Summary: scientia potentia est is a Latin saying meaning knowledge is power. While this can be true in an academic sense, the idea that knowledge is power is also true in a spiritual sense. Let's get into 2nd Peter and see what having spiritual knowledge enables us to do.
KNOWLEDGE IS POWER
2nd Peter 1:1-3
When I was preparing the Sunday School lesson for last week, I had 2 Peter 1:3-4 as part of an answer to one of the questions. But as I looked over the whole passage I saw there was a lot there to tap into so I decided to develop it into a sermon series.
scientia potentia est is a Latin saying meaning knowledge is power. The related phrase, sapientia est potentia is translated as wisdom is power. The idea is having more knowledge, especially through formal education, will give one more control over one's future. Knowing more gives you the capability to be able to do more.
While this can be true in an academic sense, the idea that knowledge is power is also true in a spiritual sense. Having knowledge and wisdom allows us to utilize a power that we wouldn't otherwise realize or understand. Let's get into 2nd Peter and see what having spiritual knowledge can enable us to do.
1) That's good to know (1).
2nd Pet. 1:1, "Simon Peter, a servant and apostle of Jesus Christ, To those who through the righteousness of our God and Savior Jesus Christ have received a faith as precious as ours."
Peter mentions the knowledge of God and Jesus in vss. 2 and 3 but the opportunity to have powerful knowledge starts with two things he says in vs. 1. If you're not careful, you could easily miss them-but they are so important. "Our God and Savior Jesus Christ". Peter calls Jesus God. This must be a glitch or something because he says God and Jesus after that.
Well, if Peter goofed Paul did too. Titus 2:13, "while we wait for the blessed hope—the glorious appearing of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ."
Doubting Thomas must have goofed too. In John 20:28 after Jesus challenged him to touch him and see that it was really him, Thomas exclaimed, "My Lord and my God." Jesus didn't correct him so that means Jesus accepted the title. Jesus referred to himself as "I Am" in John 8:58, the title God used of himself when he appeared to Moses.
The angel must've goofed in Matt. 1:23 when he appeared to Joseph and quoted Isaiah 7:14 saying that the virgin would give birth to a son and they will call him Immanuel, which means God with us. Which means Isaiah goofed when he prophesied this. No goof; truth!
This is important to know. This supports the trinity and the deity of Jesus. This helps me to be sure of Jesus' divine nature. This helps me to understand his great love for me when he left heaven to come to earth. It helps me to see that he has all knowledge and power. So, who should we go to if we want to have knowledge and power? The source of it all-Jesus. Buddha and Mohammed the never claimed to be God. Jesus is the only one to worship and serve.
The other statement Peter made in vs. 1 that's important for us to know is, "to those who have received a faith as precious as ours". What Peter means by this is that those who were not with Jesus have received a faith as precious as the faith of those who were with Jesus.
After Thomas made his declaration of faith, Jesus responded with John 20:29, "Then Jesus told him, “Because you have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed." That's us! We are of those who have not seen but yet have believed. There's a special blessing in that.
Peter spoke about this in his first letter. 1st Pet. 1:8-9, "Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy, for you are receiving the goal of your faith, the salvation of your souls."
I wonder what it would've been like to know someone who walked with Jesus. I would want to hear all the stories and I'd be asking a million questions. I imagine the Apostles were bombarded with questions from those who never got to meet Jesus. So here and in 2nd Pet. 1:1, it's like he's saying, 'even though you didn't get to meet him and be with him like I did, your faith is as precious as mine. You are filled with the same glorious joy as I am'.
Peter describes this joy as inexpressible. This means it was indescribable, overwhelming and deep. I think one of the reasons Peter used this word is because it's amazing how the ones who never met Jesus could have as much faith and joy as the ones who did.