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Bible Commentaries
2 Peter 1

Dummelow's Commentary on the BibleDummelow on the Bible

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Verses 1-21

Greeeting. Thanksgiving. Exhortation to Progeess in Righteousness from One Who Remembers Jesus Christ

2 Peter 1 may be subdivided into two parts: (a) 2 Peter 1:1-11, greeting followed by a declaration of the glory and virtue of the Christian life, which is a life of continual growth and progress, and requires diligent effort in those who would lead it; (b) 2 Peter 1:12-21, declaration of the Apostle’s care and authority to provide for his readers’ remembrance of these truths—he, who saw the glory of the Transfiguration, is certain of the present power and future return of Jesus Christ, and his testimony completes the testimony of prophecy.

1. Simon] RM ’Symeon,’ the more distinctly Jewish form of the name: cp. Acts 15:14. God and our Saviour Jesus Christ] RV ’our God and Saviour’; Jesus Christ.’ Both titles are given to Christ: cp. Romans 9:5; Hebrews 1:8, and Titus 2:13; (RV).

3. His divine power] i.e. Christ’s: cp. 2 Peter 1:16. Him that hath called us] i.e. the Father, as in 1 Peter 5:10. To glory and virtue] RM ’through glory and virtue.’ The Christian advances towards the eternal kingdom through an earthly life which is touched with the divine glory and virtue.

4. Whereby] i.e. by glory and virtue. Might be] RV ’may become’; such partaking is not yet completed.

5. And beside this, giving all diligence] RV ’Yea, and for this very cause adding on your part all diligence.’ God has granted all things, and for that very reason we must be diligent: cp. v. 10 and Philippians 2:12. Virtue must answer to glory, duty to grace. All this is just in the spirit of 1 Peter 1. Add to your faith virtue] RV ’in your faith supply virtue’: cp. 2 Peter 1:11 (RV). The Christian life is not a mere adding of qualities together, but a growth. Virtue is in faith, as the flower is in the seed; the complete fruit is love: cp. 1 Timothy 1:5;

6. Temperance] RM ’self-control.’

7. Brotherly kindness] RV ’love of the brethren,’ i.e. the Christians: cp. 1 Peter 3:8. Charity] RV ’love,’ which goes beyond the Christian circle to God and all that He has made.

9. Blind, and cannot see far off] As in 1 Peter 1:11, the first statement is less exact than the second. He who cares not to progress loses his spiritual vision; the cleansing he received in baptism, and the eternal kingdom into which he is entering, are out of his sight.

11. An entrance.. ministered.. abundantly] RV ’the entrance.. richly supplied’: cp. Colossians 1:18. Life is a progress into that eternal kingdom to which we already belong.

12. The present truth] RV ’the truth which is with you.

13. Tabernacle] or ’tent,’ i.e. the body (cp. 2 Corinthians 5:1)—a fit thought for those who are sojourners and pilgrims on earth: cp. 1 Peter 1:1; 1 Peter 2:11.

14. Shortly must put off this my tabernacle] RV ’the putting off of my tabernacle cometh swiftly.’ His death was to be violent, and therefore sudden: cp. John 21:18. There will be no time then for admonitions, therefore he will be diligent now, and will leave his words in writing, that they may help the readers after his decease. This word, like ’tabernacle,’ reminds us of the Transfiguration (cp. Luke 9:31), of which the Apostle goes on to speak. The reference in 2 Peter 1:15 seems to be to more than this one letter. Tradition says that St. Mark gave St. Peter’s teaching in his Gospel, and this Gospel may be the promised means of remembrance.

16. Coming] i.e. Second Coming, in that glory of which a glimpse was given at the Transfiguration.

19. We have also a more sure word of prophecy] RV ’And we have the word of prophecy made more sure,’ i.e. OT. prophecy, which is confirmed by this sight and sound: cp. 2 Peter 3:2.

A light that shineth in a dark place] RM ’a lamp shining in a squalid place.’ The word ’squalid’ prepares the reader for the bad state of things described in the next chapter Until the day dawn, etc.] cp. Song of Solomon 2:17; Song of Solomon 4:6. The Second Coming of Christ is meant.

20f. God gave prophecy of old, not to this or that man, but to the whole Jewish Church; so now it belongs to, and must be interpreted by, the whole Church, under the direction of the Holy Spirit, not by the private, contested opinions of individuals.

Bibliographical Information
Dummelow, John. "Commentary on 2 Peter 1". "Dummelow's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/dcb/2-peter-1.html. 1909.
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