Sermon: Peter’s Final Words (2 Peter 1:16-21)

Click Here for Audio 2 peter 1;16-21

Peter’s Final Words 

The Apostle Peter is reaching the end of his life and ministry.  Peter’s mission from here on out is to remind the established church of what they believe and that their faith is a living and vibrant working faith, not a stale, dead faith.  So, even though this church is established, he wants to challenge everyone to make sure they are saved.

He does this by way of reminder…

Vs3- His divine power has granted us all things pertaining to life and godliness.

Vs5- Make every effort to supplement your faith with…

Vs8- If these qualities are yours and increasing they keep you fruitful.

Vs10- Make sure you are saved

Vs12- Peter intends to remind them of these things even though they are already established.

Vs13- Peter says it’s right to stir you up by way of reminder.

Vs15- Peter will also leave behind these reminders in a book or books.

As we’ll see, most of Peter’s reminders are wrapped around the transfiguration.

Please hear God’s Word…

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 something more sure, the prophetic word, 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. [1]

Reminder # 1- Don’t Forget Jesus is Coming Again (1:16)

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.

Peter is wrapping things up and is beginning to remind the Church of some vital fundamental truths.  The first truth he brings up is the second coming of Christ.

The transfiguration had left its full impact on the mind and heart of the Apostle Peter.  Some 30 years later, the glorious picture of Christ was still fresh in Peter’s mind.  Whenever he thought of Christ he thought of that day when he and the others were eyewitnesses of Jesus’ glory.  As he taught about the second coming, he also taught of the glory that Christ possesses.  The majesty Peter saw on that mountain as Jesus was changed is the same majesty He possesses now and will be the majesty we will see if He returns in our lifetime.

He makes the point very clear that the teaching of the second coming of Christ is not a cleverly devised myth.  It’s no made up story to sway the crowd but it is a fact.

There were some false teachers out there who were teaching cleverly devised myths and there are those today who are teaching cleverly devised myths.  Many today would have us think that anything dealing with the supernatural or with miracles is a myth that the church has invented and followed over the years.

Peter wants us to understand that as he prepares to depart, that Jesus is coming again.

The second coming spurs us on to supplement our faith with the qualities mentioned and to live in anticipation of meeting Jesus.

Peter would tell us, trust me, I’ve seen Jesus in all His glory and He is coming back.  We must see too that Peter not only claims to be an eyewitness but says we were.  Remember from Deuteronomy there are to be three witnesses to confirm a story.  Peter has changed from first person singular to first person plural.

Reminder #2- Don’t Forget that Jesus is God’s Son (1:17,18)

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.

The next vital truth Peter longs for his church to believe and trust in and build their confidence on is the fact that Jesus is the Son of God.

Peter’s confidence in this is not second hand knowledge but again, an eyewitness account.  Peter would tell the believers, don’t ever think for a moment that Jesus is not deity.  The deity of Christ, Peter would teach, is not a made up doctrine or a cleverly devised myth but one in which he heard first hand as God the Father declared Jesus to be His beloved Son.  Peter says, we were with Him on the holy mountain, again an eyewitness testimony.

The Apostle John was also up on the mountain that day…

Jn. 1:1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.[2]

Jn. 1:9 The true light, which enlightens everyone, was coming into the world. 10 He was in the world, and the world was made through him, yet the world did not know him. 11 He came to his own, and his own people did not receive him. 12 But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, 13 who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.

14 And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth. [3]

Jn. 20:28 Thomas answered him, “My Lord and my God!”

2 Pet. 1:1 Simeon Peter, a servant and apostle of Jesus Christ, To those who have obtained a faith of equal standing with ours by the righteousness of our God and Savior Jesus Christ: [4]

As followers of Christ, we must never loose sight of Jesus being God’s Son.

 

 

3. Reminder #3- Don’t Forget that it is in the Merits of Christ We are Declared Righteous

It is the fact that the Father is well pleased with His Son that we can have confidence that He will be well pleased with all who are in Christ.

1 jn 4:15 Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides in him, and he in God. [5]

Also by way of reminder, we must always remember that God the Father is perfectly satisfied with the righteousness of His Son… This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased.  This is a wonderful Gospel truth.  The Son is viewed by the Father as perfect.  This is great news for us.  Jesus is the recipient of God’s good pleasure.

Jesus was actively obedient for us.  Here is a truth we must understand if we are going to see just how vitally we need Christ…

If Jesus would have only earned forgiveness of sin for us we would still be unsuitable for heaven.  Simply being made innocent does not cause anyone to go to heaven.  If we were simply innocent, we would be no different than Adam and Eve before the fall.  We still need something else.

