From his morning devotional study: David Niednagel, Pastor and Teacher, Evansville, IN. David uses the S.O.A.P. method for his morning study time: study, observe, apply, pray.
What will you remember?
2 Peter 1:12-15
1:12 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. ESV
Peter acknowledges his readers already know what he is teaching – but he also remembers that Jesus said the main reason some “believers/followers” don’t bear fruit, is “the cares of this world and the deceitfulness of riches” choke out the wonderful promises of God. (Matt 13:22) Everyone is busy. We have hundreds of thoughts that come through our minds every day that pull our attention away from the eternal to the here and now. Peter himself vowed he would never disown or betray Jesus, even if everyone else did, but within a few hours he did. How is that possible? Fear, stress, pressure right now cause us to seek relief right now and to not think about the future, especially about after we die.
So Peter continues the theme of 1Peter that just as Jesus suffered before He experienced glory, so must we. Don’t be surprised when suffering comes. Expect it! Daily! If there are days we don’t suffer, wonderful! But don’t take that as the norm or expect it to continue. In our day, we expect each day to be pleasant and full of “blessing”, and forget that suffering for Christ IS a blessing, and a love –gift we can give to Him. Peter knows we need continual reminders, or we will get soft and focus more on escaping hardship than on taking up a cross daily and following Jesus.
In :14 Peter said, “I know that the putting off of my body will be soon, as our Lord Jesus Christ made clear to me.” Just like most of us remember some sayings our parents repeated many times as we grew up, Peter wanted his readers to be crystal clear long after he was gone, that faith in Christ will result in a changed life. We will want to meditate on His Words and “obey all He has commanded us”. If we don’t have those desires, it is doubtful that we have understood the gospel of grace.
Lord, thank You that we have Your Word in our language and can go back to it every day, and I thank You for the desire You have given me to do that, and the habits I have been able to establish. Lord, may my heart genuinely seek You all my life, and use me to help others establish the same desires and habits. I pray that for my family, but also for many others I have discipled over the years. Help me/us “make every effort” to add these qualities to the truths we believe. May we never be hypocritical and unfruitful, but zealous to show Your life in us. Amen