The Victory Proclaimed

Date: PM
Text: I Peter 3:19-21
Psalters: 380, 347, 297, 398
  1. The Victory Evidenced.
    1. Our victory was evidenced and proclaimed in the flood.
      1. The days prior to the flood were so terrible (Gen. 6:5).
      2. Day after day for years Noah preached righteousness to the mocking ungodly (II Peter 2:5; Jude 14,ff).
      3. While he preached the ungodly boasted that the flood would never come and they were secure in their sin and that they would succeed in destroying Christ?s church from the earth.
    2. The victory of Noah was also the victory of the cross of Christ, though Jesus had not yet died.
      1. This victory was a definite and conclusive victory of the entire church (cf. II Peter 2:4,5).
      2. After Jesus won the victory in time it was announced by His Spirit in hell to the ungodly mockers of Noah.
      3. Jesus now preaches through the New Testament church the coming judgment and the victory of the elect unjust.
  2. While the ark was being prepared God was ?longsuffering.?
    1. God?s longsuffering is His eager longing to deliver His people from the terrible affliction they bear for His sake, and His patience in delivering them until all was ready.
      1. God was eager to pour out His wrath on the wicked world and eager to save His church.
      2. But He waited patiently until the ark was finally ready and they could be saved from the world through the flood.
    2. The same longsuffering will be repeated in the final destruction of this world by fire (II Peter 3:3-7).
      1. The church, small because of apostasy and persecution will experience God?s longsuffering (II Peter 3:9).
      2. Then God will come in judgment, which will destroy the wicked and save His church and bring them into a new creation.
  3. Our victory in Jesus is also demonstrated in baptism, which powerfully helps us have a good conscience toward God.
    1. Baptism is the like figure, i.e., its significance is like that of the flood (21).
      1. Baptism does not remove the filth of the body, but it is a sign of our victory in the cross and resurrection of Jesus.
      2. Baptism marks the complete separation of the child of God from the world.
    2. And this is ?the answer of a good conscience? before God. ?Answer? is literally: question, an earnest seeking.
      1. A ?good? conscience is in one who knows he has been delivered from sin and been brought into God?s favor.
      2. The answer to our quest is found in baptism, for it is the certainty of victory in Jesus? cross.
      3. We are spurred on to faithfulness by a hope assured us in baptism.