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Bible Commentaries

Robertson's Word Pictures in the New Testament
2 Peter 1



Other Authors
Verse 1

Simon Peter (Σιμων ΠετροςSimōn Petros). Aleph A K L P have ΣψμεωνSymeōn as in Acts 15:14, while B has ΣιμωνSimōn The two forms occur indifferently in 1 Macc. 2:3, 65 for the same man.

Servant and apostle (δουλος και αποστολοςdoulos kai apostolos). Like Romans 1:1; Titus 1:1.

To them that have obtained (τοις λαχουσινtois lachousin). Dative plural articular participle second aorist active of λαγχανωlagchanō old verb, to obtain by lot (Luke 1:9), here with the accusative (πιστινpistin) as in Acts 1:17.

Like precious (ισοτιμονisotimon). Late compound adjective (ισοςisos equal, τιμηtimē honor, price), here only in N.T. But this adjective (Field) is used in two ways, according to the two ideas in τιμηtimē (value, honor), either like in value or like in honor. This second idea is the usual one with ισοτιμοςisotimos (inscriptions and papyri, Josephus, Lucian), while πολυτιμοςpolutimos has the notion of price like τιμηtimē in 2 Peter 1:7, 2 Peter 1:19; 2 Peter 2:4, 2 Peter 2:6. The faith which they have obtained is like in honor and privilege with that of Peter or any of the apostles.

With us (ημινhēmin). Associative-instrumental case after ισοτιμονisotimon Equal to τηι ημωνtēi hēmōn (the faith of us).

In the righteousness (εν δικαιοσυνηιen dikaiosunēi). Definite because of the preposition ενen and the following genitive even though anarthrous. The O.T. sense of δικαιοσυνηdikaiosunē applied to God (Romans 1:17) and here to Christ.

Of our God and Saviour Jesus Christ (του τεου ημων και σωτηρος Ιησου Χριστουtou theou hēmōn kai sōtēros Iēsou Christou). So the one article (τουtou) with τεουtheou and σωτηροςsōtēros requires precisely as with του κυριου ημων και σωτηρος Ιησου Χριστουtou kuriou hēmōn kai sōtēros Iēsou Christou (of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ), one person, not two, in 2 Peter 1:11 as in 2 Peter 2:20; 2 Peter 3:2, 2 Peter 3:18. So in 1 Peter 1:3 we have ο τεος και πατηρho theos kai patēr (the God and Father), one person, not two. The grammar is uniform and inevitable (Robertson, Grammar, p. 786), as even Schmiedel (Winer-Schmiedel, Grammatik, p. 158) admits: “Grammar demands that one person be meant.” Moulton (Prol., p. 84) cites papyri examples of like usage of τεοςtheos for the Roman emperors. See the same idiom in Titus 2:13. The use of τεοςtheos by Peter as a predicate with Jesus Christ no more disproves the Petrine authorship of this Epistle than a like use in John 1:1 disproves the Johannine authorship of the Fourth Gospel and the same use in Titus 2:13 disproves the genuineness of Titus. Peter had heard Thomas call Jesus God (John 20:28) and he himself had called him the Son of God (Matthew 16:16).

Verse 2

Be multiplied (πλητυντειηplēthuntheiē). First aorist passive optative of πλητυνωplēthunō in a wish for the future (volitive use) as in 1 Peter 1:2; Judges 1:2.

