2nd Peter Series
Part 13
“The Word of God”

Last time we closed out with the 7 kingdom character virtues we’re to add to our faith. Peter said we’re to add to our faith virtue, knowledge, self-control, perseverance, godliness, brotherly kindness, and love. The promise is that if we do this, we will never be barren or unfruitful in our knowledge of Jesus.

Picking up chapter 1 in verse 10, Peter goes on to say:

1:10 “Therefore, brethren, be even more diligent to make your calling and election sure,”

The word for “diligent” carries the idea of zeal and haste. We’re to exert ourselves and make an effort. Make every effort to make your calling and election sure.

The “calling” Peter speaks of is how God invites all people to receive His gift of salvation. He called you and you responded.

The word “election” has to do with God’s foreknowledge of your salvation. Because He is omniscient (all knowing) God knew ahead of time that you would respond to His call to come to His Son. So when we are saved two things are at work:

God’s calling and our responding.

The Holy Spirit sees to it that everyone has an opportunity and ability to respond when God calls. And our part is to respond.

John writes, “This true Light (Jesus), coming into the world, gives light to every man” (John 1:9).

John says that everyone at some point in time is approached by and given a chance to respond to the Light, Jesus Christ.

God’s sovereignty never rides roughshod over others. He will not force Himself on anyone.

So by doing what he said in verses 5-9, we will indeed make our calling and election sure. Peter’s conviction is—where there is true life there will be growth!

1:10b “for if you do these things you will never stumble (fall);“

Steady spiritual growth is crucial to our victory over the world, the flesh, and the devil.

We might say that Peter is encouraging us against “world-bordering”—which is to have one foot in and one foot out, walking around the edges of the world like one would walk around the edges of a dangerous flame.

Peter then gives another promise:

1:11 “for so an entrance will be supplied to you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.”

ERV “And you will be given a very great welcome into the kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, a kingdom that never ends.”

Peter seems to imply that there will be degrees of glory hereafter in proportion to our faithfulness in the use of God’s gifts here.

In the parable of the talents, for instance, two of the three recipients of the master’s talents heard the words, “Well done, enter into the joy of your Lord” (Matt 25:23). But the one that buried his gift did not receive such a welcome.

The Lord also says to two of them in the same parable that, due to their faithfulness with “a few things on earth,” He would make them rulers over much in the world to come.

Thus, what we do here regarding the opportunities God gives us will decide our capacity for what is coming.

Peter next reveals what is most pressing to his heart as he knows he will soon be martyred:

1:12 “For this reason I will not be negligent to remind you always of these things, though you know and are established in the present truth.”

Peter believed in the constant repetition of a thing. He is known as the “Apostle of remembrance.” To repeat something was to nail it firmly into their souls.

He reminds them yet again in the next verses:

1:13 “Yes, I think it is right, as long as I am in this tent, to stir you up by reminding you,”

It is human nature to remember the things we should forget, and forget the things we should remember!

So as long as he had breath, Peter was resolved to remind them of the Apostolic teaching God had given to the early church, the same truth we now hold in our hands in our Bibles. He was determined to root and ground them in the truth of the Word. This would assure their fruitfulness, faithfulness, and steadfastness in the things of God.

Next, Peter speaks of his soon to come martyrdom:

1:14 “knowing that shortly I must put off my tent, just as our Lord Jesus Christ showed me.”

Peter was destined to die a martyr by crucifixion. Jesus had told him as much in John 21:18-19. Tradition tells us that when the time came, Peter asked to be crucified upside down because he didn’t feel worthy to die as his Lord had.

So he speaks of his determination to constantly remind them of “these things,” (a phrase he uses five times in chapter 1 alone) as long as he has time left on earth.

Furthermore, he promises:

1:15 “Moreover I will be careful to ensure that you always have a reminder of these things after my decease.“

He is telling them that he is going to write “these things” down, 1 and 2 Peter serving as the result.

Interestingly, the word he uses for “decease” is exodos (ex’-od-os). It means “a way out” or “a departure.” As Israel was delivered out of Egypt to go the Promised Land, Peter would soon be delivered from the world to go to heaven!

The former fisherman, now a mighty Apostle, took his approaching execution in stride. He resolved to make full use of what time he had remaining by reminding them of God’s Word.

So far, Peter has talked about our walk with God (1:1-15); next he talks about the Word of God (1:16-21). He begins with its integrity:

1:16a “For we did not follow cunningly devised fables…”

The word for “fable” is muthos, from which we get the word “myth.” The Word of God is not a myth. The story of Jesus is not a made up children’s fable. It was not “cunningly crafted” by people trying to start some kind of new religion.

