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Strolling Through the Book of First Peter April 11, 2014

Posted by flashbuzzer in Books, Christianity.
Tags: , , , ,

I’ve recently started reading through the First Epistle of Peter with the aid of a commentary by Robert Leighton. I should note that I’ve previously read through 1 Peter. As in my recent stroll through the book of 1 John, I hope to comprehend 1 Peter as a whole. In particular, I would like to compare 1 Peter with the Pauline epistles, the book of Jude and the epistles of John.

I plan to blog about this experience as I read through both the epistle and Leighton’s commentary. Each post will correspond to a specific section in the NIV translation.

For starters, here are my thoughts on 1 Peter 1:1-2.

Summary: Peter begins by stating that he is God’s messenger; he then greets believing Jews in the province of Asia. He states that:

  • God the Father has shown eternal and unchanging love to them
  • they are justified by the application of the blood of God the Son
  • they are sanctified by the work of God the Spirit, who draws them to Him.

Peter concludes by wishing that his readers would receive more of the special favor of God and spiritual peace.

Thoughts: In verse 1, Peter notes that he is writing to believers; Leighton offers some challenging thoughts on this point:

Because of the difference between today’s churches and those of the apostle’s days, we may be rebuked to think that if the apostle were to send us a letter today, he might write, “To the ignorant, profane, malicious, etc.” Like the man who, when he heard the Gospel being read, said afterwards, “Either this is not the Gospel or we are not Christians.” [Dr. Whitaker, Master of St. John’s College, Cambridge, who died in 1595]. In the same way, either the characteristics given in the inscription of these letters are not true characteristics or we are not true Christians.

One must wonder if 17th-Century Scottish churches mostly consisted of nominal believers. In any event, Leighton’s thoughts are a stern warning to modern-day believers, as we must guard against falling into the category of “the ignorant, profane, malicious, etc.” Of course, this raises the question of whether modern-day believers differ from Peter’s audience, and if so, whether these differences are worth discussing. It is safe to say that most modern-day believers do not hew to Acts 2:42-47, but can an impartial observer use that fact to infer that “we are not true Christians?” Could we assert that since our context differs substantially from that of 1 Peter, the manifestation of our piety will differ in many respects from that of a typical 1st-Century Christian?



1. kristsart - April 11, 2014

Hi I am KrisT with Arms of Audio, thought you might be interested in viewing a debate we are hosting between an Atheist and a Calvinist on Sunday. To avoid this going to your spam folder I am writing the website for you to check out and tune in 🙂 wwwdotarmsofaudiodotcom 🙂

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