Session 1 – Small Group Study Guide
1 Peter 1:1-2
Review of Sermon Notes
Key Idea: Understanding our divine identity enables us to endure everything in life, including suffering.
- The Comfort of Our Divine Identity (v. 1)
- The Cause of Our Divine Identity (v. 2a)
a. The Father: a caring relationship
b. The Spirit: a consecrated relationship
c. The Son: a covenant relationship
- The Chorus of Our Divine Identity (v. 2b)
Word: How this truth should be understood
- As was mentioned in our sermon, the purpose of 1 Peter was to encourage saints to stand firm and endure in the midst of suffering. Take a moment to go through 1 Peter in its entirety. What are some verses that indicate Peter is writing to suffering Christians and how does this shape Peter’s purpose and intent in writing this letter (see 1 Peter 5:12)?
- In verse 1, Peter writes to those who are “elect exiles of the dispersion.” The term “elect” can often bring about theological debates and discussion and can become a cold doctrine with seeming no relevance except to God. But Peter doesn’t waste words. In his effort to encourage and comfort his readers, he chooses to call his readers “elect exiles” in the midst of their suffering. Why is this comforting and how does this shape how we view this term “elect” and “election?”
- In verse 2 we see that Peter mentions all members of the Trinity as a way of encouraging and grounding the identity of his readers. Why is it important that He mentions all three members and how does the mention of each one serve to be a comfort to Peter’s readers in the midst of suffering?
Worship: How this truth affects your heart
- Peter speaks of God as God the Father in verse 2. As we saw in our sermon, this title is meant to illustrate and remind us that God cares deeply about us. Yet in moments of hardship, difficulty, or suffering, we can often wonder what God is doing or perhaps even doubt His love and care. How does Peter’s emphasis on God as Father help you to “trust His heart even when you cannot trace His hand?”
- When it comes to hardship, difficulty, or suffering, we can often view it in a short-sighted manner: They serve as nothing but impediments to our happiness or a thorn in our side. And although suffering in of itself is not good, this passage reminds us that suffering is used by the Spirit to “shave off” that which is not God. How have you personally grown in Christ-likeness as a result of hardship, difficulty, or suffering?
- Take a moment to reflect upon this season of life. Is there currently a suffering, hardship or difficulty that you’re going through? How are you tempted to respond? How does knowing that God will multiply “grace and peace” to you encourage you in those specific moments encourage you?
Work: How this truth works out in your life
- As Pastor Allen reminded us, knowing our identity in Christ is key to perseverance in the midst of hardship, difficulty, or suffering. What is one step you can take to remember your identity – whether it’s memorization of a verse, regularly praying over a truth, or singing certain songs?
- By God’s grace, some of us might not be feeling the sting of hardship, difficulty, or suffering in this specific season. But 1 Corinthians 12:26 reminds us that when “one member suffers, all suffer together.” So look outward to others: Who in your life is going through hardship, difficulty, or suffering? Can you spend time this week praying for them or carefully thinking about how you might use these truths to comfort them and point them to Christ?
- Hardship, difficulty, and suffering is a reality for both Christians and non-believers. But more than just a shared experience, it can serve as a stewardship and opportunity for evangelism. How might you use this shared experience of hardship, difficulty, and suffering as a bridge to hope in Christ? And pray that God would grant you opportunity to do so.
Sharing and Prayer
- As you think about this season and our study in 1 Peter, what is one area in which you’d like to grow in living out your faith? Write this down and prepare to follow-up and track God’s work in our future sessions!
- What are some ways that you’d like to apply what you just learned to that one area you’d like to grow in living out your faith?
- Share other prayer requests.