In the knowledge (εν επιγνωσειen epignōsei). Full (additional, επιepi) knowledge as in 2 Peter 1:8 (only γνωσιςgnōsis in 2 Peter 1:5, 2 Peter 1:6; 2 Peter 3:18), but επιγνωσινepignōsin again in 2 Peter 1:3, 2 Peter 1:8; 2 Peter 2:20. As in Colossians, so here full knowledge is urged against the claims of the Gnostic heretics to special γνωσιςgnōsis God and of Jesus our Lord (του τεου και Ιησου του κυριου ημωνtou theou kai Iēsou tou kuriou hēmōn). At first sight the idiom here seems to require one person as in 2 Peter 1:1, though there is a second article (τουtou) before κυριουkuriou and ΙησουIēsou is a proper name. But the text here is very uncertain. Bengel, Spitta, Zahn, Nestle accept the short reading of P and some Vulgate MSS. and some minuscles with only του κυριου ημωνtou kuriou hēmōn (our Lord) from which the three other readings may have come. Elsewhere in 2 Peter γνωσιςgnōsis and επιγνωσιςepignōsis are used of Christ alone. The text of 2 Peter is not in a good state of preservation.

Verse 3

Seeing that his divine power hath granted unto us (ως ημιν της τειας δυναμεως αυτου δεδωρημενηςhōs hēmin tēs theias dunameōs autou dedōrēmenēs). Genitive absolute with the causal particle ωςhōs and the perfect middle participle of δωρεωdōreō old verb, to bestow (δωρεαdōrea gift), usually middle as here, in N.T. elsewhere only Mark 15:45. ΑυτουAutou refers to Christ, who has “divine power” (της τειας δυναμεωςtēs theias dunameōs), since he is τεοςtheos (2 Peter 1:1). ΤειοςTheios (from τεοςtheos) is an old adjective in N.T. here and 2 Peter 1:4 only, except Acts 17:29, where Paul uses το τειονto theion for deity, thus adapting his language to his audience as the papyri and inscriptions show. The use of τειοςtheios with an imperial connotation is very common in the papyri and the inscriptions. Deissmann (Bible Studies, pp. 360-368) has shown the singular linguistic likeness between 2 Peter 1:3-11 and a remarkable inscription of the inhabitants of Stratonicea in Caria to Zeus Panhemerios and Hecate dated a.d. 22 (in full in C I H ii No. 2715 a b). One of the likenesses is the use of της τειας δυναμεωςtēs theias dunameōs Peter may have read this inscription (cf. Paul in Athens) or he may have used “the familiar forms and formulae of religious emotion” (Deissmann), “the official liturgical language of Asia Minor.” Peter is fond of δυναμιςdunamis in this Epistle, and the δυναμιςdunamis of Christ “is the sword which St. Peter holds over the head of the False Teachers” (Bigg).

All things that pertain unto life and godliness (παντα τα προς ζωην και ευσεβειανpanta ta pros zōēn kai eusebeian). “All the things for life and godliness.” The new life in Christ who is the mystery of godliness (1 Timothy 3:16). ΕυσεβειαEusebeia with its cognates (ευσεβησ ευσεβωσ ευσεβεωeusebēsευeusebōsσεβομαιeusebeō) occurs only in this Epistle, Acts, and the Pastoral Epistles (from του καλεσαντοςeu well, and καλεωsebomai to worship).

Of him that called us (δια δοχης και αρετηςtou kalesantos). Genitive of the articular first aorist active participle of ιδιαι δοχηι και αρετηιkaleō Christ called Peter and all other Christians.

By his own glory and virtue (ιδιοςdia doxēs kai aretēs). So B K L, but Aleph A C P read αρετηidiāi doxēi kai aretēi (either instrumental case “by” or dative “to”). Peter is fond of idios (own, 1 Peter 3:1, 1 Peter 3:5; 2 Peter 2:16, 2 Peter 2:22, etc.). “Glory” here is the manifestation of the Divine Character in Christ. For aretē see note on 1 Peter 2:9, note on Philemon 4:8, and note on 2 Peter 1:5.

Verse 4

Whereby (δι ωνdi' hōn). Probably the “glory and virtue” just mentioned, though it is possible to take it with παντα τα προςpanta ta pros etc., or with ημινhēmin (unto us, meaning “through whom”).

He hath granted (δεδωρηταιdedōrētai). Perfect middle indicative of δωρεωdōreō for which see 2 Peter 1:3.

