Thoughts on 2 Peter 1:3-4

Continuing my look at 2 Peter. The verses under consideration in this post are the same that were the subject of my alliteration the other day, viz. 1 Peter 1:3-4 from the ESV1

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.

These two verses pack in so much information. They don’t specifically lay out the gospel, but they do lay out much of the background or foundational story of why the gospel is needed.

Note: Firstly, the source of life and purpose is God’s divine power. It is this power–power emanating and made available by God that allows believers to participate in eternal life and godliness.

Secondly, this divine power is accessed through knowledge of Jesus. It isn’t special knowledge, it isn’t difficult to understand knowledge. But is is not knowledge for its own sake. The knowledge we need is to know Jesus and to believe and have faith in His name. It is knowledge of Jesus, not knowledge about Jesus.

Thirdly, what has driven or moved God to act as He has is His own glory and excellence. We think we’re pretty good. We’re not. We think we deserve to be loved and welcomed into heaven. We don’t. It is only God’s grace and love and mercy that flow from His glory and excellence that makes it possible to be reconciled to God.

Fourthly, God has made precious and very great promises (as Peter phrases it) that all who believe in Jesus and trust in His name receive eternal life. Some such promises are found in John 1:12, Romans 3:21-26, Galatians 2:15-21, Galatians 3:13-14.

Fifthly, These promises, when appropriated through faith, allow believers to take on God’s divine nature and receive eternal life.

Sixthly, the need to redemption and eternal life is outlined in the last sentence of the passage–because our world is spiritually corrupt due to our sinful nature.

The gospel is the promise and guarantee that we can receive and enjoy eternal life through belief and faith in the Lord Jesus and His redemptive work on the cross and through His crucifixion, death, burial, resurrection and ascension. All of these events play a part in the eternal live we can gain.

  1. Scripture quotations taken from the ESV. Copyright by Crossway. ↩︎