Introduction to II Peter
Topic: Faith Scripture: 2 Peter 1:1–1:11
An Introduction to Second Peter 1:1-11
Our culture echo’s Epicurean. Huh? The Epicureans were a people in days of the early church whose philosophy and number one goal was to pursue a “trouble free life.” Since being pain free and worry free was the driving factor, the notion a sovereign God who would judge someone in the after life was not an acceptable proposition. If First Peter was written to the Church to teach and inspire devotion in the midst of suffering coming from outside the Church, Second Peter was written to stimulate devotion towards Christ in the context of false teaching coming from within.
As we enter Peter’s second letter he begins by unapologetically stating that we have received this faith (1:1). We have not flipped a switch but rather God has called, chosen and given. We are urged to make our calling and election sure (1:10) by pursuing a life that God has prescribed. As we seek Him, He promises us that grace and peace will be abundant (1:2).
He has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of Him (1:3). He has empowered this faith and given us what we need if we seek Him and His daily provision found in His precious and magnificent Word. He wants us to know Him in a way that we participate with Him as we walk through this life. It’s one thing to know about Him. It is another thing completely to know Him personally (1:3-4).
God describes this true faith (5-8). Peter says adorn this faith by adding to it goodness, knowledge, self-control, perseverance, godliness, brotherly kindness and love. We are to “cooperate with God’s plan for producing certain virtues.” (Hughes).
If we do not have these one will be nearsighted and blind and forget about the cleansing power of Christ (9).
As Peter invites the reader in, we are comforted and challenged. In a world that echo’s Epicurean, true grace and peace are available for the Christian but it comes through our knowledge of Him. God has given true faith. He empowers us through His Word and has made it very clear on the direction we are to be heading. If we do these things we will never fall and we will receive a rich welcome in the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ (10-11).
Is your understanding and appreciation of grace and peace growing or shrinking? It is found in your knowledge and participation with God through His promises.
Will you give every concern over to God today and ask Him to empower your faith in Him?
Will you cooperate with God by His Spirit to grow in the virtues He has described?
True Faith is given, empowered and described by God.