Listen to this Sermon: 07292012FirstPe4.17-19DonRuhl

Download the Notes: 07292012FirstPe4.17-19DonRuhl

Commit Your Soul to a Faithful Creator

How shall we endure judgments in this life and at the Judgment Day?

First Peter 4.17–19

Don Ruhl • Savage Street, Grants Pass, Oregon • July 29, In the year of our Lord, 2012

Scripture Reader and Reading: Lake Thomason – First Peter 4.12–26


  1. At the beginning of His ministry, 
    1. Jesus made a startling revelation of the Judgment,

      21 “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. 22 Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’ 23 And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!’” (Matt 7.21–23).

    2. Those people took their religion seriously, for
      1. they prophesied,
      2. they cast out demons, and
      3. they did many wonders,
        1. all in the name of the Lord, yet,
        2. He will say to them on that day that He never knew them, because
          1. they did not do the will of the Father in heaven,
          2. although it looked as they had!
  2. What then shall happen to Christians who do not take their religion seriously? 
    1. What shall happen to Christians who think worship services are optional?
    2. What shall happen to Christians who never read their Bibles?
    3. What shall happen to Christians who by example teach their children that other things are more important the church, which is the Kingdom of God?
  3. Please listen to the text for today, for 
    1. it reveals judgment on the House of God
    2. by God Himself.


  1. First Peter 4.17, 18 – Judgment for the Righteous and the Ungodly

    17 For the time has come for judgment to begin at the house of God; and if it begins with us first, what will be the end of those who do not obey the gospel of God? (1Pe 4.17). 18 Now

    “If the righteous one is scarcely saved,
    Where will the ungodly and the sinner appear?”
    (1Pe 4.18)

    1. The time, the season, has come for judgment.
      1. In the first century Christians experienced judgment.
        1. Remember 1.6, 7,

          6 …you have been grieved by various trials… (1Pe 1.6, 7).

        2. Remember 4.12,

          12 Beloved, do not think it strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened to you (1Pe 4.12).

        3. In Matthew 25 that the Lord begins with the sheep than the goats.
      2. Peter has impressed upon us the readiness of judgment,

        5 They will give an account to Him who is ready to judge the living and the dead (1Pe 4.5).

        7 But the end of all things is at hand; therefore be serious and watchful in your prayers (1Pe 4.7).

      3. God tolerated Noah’s evil world for a time, then judgment happened.
        1. The fact that it happened,
        2. you can read in three places:
          1. The Scriptures
          2. The reports of a massive in most ancient cultures
          3. Geology
      4. Look at Israel.
      5. Look at Egypt.
      6. Look at Tyre.
      7. Look at Babylon.
      8. I can keep giving you one example after another, but
        1. my point is when God promises judgment,
        2. He carries it out
          1. after He has given plenty of warning.
          2. Has He given the world plenty of warning of the judgment coming?
            1. Promises of the Judgment fill Scripture.
            2. Even as He kept every other judgment,
              1. so He will keep this one.
              2. When it happens,
                1. what do you suppose each of us will think
                2. should have been the most important things in our lives?
    2. The time has come for judgment to begin at the house of God,
      1. showing that the house of God shall not escape judgment.
      2. What shall He find in His house?
        1. He will find lazy and uncommitted Christians.
        2. He will find working and devoted Christians.
          1. Into which group do you belong.
      3. Ezekiel 9 shows a similar scene.
        1. Jerusalem filled itself with idolatrous abominations.
        2. Therefore, God’s glory started to depart, and
          1. He ordered destruction,
          2. except for those who wept over the abominations,
            1. putting a mark on their foreheads, but
            2. destroying the rest, saying,

              5 To the others He said in my hearing, “Go after him through the city and kill; do not let your eye spare, nor have any pity. 6 Utterly slay old and young men, maidens and little children and women; but do not come near anyone on whom is the mark; and begin at My sanctuary.” So they began with the elders who were before the temple (Eze 9.5, 6).

      4. Jeremiah 25 also shows that God does not spare His own,

        29 “‘For behold, I begin to bring calamity on the city which is called by My name, and should you [the other nations and cities of the earth, DR] be utterly unpunished? You shall not be unpunished, for I will call for a sword on all the inhabitants of the earth,’ says the LORD of hosts” (Jer 25.29).

