2 Peter: Last Will & Testament
The second epistle of Peter is a brief letter of reminders for Christians. Peter urges his readers to make every effort to grow in their faith, to remember that the promises of God (spoken by the prophets and apostles) are trustworthy, and to beware those who teach otherwise.
After Jesus rose from the grave, He had a special conversation with Peter about how the apostle would die:
“Truly, truly, I say to you, when you were younger, you used to gird yourself and walk wherever you wished; but when you grow old, you will stretch out your hands and someone else will gird you, and bring you where you do not wish to go.” Now this He said, signifying by what kind of death he would glorify God (Jn 21:18–19). 64–65 A.D
Peter knows that he will die for the Lord, and that his time was drawing near.
There’s one more “goodbye” letter in the New Testament: Paul’s second letter to Timothy. Both apostles, when they knew they were going to die soon, wrote letters to remind others of what was important.
Add to your faith…
2 Peter 1:10 So, dear brothers and sisters, work hard to prove that you really are among those God has called and chosen. Do these things, and you will never fall away.
From Jesus himself…”many are called, but few are chosen.”
All Christians are given a royal summons by God himself, inviting us to the glorious privilege of co-reigning with Christ in the life to come.
Romans 8:17 And since we are his children, we are his heirs. In fact, together with Christ we are heirs of God’s glory. But if we are to share his glory, we must also share his suffering.
2 Timothy 2:12-13 If we endure hardship, we will reign with him.
If we deny him, he will deny us.
13 If we are unfaithful, he remains faithful, for he cannot deny who he is.
2 Peter 3:2 I want you to remember what the holy prophets said long ago and what our Lord and Savior commanded through your apostles.
False teachers will try to deceive the church. They’ll introduce divisive teachings that encourage people to indulge in the sins of the world: a twisted, disgusting take on Jesus’ grace.
Scriptural truth is from God
1 Peter 1:25 But the word of the Lord remains forever. And that word is the Good News that was preached to you.
Scriptural truth and prophecy are from God, not man. Peter and the rest of the apostles would die, but the word would remain forever (1 Pe 1:25). Furthermore, the teaching that Peter and the apostles had passed on wasn’t just something they’d dreamed up; they were eyewitnesses (2 Pe 1:16–18). And all those Old Testament prophets? They were under the influence of the Holy Spirit (2 Pe 1:21).
All Scripture is given by God
2 Timothy 3:16 All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right.
Mark 9:2-8 As the men watched, Jesus’ appearance was transformed, and his clothes became dazzling white, far whiter than any earthly bleach could ever make them. Then Elijah and Moses appeared and began talking with Jesus… Then a cloud overshadowed them, and a voice from the cloud said, “This is my dearly loved Son. Listen to him.” Suddenly, when they looked around, Moses and Elijah were gone, and they saw only Jesus with them.
- Peter was an eyewitness of Jesus’ majesty when He was transfigured, and so he is not just following a made-up story of Jesus. He was there. He heard the voice of God affirming Jesus as His Son (2 Pe 1:17). Therefore, Jesus’ ministry validates the prophets’ writings (the Old Testament).
- And even those prophets weren’t just making things up. They were “moved by the Holy Spirit” when they spoke for God (2 Pe 1:21).
2 Peter 1:16-18 For we were not making up clever stories when we told you about the powerful coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. We saw his majestic splendor with our own eyes when he received honor and glory from God the Father. The voice from the majestic glory of God said to him, “This is my dearly loved Son, who brings me great joy.” We ourselves heard that voice from heaven when we were with him on the holy mountain.
Peter holds the teachings of the apostles in high regard—on the level of the Old Testament prophets (2 Pe 3:2). The apostles included James, Matthew, and John, who went on to write some of the books in our New Testament.
Peter especially esteems Paul’s letters—even regarding them as Scripture themselves (2 Pe 3:15–16).
The Old Testament Prophets
2 Peter 1:21 or from human initiative. No, those prophets were moved by the Holy Spirit, and they spoke from God.
2 Peter 2:1-3 But there were also false prophets in Israel, just as there will be false teachers among you. They will cleverly teach destructive heresies and even deny the Master who bought them. In this way, they will bring sudden destruction on themselves. Many will follow their evil teaching and shameful immorality. And because of these teachers, the way of truth will be slandered. In their greed they will make up clever lies to get hold of your money.
Make Every Effort…
2 Peter 3:14 And so, dear friends, while you are waiting for these things to happen, make every effort to be found living peaceful lives that are pure and blameless in his sight. And remember, our Lord’s patience gives people time to be saved. This is what our beloved brother Paul also wrote to you with the wisdom God gave him— speaking of these things in all of his letters.
- Remember to be diligent (2 Pet 1:1–15)
- True prophets and teachers (2 Pet 1:16–21)
- False prophets and teachers (2 Pet 2)
- Remember the true prophecies (2 Pet 3:1–13)
- Be diligent; be on guard (2Pet 3:14–18)