In the Holy Bible, we have two books and several sermons by Saint Peter. These teachings were given by inspiration of God and are infallibly true as is the entire Bible. How many who profess to honor Saint Peter have never taken time to read his teachings. Before his death, he spoke of his desire that we might remember his words. He said, "Moreover, I will endeavor that ye may be able after my decease to have these things always in remembrance" (I Peter 1:15).
While everyone should read Saint Peter for themselves, let us look at some of his words on important truths. Concerning the Lord Jesus Christ he preached, "Neither is there salvation in any other; for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved" (Acts 4:12).
Saint Peter often spoke of the good news of Christ's death, burial and resurrection. In a sermon he said, "The God of our fathers raised up Jesus whom ye slew and hanged on a tree" (Acts 5:30). He explains why this is good news by saying that Jesus died in behalf of sinners: "Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree" (I Peter 1:24). Speaking again, he said: "For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God" (I Peter 3:18). He clearly points out Christ as the only one who can make payment or reparation to God for our sins. The death of Christ for sinners is seen as the only power that can bring us to God.
The reader of Saint Peter's writings is also warned of false ideals that people have about how the forgiveness of sin is received. He warns us that it cannot be bought with money: "Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold. . . . But with the precious Blood of Christ. . . ." (I Peter 1:8-10). One man who tried to buy spiritual blessings with money was rebuked in this way, "Thy money perish with thee, because thou hast thought that the Gift of God may be purchased with money" (Acts 8:20).
Saint Peter also taught that good works cannot earn anyone a place in heaven. While preaching on the way of salvation, he said: "But we believe that through the Grace of the Lord, Jesus Christ, we shall be saved. . . ." (Acts 15:11). As another apostle explains in Romans 11:6, "And if by grace, then is it no more works." Grace is God's mercy to the undeserving and thus excludes the ideal of anyone trying to be saved by good works.
The reader, upon hearing that salvation is neither purchased with money or earned by good works may be wondering just how it is obtained. The Bible's answer, of course, is that salvation in Christ is a free gift to those who receive it by faith. Saint Peter said concerning Jesus Christ, "To him give all the prophets witness, that through his name whosoever believeth in him shall receive remission of sins." (Acts 10:43) He also wrote in his epistle, "Receiving the end of your faith, even the salvation of your souls" (I Peter 1:9). As faith may be defined as trust, reliance or belief, we see that the individual who is able to rely completely upon Christ is forgiven and cleansed from all sin.
We shall conclude by asking the reader if he/she has experienced the forgiveness of sins and the assurance of salvation that comes from faith in a perfect Savior. Do you profess to follow Saint Peter and yet seek salvation in church, charity or good works? Repent of all imperfect works with which you hoped to please God and look to Christ whose death on Calvary was alone the payment for sin. Receive by faith the righteousness of Christ, which can alone bring you into acceptance with God. True faith lets a man serve God out of love instead of fear. True faith makes heaven a certain destination and causes us to see God as our Father instead of our judge. May God grant you grace to obey Saint Peter's teachings by looking to the Lord Jesus Christ today!
[From FBC, Independence, KY. Scanned and formatted by Jim Duvall.]
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