We need perfect righteousness.  Only Jesus possesses this.  On at least two occasions God the Father declared Jesus to be perfectly pleasing to Him, the transfiguration and Jesus’ baptism.  On both occasions, we have recorded in the Bible, This is my beloved Son with Him I am well pleased.  We should let the words ring in our ears for a while…With Him I am well pleased…In Jesus alone is the pleasure of God to be found.  In Christ we too are declared righteous before God.

Phil 3:8 Indeed, I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have suffered the loss of all things and count them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which comes through faith in Christ, the righteousness from God that depends on faith— [6]

1 Cor. 1:30; Rom. 5:19

Reminder #4- Don’t Forget the Bible is God’s Word (1:19-21)

19 And we have something more sure, the prophetic word, 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. [7]

As Peter began to make arrangements for his departure, he wanted more than anything else bring into the mind of His church that once he’s gone they still have something even more trustworthy than Peter, James, and John’s eyewitness account of the person and work of Jesus Christ.  The believers who remain after Peter is gone will have the written Word of God.  This written word carries the same authority that the voice that came from the Father that declared Jesus to be His Son.

The written Scriptures carry God’s authority because…

A. It Illuminates Our Lives…

19 And we have something more sure, the prophetic word, 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,

The Bible gives us light on the outside so we can see clearly.

The Bible gives us light on the inside so we can understand spiritual truths.

God’s Word is a lamp that shows us where to walk and where not to walk.  It will expose false teaching and false teachers.  It will give our lives meaning and purpose.  God’s Word will do this as long as it’s dark.

Peter wants us to see that, in fact,there will be a dawn.  When Jesus returns the night will be over.  Then we will have the other Word of God, Jesus Himself and He will be our light just as He was on the night of the transfiguration.

He then uses a strange phrase, morning star or literally light bringer.  When Jesus returns, He will bring the glory of God with Him.  Venus has been given the name morning star.  It is the first sign of light early in the morning.  Jesus, rightfully, has been given the name morning star.  He alone will bring the light of dawn with Him.  When He comes, we as believers will experience glorification.  The light will rise within our hearts.  The same glory seen by the three disciples at His transfiguration will be visibly seen by all.

The written Scriptures carry God’s authority because…

B. They Originated with God

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. [8]

Because Scripture is God originated, it can be trusted.  Scripture is where the Christian is to turn for truth and comfort in this present world.

In the days of Peter, false teachers were coming out of the woodwork and promoting all types of agendas and new ideas…as Peter calls them, cleverly devised myths. 

These clever made up doctrines would lead the church away if she were not founded on the Bible.

The Scriptures did not ever have there beginning with man.  You might say, I thought men actually wrote the Bible.  In saying that, you’re about half right.  Men did write it, but notice what Peter says…

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. [9]

Here is a very important concept concerning biblical inspiration.  Here’s how it works.

The Holy Spirit (pnuema) would carry the writer along as he wrote.  The original language has in mind a sailboat being carried along by the wind (pnuema).

It is this deposit of God’s Word that Peter would leave behind after he had gone.

To sum up what Peter has taught us today is to remember that:

1. Jesus is coming again in amazing glory

2. Jesus is God’s Son

3. Jesus’ merits are the currency God recognizes

4. God’s Word is the fountain of truth

These were the reminders Peter was to leave His church after he was gone.  These vital pieces of their faith would be what kept them in the faith even after the Apostles were gone.  These same truths are what will carry us through.

Are you living out your faith based on these four vital truths given by Peter?

……


[1] The Holy Bible : English standard version. 2001 (2 Pe 1:16–21). Wheaton: Standard Bible Society.

[2] The Holy Bible : English standard version. 2001 (Jn 1:1). Wheaton: Standard Bible Society.

[3] The Holy Bible : English standard version. 2001 (Jn 1:9–14). Wheaton: Standard Bible Society.

[4] The Holy Bible : English standard version. 2001 (2 Pe 1:1). Wheaton: Standard Bible

Society.

[5] The Holy Bible : English standard version. 2001 (1 Jn 4:15). Wheaton: Standard Bible Society.

[6] The Holy Bible : English standard version. 2001 (Php 3:8–9). Wheaton: Standard Bible Society.

[7] The Holy Bible : English standard version. 2001 (2 Pe 1:16–21). Wheaton: Standard Bible Society.

[8] The Holy Bible : English standard version. 2001 (2 Pe 1:16–21). Wheaton: Standard Bible Society.

[9] The Holy Bible : English standard version. 2001 (2 Pe 1:16–21). Wheaton: Standard Bible Society.

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