Reading the Word
2 Peter 1:12–21 (ESV)
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. 16 For we did not follow cleverly devised myths when we made known to you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but we were eyewitnesses of his majesty. 17 For when he received honor and glory from God the Father, and the voice was borne to him by the Majestic Glory, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased,” 18 we ourselves heard this very voice borne from heaven, for we were with him on the holy mountain. 19 And we have the prophetic word more fully confirmed, to which you will do well to pay attention as to a lamp shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts, 20 knowing this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture comes from someone’s own interpretation. 21 For no prophecy was ever produced by the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit.
Understanding the Word
Peter assures his readers that what they have heard is true. Peter himself testifies to the truthfulness of the gospel through eyewitness testimony. He also reminds his readers that the word of God is not the creation of humanity. It is the word of God himself as God spoke through men inspired by the Holy Spirit.
Applying the Word
Many in the world call into question the Bible’s teaching, especially that concerning the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus. Some who cast doubt on these things even call themselves “Christian”. They claim that Jesus’ resurrection was a spiritual one, not a physical one. Or they say that the resurrection is just a legend and the real thing we need to learn from Jesus’ life on earth is to love one another.
False teaching abounds today as it did in the first century when Peter wrote this letter. But we are reminded that Scripture is the word of God and we can have confidence in it. It teaches us that Jesus was God in the flesh, that he died for the sins of mankind, and that he rose from the dead in victory over sin and death. All those who trust in the person and work of Jesus are forgiven of their sins and given eternal life. What a wonderful gospel!