Cultures are defined by what they value. The value of various things shape culture. What we ascribe value to here at MIDTOWN Church guides the way we live. More than anything else we value Christ Jesus, His Body & His Word.
In the opening of this letter, Peter stresses how important it is for every follower of Christ to value the gift of eternity by actively and constantly growing spiritually. And in today’s passage he is going to tell us how valuable our instruction manual for that growth is. In order to grow in Christ we need an objective source of guidance & context. We need Scripture. Left to our own devices we will value what makes us feel good and comfortable. God’s perspective is different, often opposite of ours. But we have to trust Scripture in order to make it the standard for our lives
Always consider Scripture to be the voice of your Creator, and honor the gift of His communication.
Peter is going to make a case for why we should have confidence that Scripture is truly ‘God’s Words’. He is going to remind us that He has seen Christ’s Glory and it aligns with what the prophets of Scripture foretold…and that we should pay close attention to God’s Word
2nd Peter 1:12-21(NLT)
12 Therefore, I will always remind you about these things—even though you already know them and are standing firm in the truth you have been taught.
- Since entrance into the Kingdom of our Lord Jesus Christ is at stake…
- ‘I’ is both Peter & The Holy Spirit
- It is not enough to know God’s will & ways and be practicing them…
- WE NEED REMINDERS…constant, specific reminders…
- What are the ‘These Things’ being referenced?
‘These Things’ / 2nd Peter 1:1-11
Having received ‘Biblical / Apostolic / Christ-Given Faith’, we ask for grace & peace to grow in Christ.
By calling us & indwelling us with HIS Spirit, we receive everything we need to live for Christ.
Christ has promised to share eternity and His divine empowerment over sin with His Body so that we may respond by constantly growing as HIS disciples.
As Christ’s Body we are to grow in an intentional ‘Scripture Guided’ way. Any other way is devoid of Christ’s vision for us. We are to devote ourselves to such a lifestyle.
Where might we find details and deeper insights into ‘These Things’???
13 And it is only right that I should keep on reminding you as long as I live. 14 For our Lord Jesus Christ has shown me that I must soon leave this earthly life, 15 so I will work hard to make sure you always remember these things after I am gone.
- God is saying we need reminders… (When God repeats Himself pay attention)
- He is going to leave a legacy to Christ’s Church of valuing scripture
- He is saying he is going to do exactly what God wants to help them & US
16 For we were not making up clever stories when we told you about the powerful coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. We saw His majestic splendor with our own eyes 17 when He received honor and glory from God the Father. The voice from the majestic glory of God said to Him, “This is My dearly loved Son, who brings Me great joy.”
- The story he is referencing is found in Matt. 17 / Mark 9 / Luke 9
- This is the only time on earth He was seen in His total Glory
- He was not just a good Rabbi, or a great Teacher…He IS God!
18 We ourselves heard that voice from heaven when we were with him on the holy mountain. 19 Because of that experience, we have even greater confidence in the message proclaimed by the prophets.
- The ‘Apostolic Wittiness’
- The writings that have been shown to be ‘God’s Word’ are tied to such witness
- That experience only made sense when viewed through the lens of the O.T.
- The prophetic writings and who Jesus is match up
You must pay close attention to what they wrote, for their words are like a lamp shining in a dark place—until the Day dawns, and Christ the Morning Star shines in your hearts.
- What is your idea of close attention?
- Does God’s Word get your ‘close attention’?
- The words of Scripture provide ‘Illumination’
- This is everything we need to understand what is important until Christ returns
20 Above all, you must realize that no prophecy in Scripture ever came from the prophet’s own understanding, 21 or from human initiative. No, those prophets were moved by the Holy Spirit, and they spoke from God.
- Above all that has been mentioned so far and all that will be addressed
- What makes Scripture ‘Holy Writ’ is that God’s Spirit is the Author (not people)
- Those prophets and the Apostles wrote exactly what God moved them to write
How Christ’s Body Values Scripture
We value it by ‘paying close attention’. This means constant study and application!
We value it by considering it ‘Essential’ to our lives. Like food, water & air.
We value it by viewing it ‘Holistically’. Using all of Scripture to understand each part.
We value it by considering it ‘God’s Revelation’. It is not of human origin.
We value it by letting it be our Vision & Guidance. Practically applying it.
We value it by recognizing how Christ’s work in our lives aligns with His Word.
Stay humble & teachable regarding Scripture. Don’t think you have it all figured out.
Filter your experience of Christ through the grid of Scripture. Scripture is the standard, not your experience and emotions.
Recognize the importance of ALL Scripture and focus where your knowledge is weak.