2 Peter 1:3-11
His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us to his own glory and excellence,  by which he has granted to us his precious and very great promises, so that through them you may become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped from the corruption that is in the world because of sinful desire.  For this very reason, make every effort to supplement your faith with virtue, and virtue with knowledge,  and knowledge with self-control, and self-control with steadfastness, and steadfastness with godliness,  and godliness with brotherly affection, and brotherly affection with love.  For if these qualities are yours and are increasing, they keep you from being ineffective or unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.  For whoever lacks these qualities is so nearsighted that he is blind, having forgotten that he was cleansed from his former sins.  Therefore, brothers, be all the more diligent to confirm your calling and election, for if you practice these qualities you will never fall.  For in this way there will be richly provided for you an entrance into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
It has always been a popular trend for many Christians to choose from the Bible a personal “life verse,” a favorite text to express one’s trust in God’s faithfulness through all of life. We could almost say that if the apostle Peter had a life verse, it more than likely would have been a command spoken to him by Jesus. The verse is recorded in Luke's Gospel 22:32:
“I have prayed for you, Simon, that your faith may not fail. And when you have turned back, strengthen your brothers.”
The word strengthen, which appears in Peter's own letters was originally written or given in Greek as stērigmos; meaning - secure position.
The principle and presence of the word sterigmos can be an illustration of the power of Jesus’ word in Peter’s life until his own crucifixion.
The words spoken to Peter by the Messiah, would lead Peter to keep his faith even in his complete failure and to hold fast to establishing himself as God's choice for His calling. In his circumstances of failure Peter had forgotten that he truly had been chosen for a mission from God. As he writes in these nine verses he retelling his process for re-establishing these eternal foundations.
I am God's Choice
I have a Calling from Him
This is indeed sterigmos - the secured position or place strength in Christ Jesus. The Word of Jesus to Peter in Luke's Gospel were Peter's re-enforcement he needed to re-establish himself as God's choice for His purpose and calling. He hung on to those words long enough to overcome his denial of Jesus and to see Him as his resurrected Messiah and Lord. Peter used those words of Jesus long enough for him to stand up and proclaim the promise the Holy Spirit at Pentecost, and long enough to establish himself and make good on being the choice of Jesus and his calling to become as one of the great and courageous apostles to the early Church. In fact, fulfilling Jesus’ command was now the underlying purpose of his ministry and his letters written to the early Church.
Peter writes in our passage (2 Peter 1:3-11) to strengthen his brothers and sisters and to care for the flock of God, to feed the sheep and their lambs in faithfulness to his new commission from the risen Christ (John 21:15–19). Do you love me? Feed my sheep.
We can also feel in this passage Peter's sense of impending death and the threat of deception posed by false teachers in the early Church that prompts him to be sure that he has fulfilled his Lord’s trust and mission with his very own life and purpose.
In an embittered, cynical, and culturally divided age, either non-trusting or over-trusting of excessive commercial or governmental promises, how we hear and respond to Peter’s first claims will be interesting. He leads in verse 3 with; His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness. In our present-day circumstances many may say, too much -too soon - too good to be true. I believe this is purely a circumstantial or natural response to a foundational and eternal truth that we have somehow lost our way on. Like Peter we see our natural circumstances of personal failure and the failure of people and institutions around us and no longer recall, trust, or re-establish ourselves as His choice, with His calling by proclaiming our greatest promises, using our most effective roadmaps to the Christian faith.
Perhaps some of us might have some deeper knowledge of Peters personal history and volatility and ask; Is this the boisterous, prideful, impulsive, and impatient Peter writing and making claims that reality will not substantiate? Or, is this the fearless, seasoned, humble, and faithful apostle whose strength of spirit and character in life and in death would inspire the exponential growth of the New Testament Church?
My word of wisdom for you as we head forward into Peter's epistle 1:3-11 is that these words will reveal themselves to you as eternal truth. These are the words and the work of the fearless, humble, and inspiring Simon Peter, and not the failing, flailing, and impetuous disciple of Jesus. This passage is indeed the providential and Spirit-breathed word of God as proclaimed or written by a man who had establish himself as the choice of God for the calling and mission of Christ Jesus. Peter’s boldness and equipping in these verses is the Holy Spirit inspiring him to strike a clear blow to the fear and intimidation that threatens to silence and weaken at the most significant and influential times. The Christian’s ability by grace to discern between truth and falsehood, to endure hostility and persecution, and to live with hope and holiness while waiting for the “new heaven and new earth,” all indeed realistic expectations because Christ has given everything we need to make these experiences happen.
At the heart of Peter’s case for this expectation is the character of the life of Jesus, his own glory and goodness. His life, with its virtues of character, is the source of our life and godliness (verse 3) and of his very great and eternal promises (verse 4), which in turn enable us to participate in the divine nature and spiritual realm to navigate the corruption in the world (verse 4). The qualities which we are commanded to add to our faith (verses 5–7) are practical expressions of the character of Jesus, and the effective and productive life he lived adds weight to these qualities in increasing measure (verses 8–9). All of these active and available tools and resources increase our possibility of being more Christ-like. This is why Peter is so confident with his proposition for believers and is the secret of his remarkable fearlessness and strength - which he obviously wants for his readers.
Our readiness for the demands of living in a corrupt world (verse 4) is guaranteed by the fact that Christ’s provisions come to us from his divine power - from God. This is the same power that Paul calls “the power of his resurrection” (Philippians 3:10), which is always supplied by sufficient grace and “made perfect in weakness,” and for the sake of which Paul welcomed physical disability “so that Christ’s power may rest on me” (2 Corinthians 12:9). This is the power Jesus brings to his church, so that Paul could speak of it when the congregation would be “gathered in unity in the name of our Lord Jesus, … and the power of our Lord Jesus is present” (1 Corinthians 5:4). Peter saw this power in Jesus at the time of his transfiguration and expected to see it at the second coming of the Lord (1:16; 3:10). But here it is important to clearly note that he sees Jesus’ power as a gift that has already been given. We do not have to wait for some future action by our Lord - what needs to be done is done.
He provides these resources for us here and now. Provision has been made for us to experience fully right now everything we need for life and godliness, and so be recognized as Christ’s people in this polarized, hostile, anti-christ and godless world. Let's begin our journey to establish or re-establish ourselves as His Choice for His Calling.
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