His precious and exceeding great promises (τα τιμια και μεγιστα επαγγελματαta timia kai megista epaggelmata). ΕπαγγελμαEpaggelma is an old word (from επαγγελλωepaggellō) in place of the common επαγγελιαepaggelia in N.T. only here and 2 Peter 3:13. ΤιμιοςTimios (precious, from τιμηtimē value), three times by Peter (1 Peter 1:7 of faith; 1 Peter 1:19 of the blood of Christ; 2 Peter 1:4 of Christ‘s promises). ΜεγισταMegista is the elative superlative used along with a positive adjective (τιμιαtimia).

That ye may become (ινα γενηστεhina genēsthe). Purpose clause with ιναhina and second aorist middle subjunctive of γινομαιginomai these (δια τουτωνdia toutōn). The promises.

Partakers (κοινωνοιkoinōnoi). Partners, sharers in, for which word see 1 Peter 5:1.

Of the divine nature (τειας πυσεωςtheias phuseōs). This phrase, like το τειονto theion in Acts 17:29, “belongs rather to Hellenism than to the Bible” (Bigg). It is a Stoic phrase, but not with the Stoic meaning. Peter is referring to the new birth as 1 Peter 1:23 (αναγεγεννημενοιanagegennēmenoi). The same phrase occurs in an inscription possibly under the influence of Mithraism (Moulton and Milligan‘s Vocabulary).

Having escaped (αποπυγοντεςapophugontes). Second aorist active participle of αποπευγωapopheugō old compound verb, in N.T. only here and 2 Peter 2:18-20, with the ablative here (πτοραςphthorās old word from πτειρωphtheirō moral decay as in 2 Peter 2:12) and the accusative there.

By lust (εν επιτυμιαιen epithumiāi). Caused by, consisting in, lust. “Man becomes either regenerate or degenerate” (Strachan).

Verse 5

Yea, and for this very cause (και αυτο τουτο δεkai auto touto de). Adverbial accusative (αυτο τουτοauto touto) here, a classic idiom, with both καιkai and δεde Cf. και τουτοkai touto (Philemon 1:29), τουτο μεντουτο δεtouto men- παρεισενεγκαντεςtouto de (Hebrews 10:33). “The soul of religion is the practical part” (Bunyan). Because of the new birth and the promises we have a part to play.

Adding on your part (παρεισπερωpareisenegkantes). First aorist active participle of εισπερωpareispherō old double compound, to bring in (παραeispherō), besides (σπουδην πασανpara), here only in N.T.

All diligence (σπευδωspoudēn pāsan). Old word from πασαν σπουδηνspeudō to hasten (Luke 19:5.). This phrase (ποιουμενοςpāsan spoudēn) occurs in Judges 1:3 with ισπερεσταιpoioumenos and on the inscription in Stratonicea (2 Peter 1:3) with εν τηι πιστει υμωνispheresthai (certainly a curious coincidence, to say the least, though common in the Koiné).

In your faith (πιστιςen tēi pistei humōn). Faith or αγαπηpistis (strong conviction as in Hebrews 11:1, Hebrews 11:3, the root of the Christian life Ephesians 2:8) is the foundation which goes through various steps up to love (ενagapē). See similar lists in James 1:3; 1 Thessalonians 1:3; 2 Thessalonians 1:3.; Galatians 5:22.; Romans 5:3.; Romans 8:29. Hermas (Vis. iii. 8. 1-7) has a list called “daughters” of one another. Note the use of επιχορηγησατεen (in, on) with each step.

Supply (επιχορηγεωepichorēgēsate). First aorist active imperative of επιepichorēgeō late and rare double compound verb (χορηγεωepi and χορηγοςchorēgeō 1 Peter 4:11 from χοροςchorēgos chorus-leader, ηγεομαιchoros and αρετηνhēgeomai to lead), to fit out the chorus with additional (complete) supplies. Both compound and simplex (more common) occur in the papyri. In 2 Peter 1:11 and already in 2 Corinthians 9:10; Galatians 3:5; Colossians 2:19.

