5 Minute Lessons on the Kingdom of God
If the Righteous Are Barely Saved!
Read time: 3 minutes
Audio Lesson
"17For the time has come for judgment, and it must begin with God's household. And if judgment begins with us, what terrible fate awaits those who have never obeyed God's Good News? 18And also,
'If the righteous are barely saved,
what will happen to godless sinners?'"
(1 Peter 4:17‑18 NLT)

This is an amazing and shocking set of scriptures that the Apostle Peter has written to believers, both Jews and Gentiles, who are living like exiles, scattered throughout the five provinces of Asia Minor.

The Apostle Peter suggest that believers that have repented of their sins, that have followed the way of righteousness, yet at the time of Judgment will "Barely be saved!" Shocking isn't it!

Consider this illustration: Two baseball teams are playing. A man is on third base, a ball is hit, the runner on third base runs towards home plate. The pitcher caught the ground ball and throws it to the catcher on home plate. The umpire calls the play, "Safe!" A coach disputes the call. We want to see the camera. After the umpire sees the footage he shouts, "He is safe!" It was close but he is safe.

We could say, the call is close, but the believer is safe! The Jerusalem Bible states, "Having died to make us righteous is it likely that he would now fail to save us from God's anger (that is His wrath)?" Can you see, we are saved by Grace?

The counterpart to what the Apostle Peter has spoken is really the emphases that I believe he wants to make, that is, if those following the way of righteous, repentance and faith are barely saved — what will happen to those who have spurned the Lord, rejected His Gospel, and followed the way of unrighteousness?

In Romans 2:4‑11 the Apostle Paul describes the two groups of people we have been talking about —the saved and the lost.

"4Don't you see how wonderfully kind, tolerant, and patient God is with you? Does this mean nothing to you? Can't you see that his kindness is intended to turn you from your sin?

5But because you are stubborn and refuse to turn from your sin, you are storing up terrible punishment for yourself. For a day of anger is coming, when God's righteous judgment will be revealed. 6He will judge everyone according to what they have done. 7He will give eternal life to those who keep on doing good, seeking after the glory and honor and immortality that God offers. 8But he will pour out his anger and wrath on those who live for themselves, who refuse to obey the truth and instead live lives of wickedness. 9There will be trouble and calamity for everyone who keeps on doing what is evil—for the Jew first and also for the Gentile. 10But there will be glory and honor and peace from God for all who do good—for the Jew first and also for the Gentile. 11For God does not show favoritism." (New Living Translation)

Which group are you in? Which path have you chosen?
  1. Read Ephesians 2:5.
    "Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;)" ‑ Ephesians 2:5
    We are saved by:
    1. God's grace (Ephesians 2:8)
      "For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:" ‑ Ephesians 2:8
    2. God's undeserved kindness (Ephesians 2:7)
      "That in the ages to come he might shew the exceeding riches of his grace in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus." ‑ Ephesians 2:7
    3. by the Death of God's Son (Romans 5:10)
      "For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life." ‑ Romans 5:10
  2. Read Romans 5:9 (AMP).
    "Therefore, since we are now justified (acquitted, made righteous, and brought into right relationship with God) by Christ's blood, how much more [certain is it that] we shall be saved by Him from the indignation and wrath of God." ‑ Romans 5:9 (AMP)
    Through Christ blood we are:
    1. made righteous
    2. declared righteous
    3. brought into right relationship with God
  3. Read Acts 17:30‑31 (NLT).
    "30'God overlooked people's ignorance about these things in earlier times, but now he commands everyone everywhere to repent of their sins and turn to him. 31For he has set a day for judging the world with justice by the man he has appointed, and he proved to everyone who this is by raising him from the dead.'" ‑ Acts 17:30‑31 (NLT)
    God commands all people, everywhere to:
    1. repent and turn to God for the forgiveness of your sins
    2. take life easy
    3. to slow down the pace of your life
  4. Read Romans 2:7 (NLT).
    "He will give eternal life to those who keep on doing good (those who have turned from sin and are now practicing righteousness), seeking after the glory and honor and immortality that God offers." ‑ Romans 2:7 (NLT)
    God will give eternal life to those:
    1. who have turned from sin and are now practicing righteousness — that is, repentance
    2. who continue in the faith
  5. Read John 14:6.
    "Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me." ‑ John 14:6
    Which path have you chosen? What road are you on?
We want to hear from you!
We would love to hear your feedback on these lessons and how you use them in your own study or in discipling others. If you have any thoughts, stories, testimonies, comments, or questions we would love to hear them!

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