here his paradigm is Christ. To be sure, Christians affirm whole-heartedly the true humanity of Jesus. He suffered emotionally and physically. His true humanity is both body and soul nevertheless, when Peter thinks about Christ’s suffering he is not thinking of medical conditions. He is thinking of Christ’s suffering under “the elders and chief priests and scribes” (Mark 8:31), his being treated with contempt (Mark 9:12). However the world may regard Christ’s church, the Apostle Peter has a surprising message about the way Christ views his church. This is part two of our consideration of 1 Peter 4:12–19.



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