Today's Bible Commentary

  1 & 2 PETER Daily Bible Readings
  Commentary, Cross Reference Bible, and Bible Dictionary  
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James | Ezra | 1 PETER |Nehemiah | 2 PETER | Esther

DateScriptureDaily devotional commentary
June 17-19: Ezra
June 20:1 Peter 1-4 * In Training To Follow Christ's Example, N Sween
June 21: 1 Peter 5 and
  Nehemiah 1-3
* Peter's Encouragement and
* Nehemiah, Cupbearer to the King, N Sween
June 22-25: Nehemiah
June 26:2 Peter 1-3 * Faith, False Teachers, and the Day of the LORD, D Sween
June 27-28: Esther

1 PETER

In Training To Follow Christ's Example
June 20 reading
1 Peter 1-4
Bible Study Aids and
1 Peter Commentary
* God Is Calling You, Legge
* Ray Stedman
INSIGHT: "Now that you have purified yourselves by obeying the truth so that you have sincere love for your brothers, love one another deeply, from the heart. For you have been born again, not of perishable seed, but of imperishable, through the living and enduring word of God." (1:22-23) "You are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light." (2:9)
If we had questions about not seeing things as other people see them from the book of James (like rejoicing in and for our troubles) Peter's letter picks up on the same theme. Early believers were chosen by God yet likely against their will, they were scattered among strangers throughout the world. Believers call a new start "rebirth", and as a living hope rebirth became possible through the LORD's resurrection. There is an inheritance waiting for us who are shielded by God's own power until His time of salvation. Sure, we grieve, are troubled, and may be poor, but faith is more valuable than gold. Wow! See what the Lord has done! See what Jesus Christ will do when he returns to earth. Jesus, whose name fills us with inexpressible and glorious joy, is giving us the goal of our faith - salvation.

Centuries ago, when the Jewish prophets revealed that the Christ would suffer before He won, they also realized He wouldn't come during their time. When Christ did come, his message spread far beyond Israel, carried by people willing to train themselves in the faith and a holy life style. We heard the message and learned that for the promise of salvation, we needed to learn self-discipline and put scriptures into practice while relying on grace. We learned to replace evil desires with holiness, because our Lord is holy and impartial. For His own purposes, God redeemed us from the empty life not with money but with the blood of an unblemished, perfect sacrifice - Jesus Christ Himself. This long-term plan from before creation has far reaching purposes into the future. At the center is the good news that because God raised Jesus from the dead, we believe and have faith and hope in God Himself. So we purify ourselves by hearing the word and doing it. We know we've been born again because of the evidence of loving one another. Men's lives come and go, but the Lord and His word endure forever. While you live, continue to purify yourself. Like a baby, crave to drink in spiritual milk, so you grow in your salvation.

Although Jesus is precious to God, he isn't to a lot of people. But to us who believe, Jesus accepts our living sacrifices and builds us into a spiritual house. We live among pagans, but - praise God - we become part of His chosen people. So we practice living the scriptures we "drink", and even non-believers glorify God when our good deeds become apparent. We become good citizens, valuing freedom - but not to cover up evil. As servants of God, we show respect to believers, the king, our boss or master, and our spouse. Do a good job at work whether your boss is harsh or kind. Learn Christ's way of suffering for others by training our own responses to suffering. Watch for insights and apply the word. When enemies came on strong, Jesus entrusted Himself to God who judges justly, and by his wounds we are healed. Wives who put their husbands ahead of themselves display an inner beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit. Husbands who share the gracious gift of life with their wives have a better prayer life.

Peter continues encouraging Christian behavior based upon scripture, and even to suffer for doing good. Here we learn that Jesus preached to the spirits in prison of people who disobeyed God while Noah was building the ark. Peter demonstrates that the symbolism of Noah and his family being saved through water in the flood applies to water baptism that saves us with a pledge to the new covenant.

When believers lived for pleasure, sin was close by. But "he who has suffered in his body is done with sin." (4:1) We learn that "the gospel was preached even to those who are now dead, so that they might be judged according to men in regard to the body, but live according to God in regard to the spirit." (4:6) Use your self-control to pray and love each other. "Love covers a multitude of sins." (4:8b) Use the gifts God gave you to serve others. Don't be surprised or think it's strange for you to be suffering a painful trial. See it as participating with Christ's sufferings and rejoice that you'll be part of his glory as well! When you suffer according to God's will, commit yourself to the Creator, and continue doing good.

Peter's Encouragement
June 21 reading
1 Peter 5 and Nehemiah 1-3
Bible Study Aids and
1 Peter Commentary
* Shepherds and Sheep, Guzik (How does
Governor Nehemiah compare with NT overseers?)
INSTRUCTIONS: "Humble yourselves, therefore, under God's mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you. Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that your brothers throughout the world are undergoing the same kind of sufferings." (5:6-9)
Peter encourages the elders among the church to shepherd God's flock willingly, keeping in mind that Christ himself is the Chief Shepherd, and that when he returns his shepherds will be rewarded for their care of other believers. Peter encourages the necessity of submission and humility among believers, and gives guidelines on how to develop these positive qualities. Christ's power is not the same as political or physical power of the world. The power Christ offers is love, not lording position over others. The power Christ offers is God Himself, who takes on our problems because he cares for us. (On to Nehemiah 1-3)
June 22-25: Nehemiah

| 1 PETER |Nehemiah| 2 PETER | Esther | John 1,2,3 & Jude

Faith, False Teachers, and the Day of the LORD
June 26 reading
2 Peter 1-3
Bible Study Aids and
2 Peter Commentary
* 2 Peter Sermons,
Asian-Pacific Institute of Biblical Studies
FACTS: "Above all, you must understand that no prophecy of Scripture came about by the prophet's own interpretation. For prophecy never had its origin in the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit." (1:20-21) "The LORD is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance." (3:9)
Peter shows us in Chapter 1:2-4 how having a true knowledge of God has transforming power. Having this power by faith, the Christian should then demonstrate progressive growth towards true knowledge of Jesus. First faith, then goodness, knowledge, self-control, perseverance, godliness, brotherly kindness, and love. (1:3-11)

Chapter 2 tells us what to expect from false teachers (2:1-22) and what false teachers can expect from God. Peter describes false teachers as lawless men (2:11,8) with sinful corrupt desires (2:2,7,10,13-14, 18-19), greedy (2:14-15), arrogant (2:18), self-willed (2:10), and despisers of authority (2:10-12).

Donald Stamps, noted Bible commentator, says this about 2:10-12:
"The false teachers will commercialize the gospel ... one of the chief methods of false ministers is to use stories they have made up to tell impressive but false stories, or to give exaggerated statistics in order to inspire God's people to give money. They glorify themselves and enhance their ministries with these fabricated stories."

In Chapter 3 Peter talks about the scoffers who will arise in the last days. Obviously unbelievers hope that Christ will not return to destroy the ungodly and the world. "But the day of the LORD will come like a thief. The heavens will disappear with a roar; the elements will be destroyed by fire, and the earth and everything in it will be laid bare." Then he asks the question: "Since everything will be destroyed in this way, what kind of people ought you to be?" (3:10-11) "... Make every effort to be found spotless, blameless, and at peace with him." (3:14)

Tomorrow's reading (June 27) Esther 1-4

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Copyright © Nancy Sween, 2003-

Today's Bible commentaries, mostly by Don and Nancy Sween, were first posted daily on the Today's Bible Commentary Blog from November 2003

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