1 Peter 3:18-20
"For Christ also suffered once to atone for sins, the just for the unjust, that He might bring you to God, being put to death in the flesh, but made alive by the Spirit, by whom also He went and preached to the spirits in prison, who formerly disobeyed, when the longsuffering of God was waiting in the days of Noah, when the ark was being prepared, in which a few, that is, eight souls, were saved through water; " (1 Peter 3:18-20, EMTV)
A1 Most of chapter 3 deals with the suffering that Christians too often endure.
A2 Our passage today deals with the suffering that Christ endured.
B1 This is both an example and doctrine.
B2 God (Father, Son, and Holy Spirit) suffered in the sense of seeing the evil done by humanity in particular for the 120 days of Noah's preaching while Noah was building the ark (Genesis 6-9).
B3 The Lord Jesus suffered not only in His life and ministry from humanity and evil spirits but even in punishment as the Lamb of God for the sins of the world.
B1 How many times did Christ suffer? (Once)
B2 What was His purpose in suffering? (To atone for our sins, not for His sins. Jesus was sinless (Hebrews 4:15).
B3 What is suffering?
C1 The Greek word is pascho.
C2 This primary sense is unpleasant experiences.
C3 It means unpleasant experiences as pain, sorrow, abuse (of any sort), bad dreams/nightmares (Matthew 27:19), physician's treatments (Mark 5:26), and temptation (Hebrews 2:18).
C4 The particular suffering that Jesus endured came from
D1 The religious leaders (Matthew 16:21)
D2 The Romans (Mark 8:31, John 19:1, John 19:18, and Hebrews 13:12).
D3 The Father (God the Father) (Hebrews 13:12, Mark 15:34)
B4 What is atonement?
C1 The Greek word is katallagé.
D1 The basic meaning is to reconcile, to restore to favor.
D2 It is most frequently translated reconcile, which is to bring together two whose differences kept them apart.
D3 The differences between God and humanity is sin, evil, in thoughts, desires, words, and deeds (Isaiah 59:2).
C2 The Old Testament Hebrew word for atonement is ka^phar and related to kippur.
D1 It means "to cover" thus to make something not seen as in painting a wall. In the KJV it has been translated "appease, make (an) atonement, cleanse, disannul, forgive, be merciful, pacify, pardon, to pitch, purge (away), put off, (make) reconcile (-liation)"
D2 Wiktionary gives one definition of atonement as "A repair done for the sake of a damaged relationship."
B5 Whose sins did Jesus have to suffer for? (Ours Romans 3:23).
B6 How do you feel about Jesus having to suffer for your sins?
B7 Who is the just?
B8 Who is the unjust?
B9 What was the purpose of His suffering?
B10 What died? (His flesh)
B11 What did His spirit do?
B12 Who are the "spirits in prison?"
C1 Some feel that this refers to Noah and his preaching.
C2 Personally, I feel that Jesus's spirit went to Paradise section of Hades/Sheol and explained to the believers who He was and what they had been waiting for has happened. Jesus is the Lamb of God that takes away the sin of the world. The saints in Paradise heard that Jesus was the Messiah they had been looking for. He also preached to the unbelievers, the rejectors, on the other side who now know what they missed and rejected. That latter group now has nothing to do but wait the sure judgment from God and be sent to the Lake of Fire for eternity. See Ephesians 4:8. In doing this the evil spirits (fallen angels) heard the message of deliverance for the saints, the believers, and condemnation for those who rejected, unbelievers, both humanity and spirits. Jesus proclaims that He is victor.
B13 What can you do to avoid the condemnation and wrath of God? (NeedGod).