Parkview CHURCH of CHRIST

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 I & 2 PETER: INTRODUCTION


1. It has been said that I Peter is “the most complete summary of the doctrine and ethics of the Gospel of any New Testament     epistle.”

2. I Peter is one the eight letters in the New Testament known as the “General Epistles”.

a. Primarily written to Christians over a widespread area instead of specific places like many of Paul’s epistles (cf. 1:1).

b. Christians from the Jews and Gentiles are addressed:

(1). Jews could identify with the Old Testament imagery – priesthood offering up sacrifices in the house of God;                   God’s view of His people (2:5-9, cf. Exodus 19:5-6)

(2). Gentiles also considered: “…who in times past were not people…” (2:10; Eph. 2:11-12, 19; I Peter 1:14, 4:1-4).

 

I. AUTHOR OF THE BOOKS: PETER “Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ (I Pet. 1:1); Simon Peter, a servant and apostles of     Jesus Christ” (2 Pet. 1:1)

A. Peter also called Simon or Simeon, and Cephas (Acts 15:14, Jn. 1:40-42)

1. Born at Bethsaida (Jn 1:44); Father’s name was Jonas (Matt. 16:17) or John (Jn. 1:42); Andrew was his brother                  and brought him to Christ (Jn. 1:40-42); Peter and Andrew were fishermen in Capernaum where Peter resided                  along with his wife’s mother (Matt. 8:14; I Cor. 9:5)

2. Peter was called by the Lord to be a disciple, and later an apostle (Matt. 4:18-19; Lk. 5:10-11; Matt. 10:2,

    Mk. 3:14-16)

B. Peter’s earnestness and courage made him prominent among the disciples.

1. Name appears first in the list of apostles (Matt. 10:2; Mk. 3:16; Lk. 6:14; Acts 1:13).

2. Often a spokesman from among the twelve apostles (Mk. 8:29; Jn. 6:67-68; Matt. 19:27)

3. Among the close disciples to the Lord (Mk. 5:37, 9:2, 14:33)

4. Cut off the high priest’ servants’ right ear (Jn. 18:10-12)

C. At the last supper, Peter objected to Jesus washing his feet – learned about humility (Jn. 13:1-10; I Pet. 5:5)

1. Boasted of dedication to the Lord – denied Lord three times as predicted by the Lord (Lk. 22:31-33;

    Matt. 26:31-35; 56-75)

D. After Jesus’ resurrection, the Lord sets forth Peter’s work – “tend my sheep” (Jn. 21:15-19; I Pet. 5:1-2)  

E. As an apostle, Peter preached the first sermon opening the way into Christ’s established kingdom – the church

    (Acts 2:14-40, cf. Matt. 16:19).

1. His prominence extends to Acts 12; he is mentioned again as later being in Jerusalem (Acts 15:7)


II. DATE AND PLACE OF WRITING:

A. Probably between A.D. 65-67

B. From “Babylon” (5:13)

1. Literal Babylon on the Euphrates

2. Some say Peter wrote from Rome which is figuratively named “Babylon” due to the persecutions by Nero, after                  the burning of Rome (July 18, A.D. 64)

a. Mark had been with Paul in Rome (Col. 4:10)

b. Mark was with Peter (cf. I Pet. 5:13)


III. THEME AND PURPOSE OF THE BOOKS

A. Theme: “Sufficiency of God’s Grace (I Pet. 5:12)

1. The word “grace” appears 10 times in I Peter (cf. 1:10, 13, 3:7, 4:10, etc.)

B. Theme of 2 Peter: “Responsibilities of Grace” – “Grow in the grace…” (3:18)

C. Purpose: To give instruction (exhortation) and personal encouragement (testimony) to the persecuted Christian. And in

            1. Peter, to fortify and alert the brethren of the false teaching arising from within.

            2. Abiding appeal: You can stand! You must stand!


IV. FEATURES OF THE BOOKS

A. Persecution and trials are in the forefront – suffering mentioned some 12 times in I Peter

1. No hint of bloodshed – but a fiery trial was upon them (1:5-6)

2. Persecution in the form of vile slander (3:16; 4:14-15)

3. Apparently charged also with being disloyal to the state (2:13-17).

4. Persecution was consistent with being in Christ (5:9; cf. 3:18, 4:1)

5. God will strengthen – He cares (5:10, 7)

B. Warning against false doctrine – 2 Peter

1. Those teaching a false freedom – license to sin (2 Peter 2)

2. Those mocking the idea of the Lord’s return

    (2 Peter 3)

3. The remedy is to “grow” in knowledge and character within God’s grace (2 Peter 1:3-12, 3:18)


V. OUTLINE OF THE BOOKS:

A. I Peter

1. The Greeting (1:1-2)

2. The Great Salvation (1:2-12)

a. Genuine thanksgiving for it (1:3-5)

b. Worthy of the test of persecution (1:6-9)

c. A subject of genuine interest to prophets and angels (1:10-12)

3. The Divine Call to Holiness (1:13-2:12)

a. Readiness to be pious toward God and be like Him in character (1:13-17)

b. Based upon the Divine ransom – Christ’s blood (1:18-21)

c. Demands of being set apart (1:22-2:12)

4. The Responsibilities Toward Others (2:13-3:12)

a. Government (2:13-17)

b. Masters (2:18-25)

c. Husbands and wives (3:1-7)

d. Brethren (3:8)

e. Revilers (3:9-12)

5. The Sufferings and Following Glory (3:13-4:19)

a. Proper conduct in suffering (3:13-17 4:7-19)

b. Example of Christ (3:18-4:6)

6. Exhortations and Salutations (5:1-14)

a. Exhortation to Elders (5:1-4)

b. Exhortation to be humble, trustful and watchful (5:5-11)

c. Salutation of peace (5:12-14)

B. 2 Peter

1. Salutation of Grace and Peace (1:1-2)

2. Grow in God’s Grace (1:3-21)

a. Proper growth ends into abundant entrance into the eternal kingdom (1:3-11)

b. Growth demands reminders of important objective truths (1:12-21)

3. Warning of the False Teacher (2:1-21)

a. The work of the false teacher recognized (2:1-3)

b. The power of God to destroy and deliver is proven in history (2:4-9).

c. The heart and character of the false teacher exposed (2:10-16)

d. The consequences of following the false teacher (2:17-21)

4. Stirring the Mind with Reminders (Chapter 3)

a. Warning of mockers who deny the second coming of Christ (3:1-7)

b. Warning that the day of the Lord will come – unexpectedly (3:8-10)

c. The consequences of knowing that the day of the Lord will come (3:11-18)