Peter had a firsthand knowledge of both the facts of Jesus’ life and the history of the church. He knew that the virgin birth, the sinless life, the countless miracles, the peerless teaching, the atoning death, the burial, Resurrection, Ascension, and promised return of Christ were all verifiable facts!

He goes on to say,

1:16b “when we made known to you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but were eyewitnesses of His majesty.“

He affirms, “We weren’t lying to you when we told you about, first, His POWER—the miracles He had performed, the power He exercised over the forces of hell. The word is dunamis, which means unhindered, untrammeled, unequaled power.

It is this power of His that can make crooked men straight, drunken men sober, and wicked men pure. This power made demons flee and diseases disappear. And it is this same power that will be exerted to call millions out of their graves at His return!

Peter says, We also spoke to you of His RETURN, His coming again. That wasn’t a made up story. It’s true. He’s coming back.

And, Peter continues, we also told you of “His MAJESTY,” which he, James, and John had personally witnessed on the Mount of Transfiguration when Jesus had shined as brightly as the sun while speaking with Moses and Elijah.

So we have the unassailable INTEGRITY of the Word, and next Peter talks about the INSTRUCTION of the Word:

He focuses more closely on what happened on the Mount of Transfiguration, and the Word that came from God:

1:17 “For He (Jesus) received from God the Father honor and glory when such a voice came to Him from the Excellent Glory: “This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased. 18 And we heard this voice which came from heaven when we were with Him on the holy mountain.”

On the mount the Lord Jesus had been transfigured. “…and He was transfigured before them. His face shone like the sun, and His clothes became as white as the light” (Matt. 17:2).

Transfigured means “to change form.” On the mountain they had seen Him literally shining with the light of another world!

But Peter had also heard a voice from heaven. The words had burned into his soul. Peter calls it “such a voice!” It boomed and cut, shook and thrilled his soul. Peter says it came from “the excellent glory.”

And the voice they heard had focused all its attention on the Lord Jesus. “This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.” No accolade could be higher than this!

This was the Father’s instruction. It’s all about Jesus. Hear Him. Follow Him. Bow to Him!

Peter says, “this voice from heaven we heard…”

His words are emphatic. Three normal men saw and heard these things. They were eye and ear witnesses. Period. It’s not made up. It’s not a fable.

So far, Peter has talked about the INTEGRITY of the Word, the INSTRUCTION of the Word, and next he talks about the INCOMPARABILITY of the Word.

1:19a “We have also a more sure word of prophecy.”

Even though the Mount of Transfiguration was awesome with the sights and voice that accompanied it, we have a “more sure word of prophecy”—the written Word of God!

Many people these days place more credence in visions and experiences than they do the Bible. This is dangerous. Voices and visions can originate from satanic and demonic sources. All things must be held up to the scrutiny of God’s word. As Paul warned in Galatians:

“But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach a gospel other than the one we preached to you, let them be under God’s curse!” (1:8)

And he also warned about Satan’s ability to disguise himself,

“For Satan himself masquerades as an angel of light“ (2 Cor. 11:14).

So Peter assures us that the Bible is “the more sure Word.”

So he advises, Listen to it!

1:19b “which you do well to heed as a light that shines in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts;”

We’re living in a “dark place” says Peter. He uses a word for “DARK” that is nowhere else in the entire Bible. It means “dry, parched, and squalid.” It signifies something murky and dirty.

Since we live in a dry, dark, murky, and dirty world, we must DAILY read God’s word, which gives us a sure and steady light to lighten our path!

Soon, says Peter, the “Day Star” will appear, which means “the Light Bringer.” The very last title for Christ in the Bible is “the bright and morning star” (Rev. 22:16). When Jesus returns, the nighttime will be over and eternal day will dawn at last!

So Peter has spoken of the Bible’s INTEGRITY, it’s INSTRUCTION, it’s INCOMPARABILITY, and now finally it’s INSPIRATION:

1:20 “knowing this first, that no prophecy of Scripture is of any private interpretation (thought up by the prophet himself).”

The Bible did not originate with the writers themselves. They didn’t come up with it on their own.

1:21 “for prophecy never came by the will of man, but holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit.”

The word “moved” is from a Greek word meaning “borne along” like a ship with a sail is pushed along by the wind. Those who wrote the Bible were caught up by the Holy Spirit and carried forward at His will.

They sat down, pen in hand, to write a letter, or record a historical event, or phrase a song. Suddenly, the Holy Spirit took hold of them, caught them up, and bore them along. And what we have is the very God-breathed Word of God!


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