Second Peter 1:1     




Peter wrote by the Holy Spirit in Second Peter 1:1, “Simon Peter, a servant and an apostle of Jesus Christ, to them that have obtained like precious faith with us through the righteousness of God and our Savior Jesus Christ.” Notice that Peter states that he is a servant before stating that he is an apostle. You have to learn to be a servant before you can become anything else. Jesus came to serve, and we are followers of Jesus.


Peter did not say that he was a servant of a religion, nor a servant to some organization, nor a servant to some other human being. Peter said that he was a servant to Jesus Christ. True Christianity is a personal relationship between a human being and Jesus Christ. If your Christianity is not personal between you and Jesus, then you need to question if you have true Christianity.


Peter said that he was an apostle of Jesus Christ. Peter received his commission and his authority from Jesus. That is why we study this book. That is why we know that this book is part of the Word of God. It was written with all of the authority of Christ Himself, because it was written by one of the apostles. But Peter does not allow his position of authority as an apostle to be an excuse to elevate himself above other believers. Immediately he puts himself on equal ground with other believers. He says that he is writing “to them that have obtained like precious faith.” The reason that all Christians are equal is that we obtained salvation from Jesus Christ in the same way. We are all sinners. None of us deserve anything from God. Jesus died for us all.


Notice that the way that we obtained like precious faith was “through the righteousness of God and our Savior Jesus Christ.” It was not by our own righteousness. We had none. No man has. “There is none that doeth good and sinneth not.” Christ is our righteousness. The reason that a true believer can stand righteous before God is because that believer is given the righteousness of Christ. Because we all obtain our righteousness from Christ, we are all equal.


The phrase that Peter uses, “our God and our Savior Jesus Christ,” is a phrase that emphasizes the deity of Christ. No one but Jesus is mentioned in this way in the Bible in reference to God. You must think of Jesus as your God. Thomas bowed before Jesus and said, “My Lord and my God.” The Pharisees correctly said to Jesus, “Who can forgive sins, but God only?” And Peter writes here, “our God and Savior Jesus Christ.” If Jesus is truly your Savior, then He is also your God. Jesus is God. Jesus said, “Before Abraham was, I am.” He called Himself, the “I AM,” the same thing that Jehovah called Himself when He appeared to Moses. Jesus is Jehovah. Jesus is the manifestation of the Godhead, both in His manifestations in the Old Testament as well as in the New Testament. John 1V1 says, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” “And the Word was made flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.” Jesus is the manifestation of God. That is why Jesus is called the Word. Jesus is the communication of God with man. There is no such thing as knowing God without knowing Jesus. Anyone who claims that He serves God without serving Jesus walks in darkness because Jesus is the Light.


Peter wrote to those who had faith in the same God and Savior in Second Peter 1:2, “Grace and peace be multiplied unto you through the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord.” Interesting that in verse one Jesus is called “Savior,” and now in this verse He is called “Lord.” In order to have “grace and peace multiplied” you will have to progress from Jesus being your Savior to also having Jesus to be your Lord. Peter writes by the Holy Spirit that we can have grace and peace multiplied “through the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord.” The more that I know about Jesus as the Ever-present One, the more that I will have faith that He is with me. The more that I know about Jesus as the All-powerful One, the more that I will have faith that He can and will strengthen me. Faith in Jesus is what will connect me to the grace and peace that He alone can give. “More about Jesus would I know…” Sing that song, and make it your prayer also.


In Second Peter 1:3, Peter expands upon the explanation of what we have available to us because we believe in Christ.  The Bible says, “According as His divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue.” Notice once again that the great things that we have for believing in Jesus come “through the knowledge of him.” Many times people have good intentions, but they do not realize what it takes to get the power of God. It is not church attendance, or the taking of communion, or some emotional experience, or doing more good deeds. It is “through the knowledge of Him


As you know more about the ever-present and all-powerful Jesus, you will have more access to “all things that pertain unto life and godliness.” The things that pertain unto life and godliness have a very different description than most people know. Jesus said that He came so that we could “have life and have it more abundantly.” Those who do not know Jesus as Savior and those who do not walk in fellowship with Him are not growing in this kind of life. They have physical life, but do not have spiritual life.   If you desire this genuine spiritual life but do not seem to find it, maybe you are looking in the wrong place. It is found “through the knowledge of Him


True life, the way that God meant it to be, is tied to godliness. That is why Second Peter 1:3 speaks of the fact that He has called us “to glory and virtue.” Jesus wants to take you to heaven, and so He invites you to Himself so that you can partake of His glory and end up in heaven. But He has also called you to virtue.  “Add to your faith virtue.” “Be ye holy, for I am holy, saith the Lord.” Jesus wants you to believe. Everything starts with belief. “Without faith, it is impossible to please him.” “The just shall live by faith.” We are justified by grace through faith. But the Lord does not want our Christianity to only be made of faith. He wants us to have the kind of faith that changes our actions.


