Author: Ron Graham
Why Peter Wrote
—2nd Peter 1:12-21
This lesson in Second Peter looks at the latter part of chapter one. Peter was quite aware that he was writing scripture. He speaks of Paul's letters as scripture (2Peter 3:15-16), so it follows that he would regard his own letters in the same way. Here in 2Peter 1:12-21, the apostle gives his reasons for writing.
1 To remind...
Peter wrote to remind people of truths they’d already learned. He was not teaching his readers very much that was new. He was teaching the old truths that he had taught, and that they had learned, before (cf Acts 17:21).
Peter says, "I will not be negligent to remind you of these things..." (2Peter 1:12), then he makes three statements:
- "You already know [these things]"
- "You have been established in the truth"
- "It is present with you"
In spite of this —even in the light of this— Peter felt that they needed reminding. Peter repeats this idea (of easily forgetting and needing to be reminded) three times in his letter (2Peter 1:9, 1:12, 3:1-2).
It is good and necessary to revisit the truth you have been already taught, just as it is good to learn something new.
So Peter speaks of three things with regard to his reminders...
- His readiness to remind (2Peter 1:12)
- The rightness of reminding (2Peter 1:13)
- The reason for reminding — to stir them up (2Peter 1:13)
2 To Record...
Peter also had a long term reason for writing. He wanted to record his own teachings so that his doctrine would survive him.
- There was an urgency to record, because Peter new his own death was imminent. (2Peter 1:14).
- His long term purpose was to provide a direct and authoritative reference for his teaching so that people could refer to it after his death, and there would be no argument about what he had taught (2Peter 1:15).
3 To Reinforce...
The apostle's doctrine was based upon evidences that he was anxious to reinforce. The verses we come to now lay down very firmly two things on which Peter’s doctrine stood solidly...
- Eye witness accounts. Peter declares that he, along with others, heard God’s own confirmation of Jesus. Peter was one of those who witnessed the transfiguration (2Peter 1:16-18, Matthew 17:1-9)
- The prophetic word. Peter wanted to reinforce the "prophetic word" and make it "more sure". He recommends that we give heed to it and be enlightened by it (2Peter 1:19-21). The prophetic word is the word of both the old testament and new testament prophets (1Peter 1:10-12, Acts 21:9)
As a matter of first importance, Peter warns and guards against putting any twist of personal opinions and interpretations onto the true knowledge which the prophets have passed on to us (2Peter 1:20-21).
A T T T E N T I O N R B W E E Y O A N A O A B I A A E N R O U R P A S C R I P T U R E O R T H O U G H T R A S E R E M I N D E R S T C P S A S E A Y E Y L O R T N U W B E I G E R O A R R S L W N R E D P B I E A E I F E P I H L N Z D S T O E E N E I G H T I N R N T G C S W O R X E C W E D Y H A W U A S E I R E W B R N T N S M C R A I U N O H N E E H O T N R S T I Q S N O R H G R O W N A N T I S
From the grid, pick out some key words for our study of Second Peter 1. You may find several other words too, but try to pick the words that relate to our study. Words go across left to right or down.