Virtue (γνωσινaretēn). Moral power, moral energy, vigor of soul (Bengel). See 2 Peter 1:3.

Knowledge (gnōsin). Insight, understanding (1 Corinthians 16:18; John 15:15).

Verse 6

Temperance (την εγκρατειανtēn egkrateian). Self-control. Old word (from εγκρατηςegkratēs ενen and κρατοςkratos one holding himself in as in Titus 1:8), in N.T. only here, Acts 24:25; Galatians 5:23. The opposite of the πλεονεχιαpleonexia of the heretics.

Patience (την υπομονηνtēn hupomonēn). For which see James 1:3.

Godliness (την ευσεβειανtēn eusebeian). For which see 2 Peter 1:3.

Verse 7

Love of the brethren (την πιλαδελπιανtēn philadelphian). See 1 Peter 1:22.

Love (την αγαπηνtēn agapēn). By deliberate choice (Matthew 5:44). Love for Christ as the crown of all (1 Peter 1:8) and so for all men. Love is the climax as Paul has it (1 Corinthians 13:13).

Verse 8

For if these things are yours and abound (ταυτα γαρ υμιν υπαρχοντα και πλεοναζονταtauta gar humin huparchonta kai pleonazonta). Present active circumstantial (conditional) participles neuter plural of υπαρχωhuparchō and πλεοναζωpleonazō (see 1 Thessalonians 3:12) with dative case υμινhumin “these things existing for you (or in you) and abounding.”

They make you to be (κατιστησινkathistēsin). “Render” (present active indicative of κατιστημιkathistēmi old verb, James 3:6), singular because ταυταtauta neuter plural.

Not idle nor unfruitful (ουκ αργους ουδε ακαρπουςouk argous oude akarpous). Accusative predicative plural with υμαςhumas understood, both adjectives with alpha privative, for αργοςargos see James 2:20 and for ακαρποςakarpos Matthew 13:22.

Knowledge (επιγνωσινepignōsin). “Full (additional) knowledge” as in 2 Peter 1:2.

Verse 9

He that lacketh these things (ωι μη παρεστιν ταυταhōi mē parestin tauta). “To whom (dative case of possession) these things are not (μηmē because a general or indefinite relative clause).”

Seeing only what is near (μυωπαζωνmuōpazōn). Present active participle of μυωπαζωmuōpazō a rare verb from μυωπςmuōps (in Aristotle for a near-sighted man) and that from μυεω τους ωπαςmueō tous ōpas (to close the eyes in order to see, not to keep from seeing). The only other instance of μυωπαζωmuōpazō is given by Suicer from Ps. Dion. Eccl. Hier. ii. 3 (μυωπασουσηι και αποστρεπομενηιmuōpasousēi kai apostrephomenēi) used of a soul on which the light shines (blinking and turning away). Thus understood the word here limits τυπλοςtuphlos as a short-sighted man screwing up his eyes because of the light.

Having forgotten (λητην λαβωνlēthēn labōn). “Having received forgetfulness.” Second aorist active participle of λαμβανωlambanō and accusative λητηνlēthēn old word, from λητομαιlēthomai to forget, here only in N.T. See 2 Timothy 1:5 for a like phrase υπομνησιν λαβωνhupomnēsin labōn (having received remembrance).

The cleansing (του καταρισμουtou katharismou). See Hebrews 1:3 for this word for the expiatory sacrifice of Christ for our sins as in 1 Peter 1:18; 1 Peter 2:24; 1 Peter 3:18. In 1 Peter 3:21 Peter denied actual cleansing of sin by baptism (only symbolic). If there is a reference to baptism here, which is doubtful, it can only be in a symbolic sense.