Peter continues with this theme by telling us in Second Peter 1:4 some great things about faith. And then in most of the rest of the book of Second Peter, we are told how true faith should affect the rest of our lives: in our actions, our good works, our preparation for the judgment, and our attitudes toward false teachers. The Bible says in Second Peter 1:4, “Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.” This verse is connected to the previous verse by the word “thereby.” The fact that Jesus has called us “to glory and virtue” is connected to the exceeding great and precious promises.


The promises of God are “exceeding great”. What is greater than the promise of eternal life, or the promise of the forgiveness of sins, or the promise of help, care and love no matter what happens? The promises are “precious” promises. They are valuable. Who could put a price on living in heaven forever? All the diamonds and all the gold and all the jewels piled together could not buy an entrance into the kingdom of God. It comes by means of the promises from the One who cannot lie. Have you taken hold of the promises? If you have, then you are richer than the other inhabitants in this world who know not God.


There is a direct connection between the promises that God made and a human being becoming a child of God. God makes a promise, and when a human being believes the promise, then and only then does the human being reap the benefits of the promise. That is the way that salvation works. It has always worked that way. Salvation is of God. God does the work of salvation. Jesus died on the cross, the Spirit works in the hearts of mankind, and Jesus regenerates with spiritual life the one who believes. It worked that way with Abraham. God made a promise that Abraham would have a son. Abraham believed God’s promise, and because Abraham believed, he was accounted by God as a righteous person. Today God makes a promise that Jesus is the Savior of the world. Those who bow at the feet of Jesus with faith in Him are the ones who enter into the promise.


Once you enter into the promise, you gain the good things and you lose the bad things. You gain becoming a partaker of the divine nature. You lose “the corruption that is in the world through lust.” A “lust” is a strong desire. You “lust” when you desire something outside of the bounds that God has set. You lust when your will becomes more important than God’s will. How foolish and blinded are human beings. They think that if they would only get what they want, then things will be alright. Of course, that is not the case. Lust always results in corruption. Corruption means destruction. How blessed are those who will escape the destruction that comes against humans because of their lusts. They will escape because God made a promise to provide a way of escape. That way is through Christ. By the way, this Bible verse of Second Peter 1:4 is the explanation for what is going on in the world: death and destruction. Why is there so much death and destruction? Because of the lust of the human race. It started with Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden, and it has continued to this day.  Believing in Christ is the only escape from the destruction that is in the world.  Stand on His promises. Believe the promises. Trust Christ and you will escape.


After you trust Christ, you will have some responsibilities toward the One who died for you. Second Peter 1:5 says, “And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge.” Yes, we are saved by faith and by faith alone. We believe the promises about Christ. We believe Christ, and then we are saved because of and by the means of the work that God has done and will do. But Christianity does not stop with faith. Faith is the beginning of a new way and a new life. There are things that God wants us to learn to add to our faith, and these things are listed in verses 5, 6, and 7. It says to give “all diligence” to add these things to your faith.


The first thing that the Bible tells you to add to your faith is virtue. We live in a day of ethical failure and moral depravity of every kind. The world is too much with us; great and small. What a terrible thing that the world has come to. In these last days there are those who call themselves Christians and who claim to have faith, but who have not added virtue to their daily lives. No one has truly turned to Christ, unless it was of their intention to do the right thing. We will not please God, we will not fulfill the will of God, and we will not be useful servants for Christ unless we are virtuous. There must be faithfulness in marriage. Their must be truth, honesty, respect and decency in all of the life of someone who calls himself a Christian. God said, “Be ye holy, for I am holy.” Jesus said, “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father who is in heaven


Add to your faith virtue, and add to your virtue “knowledge.” There are people who believe in Christ, but who just do not know what the Bible teaches on many subjects. They may know the teachings of their church, but that does not mean that they know the teachings of the Bible. Only by studying the Bible can you grow spiritually. Only  through knowing the Bible can you know the difference between false doctrine and true doctrine. And only in the Bible can you find out if the things that you have heard at your church are true or not.


Why have so many supposed Christians failed to do the will of God? They did not add virtue to their faith, and they did not add knowledge to virtue.     





Copyright; 2006 by Charles F. (Rick) Creech
All Rights Reserved