Lesson 345: 2 Peter 1:1…
2 Peter 1:1 Simon Peter, a servant and apostle of Jesus Christ.
This letter was written by the Apostle Peter around AD 65, just a few years before his death. His main concerns were spiritual growth, false teaching, and waiting for Christ’s return. After Jesus rose from the dead, he said to Peter, Feed my sheep (John 21:17). Peter did this through his teaching, preaching and writing.
2 Peter 1:3 His divine power has given us everything we need for a godly life.
Peter was less concerned for his readers’ health, wealth and happiness than for their godliness. God does not promise everything we need for a comfortable life, but everything we need for a godly life.
There is a road in England called Godliman Street. No one knows for sure, but a man with a reputation for godliness seems to have lived there. Before the street had a name they would say, that is where the godly man lives.
If a street was named after you, what would it be called? Busy-man street?Strong-man street?Wealthy-man street? If God has given us everything we need for a godly life, we ought to be known for godliness.
2 Peter 1:3b [He] called us by his own glory and goodness.
Coming to Christ is like saying yes to the most beautiful person in the world. His glory and goodness surpass everything we have ever known, and we are powerfully drawn to him. Once we see the beauty of Christ, we will want to be his forever.
But Jesus’ beauty is not perceived by everyone. He had no beauty or majesty to attract us to him, nothing in his appearance that we should desire him (Isaiah 53:2), wrote Isaiah. The beauty of Jesus is not found in his appearance, but in his glory and goodness displayed on the cross. Once we see it, we’ll never forget it, and will want to tell others about him.
2 Peter 1:11 [Y]ou will receive a rich welcome into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
The most that we might hope for is to slink into heaven without being caught. I would be happy to stand in the back, with any other scoundrels lucky enough to be there. But God has better plans for us. He is preparing a rich welcome for all who follow his Son.
Even now, we are surrounded by . . . a great cloud of witnesses (Hebrews 12:1), says Hebrews. They have already arrived and are cheering us on as we approach the finish line. We have more friends in heaven than we’ll ever have on earth, and they are excited for us to join them. They will give us a rich welcome into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
2 Peter 1:12 I will always remind you of these things, even though you know them and are firmly established in the truth you now have.
Peter may have led some of his readers to Christ on the day of Pentecost (Acts 2:41). If so, they had been listening to him preach for about thirty-five years, and heard everything he had to say, at least twice. But Peter understood an important part of preaching is reminding God’s people of what they already know. It is wonderful to learn something new, but we must also be reminded of the old. That is why Paul told Timothy to Keep reminding God’s people of these things (2 Timothy 2:14).
A man in his fifties walked out the front door of his house, and promptly forgot who he was. For nearly a month he wandered around until he was finally found. He was far from home, with a full white beard, and holes in both his shoes. It is a terrible thing to forget what we ought to know, so we ought to thank God for those who remind us.
2 Peter 2:19 They promise them freedom, while they themselves are slaves of depravity.
In the name of freedom, false teachers were leading God’s people into depravity. But depravity is a cruel master, as many will testify. It undercuts potential, ruins relationships, and compels its victims to shameful acts—all in the name of freedom. But Jesus sets us free from our depravity so that we can be our best.
A young man was going through withdrawals, and desperately prayed for money, so he could buy more drugs. Since God did not answer that prayer, he asked God to take away his craving, which God was pleased to do. We cannot always free ourselves, but God can set us free, if we turn to him with all our heart. This may happen instantly, or over time, but there is no freedom apart from Jesus Christ. Everlasting freedom or eternal bondage depend on who we serve.
Reflection and Review
Why isn’t everyone attracted to Jesus?
What is your favorite kind of sermon?
Why is sin a cruel master?