Pastor Shane Ham : Being the People of God

The Real Deal · 36:30 · Recorded January 3, 2021

Being the People of God

1 Peter 2:9-12 (NIV) 9But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light. 10Once you were not a people, but now you are the people of God; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy. 11Dear friends, I urge you, as aliens and strangers in the world, to abstain from sinful desires, which war against your soul. 12Live such good lives among the pagans that, though they accuse you of doing wrong, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day he visits us.

On being a “priest”:

Status: One who gets access to “the center”.

Qualifications: Holiness.

Duties: To offer up spiritual sacrifices.

1 Peter 2:4-5 (NIV) As you come to him, the living Stone–rejected by men but chosen by God and precious to him– you also, like living stones, are being built into a spiritual house to be a holy priesthood, offering spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.

On being you:

1. Someone who gets access to “the center”.

Barriers to believing this:

You feel inadequate to get in.

You get distracted by lesser “centers”.

You try to make your own “center”.

The cure for it:

Admitting our need.

Colossians 1:21-22 (NIV) Once you were alienated from God and were enemies in your minds because of your evil behavior. But now he has reconciled you by Christ’s physical body through death to present you holy in his sight, without blemish and free from accusation—

Zechariah 3:2-5 (NIV) 2The LORD said to Satan, "The LORD rebuke you, Satan! The LORD, who has chosen Jerusalem, rebuke you! Is not this man a burning stick snatched from the fire?" 3Now Joshua was dressed in filthy clothes as he stood before the angel. 4The angel said to those who were standing before him, "Take off his filthy clothes." Then he said to Joshua, "See, I have taken away your sin, and I will put rich garments on you." 5Then I said, "Put a clean turban on his head." So they put a clean turban on his head and clothed him, while the angel of the LORD stood by.

Linking with Jesus.

Getting into his heart.

2. Holiness.

The kind of character that flows from being on the inside.

A praising spirit instead of an irritable spirit.

James 1:2 (BBE) Let it be all joy to you, my brothers, when you undergo tests of every sort.

A repenting spirit instead of a defensive spirit.

3. Offer up spiritual sacrifices.

Hebrews 13:11, 15-16 (NIV) 11The high priest carries the blood of animals into the Most Holy Place as a sin offering, but the bodies are burned outside the camp…. 15Through Jesus, therefore, let us continually offer to God a sacrifice of praise–the fruit of lips that confess his name. 16And do not forget to do good and to share with others, for with such sacrifices God is pleased.

Taking time for worship and prayer.

Taking care of people in need.

Talk It Over…
  • If you wrote a “job description” of what it means to be a follower of Jesus, what would be included? If you used that to interview yourself for the job, would you be hired?

  • Reread 1 Peter 2:9-12. What do you understand better about belonging to a royal priesthood? What do you think it means when it says, “Once you were not a people…”?

  • How does it make you feel to be called a “Priest”? Is the title one that you accept and carry with honor or is it one that you feel doesn’t seem to fit and makes you uncomfortable?

  • As one who gets access to “the center”, what barriers have you faced? One that Shane mentioned? Something else? What did you do, or will you do to break down that barrier?

  • Review the kind of character listed in point #2. Is one of these a challenge for you at this time? Share that with your small group or a friend and agree together in prayer that you’ll focus on growth in that area and that your group/friend will be an accountability partner for you.

  • What are the spiritual sacrifices that you offer up to the Lord? What could you offer? What have you been holding back that you want to put on the altar today? According to verses15 & 16 in Hebrews 13, what are the sacrifices that God is concerned with?

  • Looking back over 2020, write out a “sacrifice of praise” to Jesus reflecting on all he has done for you. What sacrifice of “doing good and sharing with others” will you offer this week?

  • Parents – Check out the information on our kid’s page at northpointe.org/kids where you’ll find info on Sunday services and family resources to help you as you navigate this current season.

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