Summary: How many children know how their parents became Christians? It is time to pass on the torch of faith by telling the story of our own conversion and comparing it with God’s Word!
What Will You Leave Us This Time
12For this reason I will not be negligent to remind you always of these things, though you know and are established in the present truth. 13Yes, I think it is right, as long as I am in this tent, to stir you up by reminding you, 14knowing that shortly I must put off my tent, just as our Lord Jesus Christ showed me. 15Moreover I will be careful to ensure that you always have a reminder of these things after my decease.
16For we did not follow cunningly devised fables when we made known to you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but were eyewitnesses of His majesty. 17For He 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.” 18And we heard this voice which came from heaven when we were with Him on the holy mountain.
19And so we have the prophetic word confirmed, 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; 20knowing this first, that no prophecy of Scripture is of any private interpretation, 21for prophecy never came by the will of man, but holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit.
Look at how this passage naturally divides into three sections:
12-15 Peter is stressing the reason for his reminding them.
16-18 Peter is a witness of Jesus Glory and God’s voice affirming Him.
19-21 Peter is pronouncing the surety of Old Testament Prophecy about Christ.
These things are important so that the recipients of this letter have confidence in the message they have received and will maintain faithfulness to the true instruction about Christ.
The next thing Peter tells us (in the second chapter), is the fact of false teachers who are secretly introducing destructive instructions that have the potential of directing them away from Christ. Much of chapter 2 of this little letter sounds like Jude. In fact, many scholars believe that either Jude borrowed from Peter or Peter borrowed from Jude. They both borrowed from the Holy Spirit, so it matters not to me. I have no problem at all with either being true, or neither being true; either way it changes nothing of the importance of the message and the warning within it.
We will look into chapter two next week, Lord willing.
Today we see the heart of Peter for those to whom he writes, the foundation of the authority of Peter’s words, and a certification to the validity of the words of the Prophets of the Old Testament.
Those are the nuts and bolts of the passage. Now lets consider some lessons from the text…
When you think about your walk with God what do you remember most? Do you remember who taught you about Jesus in the first place? Do you remember at what point you came to conviction about Jesus as the Christ, the Son of God, who died on the cross for your sins? Do you remember the details of your response to him? What was going on in your heart and mind?
Let me tell you something that is very sad to me. There are many children I know, whose parents are Christians but who have no clue about the details of their own parents obedience to the gospel. Oh, they’ve heard the scriptures about it and that is really the most important thing. At least they’ve heard about the obedience of someone! Maybe it was Saul’s conversion or the 3000 nameless, faceless people on Pentecost. At least they’ve heard about someone’s conviction and conversion story. You see, without these living reminders of real people who came to know and follow Jesus, we would have a lifeless system of doctrine. But, praise God, that’s not the way God teaches us about himself! He uses real people with real and living testimonies that connect us with the life-giving good news of our living Savior, Jesus Christ!
I am amazed at how many times in the scriptures Peter and Paul refer to their own experiences to demonstrate the gospel’s message of truth. Luke recorded an entire book of testimonies of men and women who heard the gospel, believed it, repented of their sins, confessed their faith in Jesus Christ as the Lord, the Son of God, and were baptized in the Name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of their sins. Why did he tell all these testimonies of faith and obedience to the gospel? It was to convince and convict Theophilus of the certainty of the truth of the message about Jesus Christ and his Church!