      5. Paul explained to the Corinthians that the Lord does this for a reason,

        32 But when we are judged, we are chastened by the Lord, that we may not be condemned with the world (1Co 11.32).

    3. In First Peter 4.18, Peter quoted Proverbs 11.31.
      1. If judgment begins with us, God’s children,
      2. what will be the end for those who have not obeyed the gospel of God?
        1. God works with His people now that they might stand in the Judgment.
        2. The wicked do not have such a privilege,

          5 Therefore the ungodly shall not stand in the judgment,
          Nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous.
          (Psa 1.5)

    4. We need to see how the righteous are scarcely saved.
      1. It required the sacrifice of the Son of God.
      2. The Son of God told us to enter by the narrow gate.
        1. We like to believe that everyone is going to heaven, except the vile, but
        2. the Lord taught that most people are not going to heaven.
  2. First Peter 4.19 – Judgment and Those Who Suffer

    19 Therefore let those who suffer according to the will of God commit their souls to Him in doing good, as to a faithful Creator (1Pe 4.19).

    1. These things being the case,
      1. for those of you suffering according to the will of God,
      2. commit your soul to Him in doing good.
    2. Peter has addressed both of these issues already.
      1. First, he wrote of suffering according to the will of God,

        6 In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while, if need be, you have been grieved by various trials… (1Pe 1.6).

        17 For it is better, if it is the will of God, to suffer for doing good than for doing evil (1Pe 3.17).

      2. Second, he wrote of doing good as being God’s way,

        12 …they may, by your good works which they observe, glorify God in the day of visitation (1Pe 2.12).

        15 For this is the will of God, that by doing good you may put to silence the ignorance of foolish men— (1Pet 2.15).

        20 …when you do good and suffer, if you take it patiently, this is commendable before God (1Pe 2.20).

        6 [Sisters, you are Sarah’s daughters] if you do good and are not afraid with any terror (1Pe 3.6).

    3. Peter already reminded us of the way Jesus lived,

      23 …who, when He was reviled, did not revile in return; when He suffered, He did not threaten, but committed Himself to Him who judges righteously… (1Pe 2.23).

    4. Remember that He is a faithful Creator.
      1. He says to do good.
      2. Therefore, He shall bless you for it.
        1. Do not forget that when you suffer for being a Christian.


  1. Are you ready for the Judgment? 
    1. The entire biblical message prepares us for the Judgment.
    2. Here is why:

      17 …the Father…without partiality judges according to each one’s work… (1Pe 1.17).

      12 glorify God in the day of visitation (1Pe 2.12).

      23 [Jesus] committed Himself to Him who judges righteously (1Pe 2.23).

      5 They will give an account to Him who is ready to judge the living and the dead (1Pe 4.5).

  2. Therefore, brethren, 
    1. fear God and keep His commandments, because
    2. God will bring every work into judgment (Ecc 12.13, 14).

      28 “Do not marvel at this; for the hour is coming in which all who are in the graves will hear His voice 29 and come forth—those who have done good, to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil, to the resurrection of condemnation” (John 5.28, 29).

      10b For we shall all stand before the judgment seat of Christ… 12 So then each of us shall give account of himself to God (Rom 14.10, 12).

      10 For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive the things done in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad (2Co 5.10).

      11 Then I saw a great white throne and Him who sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away. And there was found no place for them. 12 And I saw the dead, small and great, standing before God, and books were opened. And another book was opened, which is the Book of Life. And the dead were judged according to their works, by the things which were written in the books. 13 The sea gave up the dead who were in it, and Death and Hades delivered up the dead who were in them. And they were judged, each one according to his works. 14 Then Death and Hades were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. 15 And anyone not found written in the Book of Life was cast into the lake of fire (Rev 20.11–15).

  3. Therefore, let us not fool around with our faith, but 
    1. let us so live as though judgment is a heart beat away.
      1. When you stand before God at the Judgment,
      2. for what shall you give an account?
    2. Be converted to Christ right now!
      1. Rededicate yourself to Jesus who died for you!
  4. Commit your soul to your Creator. 
    1. When Jesus said on the cross,

      46 “Father, ‘into Your hands I commit My spirit’” (Luke 23.46),

      1. He did not began at that moment to commit His spirit to the Father.
      2. What our Teacher Jesus said at death had been His life.
    2. We cannot live for ourselves and
      1. expect God to keep our souls and
      2. welcome us into heaven.
  5. After what we have heard today from Peter, 
    1. I do not believe that I can overemphasize what Jesus said,

      33 “But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you” (Matt 6.33).

    2. Be obedient to Jesus Christ,
      1. even if the rest of the world,
      2. even if the rest of the church,
      3. even if all your friends
        1. do not obey Jesus, or
        2. try to tell you that you can ignore these things.