Summary: How can we have the excellent life God wants us to have? 1. By trusting in God’s goodness (vs. 1). 2. By trusting in God’s grace (vs. 2-3). 3. By trusting in God’s guarantees (vs. 4).
God’s Ultimate Excellence for Us - Part 1
Sermon by Rick Crandall
Grayson Baptist Church - March 3, 2013
*Tonight we begin a study of 2 Peter, and as I was thinking about this short book, the word that came to my mind was "ultimate." This book speaks to us about ultimate things. Let me give you a little background.
 One thing I didn’t expect was an ultimate examination.
*I was surprised to learn that many modern Bible scholars have cast doubt on 2 Peter. A.T. Robertson certainly did not question the validity of 2 Peter, but he reported that it was the "Most Doubtful New Testament Book."
*Robertson noted, "Every book in the New Testament is challenged by someone, as indeed is the (historical truth) of Jesus Christ himself and the very existence of God. But it is true that more modern scholars deny the genuineness of 2 Peter than that of any single book in the (Bible)." (1)
*Stanley Morris reported that: "No book of the New Testament had a more difficult time establishing its authenticity, apostolic (authority), and its deserved place in the (the recognized list of inspired books) as 2 Peter. This was due in part to the fact that 2 Peter was not widely known very early, and, so many people in the second and third centuries A.D. were falsely writing under the name Peter." (2)
*William Barclay called 2 Peter "one of the neglected books of the New Testament." (3)
*Well, this little book may have been neglected. But we must not neglect it, because its four pages are packed with important truths God wants us to apply. And this book may have been doubted, but we must not doubt it, because it surely is part of the Word of God! God wants us to study it and apply it to our lives.
*Notice what Peter said about the Old Testament Scriptures down in vs. 19-21. This is from the KJV:
19. We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts:
20. Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation.
21. For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost.
*What Peter said about the Old Testament in this letter is also true of the letter itself. This surely is the Word of God, and we should surely take it to heart.
-But 2 Peter did get an ultimate examination.
 And it speaks to us about ultimate error.
*I am talking about the kind of errors we hear from false teachers. As Peter says in chapter 2:
1. There were also false prophets among the people, even as there will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies, even denying the Lord who bought them, and bring on themselves swift destruction.
2. And many will follow their destructive ways, because of whom the way of truth will be blasphemed.
3. By covetousness they will exploit you with deceptive words; for a long time their judgment has not been idle, and their destruction does not slumber. (2 Peter 2:1-3)
*2 Peter speaks to us about ultimate error.
 And about the ultimate ending.
*This includes Peter's discussion of his soon coming death, and there Peter helps us see how to get ready for our own death. But chapter 3 also includes important information about the end of this broken world, and God’s plan for a brand new world.
*These are some of the ultimate things concerning the book of 2 Peter. But tonight we will look at God’s ultimate excellence for our lives, and how we can get it. Let’s begin by reading 2 Peter 1:1-4.
*How can we have the excellent life God wants us to have? -- We can have it by trusting in Him, because He is excellent in every way. In these verses Peter opens his letter by celebrating some of God’s excellent ways.
1. And first here, we see that we can trust in God’s goodness.
*I’m talking about the goodness of God we see in vs. 1, where Peter said: "Simon Peter, a servant and apostle of Jesus Christ, To those who have obtained like precious faith with us by the righteousness of our God and Savior Jesus Christ."
*Believers: We have obtained our precious faith by or through the righteousness of God and our Savior Jesus Christ. Every good thing we have has come from the goodness of God! Every good thing we are has come from the goodness of God!