“His Precious and Magnificent Promises”

by Bethany

Today’s Readings: Isaiah 19-20, 2 Peter 1

Although many scholars think that Jude penned Second Peter [1], Peter’s voice and apostolic authority are behind it.  Irrespective of authorship, however, its purpose is clear: To address a false teaching that arose due to the delay of Jesus’ return.  As the foolishness of the cross [2] and the destruction of the temple isolated the new believers from Judaism, they longed for the Second Coming.  The writer of this letter, therefore, calls on them to wait patiently for their King’s return.

Life and Godliness

He reminds them that the twin goals for the Christian are eternal life in the coming age and godliness in the present one: “His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness … ” [3] [4].  These are “twin” goals because life and godliness are connected – namely, if a person rejects godliness, they reject eternal life [5].  Although godliness cannot earn eternal life, it does evidence a saving faith that leads to eternal life.

His Divine Power

He tells them that the source of these twin goals is the gift of divine power given by God: “His divine power has given …” [6] and, “ … by [His own glory and excellence] He has granted to us …” [7].  In Christ, God has provided our means of justification, sanctification and glorification.  Although this does not give us license to be lazy [8], it does exhort us to humbly acknowledge our reliance on His divine power, glory and excellence.

Knowledge of God

We access His divine power by knowing the Lord: “ … through our knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and goodness” [9] and “ … He has granted to us His precious and magnificent promises …” [10].  In order to deny the false promises that sin offers, we must meditate on the true promises in His Word.  For example, when sin tells us that sharing Christ with our colleague would ruin our friendship or career, we fight this false promise by trusting in God’s promise that the gospel is good news unto salvation for all.

Therefore, as you wait on the return of the Messiah, what are promises that you cling to in order to deny the power of sin and persevere in your pursuit of life and godliness in His divine power?

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[1] Many people believe that Jude wrote 2 Peter because it quotes extensively from the letter that bears his name, Jude.  |  [2] 1 Corinthians 1:18-21  |  [3] 1:3, NASB, emphasis mine  |  [4] See also 2 Peter 1:4, NASB  |  [5] 2 Peter 2:19-20, ESV, “For whatever overcomes a person, to that he is enslaved.  For if, after [the false teachers] have escaped the defilements of the world through the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, they are again entangled in them and overcome [by them], the last state has become worse for them than the first.” See also Hebrews, James. |  [6] 1:3, NASB  |  [7] 1:4, NASB  |  [8] See Philippians 2:12-13, ESV: “ … work out your own salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure” |  [9] 2 Peter 1:3  |  [10] 2 Peter 1:4, NASB

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One Comment to ““His Precious and Magnificent Promises””

  1. “In order to deny the false promises that sin offers, we must meditate on the true promises in His Word. ”

    I love that.

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