12 Therefore I intend always to remind you of these qualities, though you know them and are established in the truth that you have. 13 I think it right, as long as I am in this body, to stir you up by way of reminder, 14 since I know that the putting off of my body will be soon, as our Lord Jesus Christ made clear to me. 15 And I will make every effort so that after my departure you may be able at any time to recall these things. (ESV)
2 Peter 1:12-15
Gift and Command: 2 Peter 1 (Part 2)
Take Hold of What God has Given us Through the Word of God
In 2nd Peter 1:3-11, Peter argues that God has granted to us everything we need to live a godly life, and that therefore we must pursue everything we need to live a godly life. God grants us the internal resources to obey His commands.
In verse 12, Peter shifts his attention to the external resources God grants us in order to walk in holiness. Just as we need to make every effort to possess the virtues of godliness, so we evidently need an external reminder – Peter’s written word (which he will imply in verses 16-21 is actually God’s written word). The full reason for Peter’s urgency won’t be made clear until chapter 2–faced with false teachers, Peter needs to remind his readers that a godly life is the necessary evidence of true salvation so that they not be led into licentiousness and thus prove to be false believers.
The upshot of this is that Peter is providing his readers (and today that means us) with a chain that moves us from justification to glorification: God’s divine power gives all the qualities necessary to persevere in faith; the word of God, which reminds us of both our possession and the necessity of acting on these qualities; and our “making every effort” to possess and practice these qualities, which demonstrate the genuineness of our faith and bring us to receive our final inheritance. And therefore as believers we must diligently pay attention to the word of God, for it is through the word that we are stirred up to practice that which God has already given us.
So let us not neglect the reminder that Peter (with all the prophets and apostles) has left us in scripture; let us study and meditate on it continually, that we might always recall who we are, what God has given, and what God promises to those who make every effort to persevere in faith.
(This was originally posted on the Biblearc blog by Andrew Bywaters on April 16, 2015.)