Old (παλαιpalai). Of the language as in Hebrews 1:1.

Verse 10

Wherefore (διοdio). Because of the exhortation and argument in 2 Peter 1:5-9.

Give the more diligence (μαλλον σπουδασατεmāllon spoudasate). “Become diligent (first aorist ingressive active imperative of σπουδαζωspoudazō as in 2 Timothy 2:15; 2 Peter 1:15) the more” (μαλλονmallon not less).

To make (ποιεισταιpoieisthai). Present middle infinitive of ποιεωpoieō to make for yourselves.

Calling and election (κλησιν και εκλογηνklēsin kai eklogēn). Both words (κλησινklēsin the invitation, εκλογηνeklogēn actual acceptance). See for εκλογηeklogē 1 Thessalonians 1:4; Romans 9:11.

If ye do (ποιουντεςpoiountes). Present active circumstantial (conditional) participle of ποιεωpoieō “doing.”

Ye shall never stumble (ου μη πταισητε ποτεou mē ptaisēte pote). Strong double negative (ου μη ποτεou mē pote) with first aorist active subjunctive of πταιωptaiō old verb to stumble, to fall as in James 2:10; James 3:2.

Verse 11

Thus (ουτωςhoutōs). As shown in 2 Peter 1:10.

Shall be supplied (επιχορηγητησεταιepichorēgēthēsetai). Future passive of επιχορηγεωepichorēgeō for which see 2 Peter 1:5. You supply the virtues above and God will supply the entrance (η εισοδοςhē eisodos old word already in 1 Thessalonians 1:9, etc.).

Richly (πλουσιωςplousiōs). See Colossians 3:16 for this adverb.

Into the eternal kingdom (εις την αιωνιον βασιλειανeis tēn aiōnion basileian). The believer‘s inheritance of 1 Peter 1:4 is here termed kingdom, but “eternal” (αιωνιονaiōnion feminine same as masculine). Curiously again in the Stratonicea inscription we find της αιωνιου αρχηςtēs aiōniou archēs (of the eternal rule) applied to “the lords of Rome.” But this is the spiritual reign of God in men‘s hearts here on earth (1 Peter 2:9) and in heaven.

Of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ (του κυριου ημων και σωτηρος Ιησου Χριστουtou kuriou hēmōn kai sōtēros Iēsou Christou). For which idiom see note on 2 Peter 1:1.

Verse 12

Wherefore (διοdio). Since they are possessed of faith that conduces to godliness which they are diligently practising now he insists on the truth and proposes to do his part by them about it.

I shall be ready always (μελλησω αειmellēsō aei). Future active of μελλωmellō (Matthew 24:6), old verb, to be on the point of doing and used with the infinitive (present, aorist, or future). It is not here a periphrastic future, but rather the purpose of Peter to be ready in the future as in the past and now (Zahn).

To put you in remembrance (υμας υπομιμνησκεινhumas hupomimnēskein). Present active infinitive of υπομιμνησκωhupomimnēskō old causative compound (υπο μιμνησκωhupoπεριmimnēskō like our suggest), either with two accusatives (John 14:26) or περι τουτωνperi with the thing as here), “to keep on reminding you of those things” (καιπερ ειδοταςperi toutōn).

Though ye know them (οιδαkaiper eidotas). Second perfect active concessive participle of υμαςoida agreeing (acc. plural), with εστηριγμενουςhumas Cf. Hebrews 5:8.

Are established (στηριζωestērigmenous). Perfect passive concessive participle of στηρισονstērizō (1 Peter 5:10). The very verb (εν τηι παρουσηι αλητειαιstērison) used by Jesus to Peter (Luke 22:32).

In the truth which is with you (παρουσηιen tēi parousēi alētheiāi). “In the present truth” (the truth present to you), παρειμιparousēi present active participle of παρωνpareimi to be beside one. See Colossians 1:6 for this use of parōn Firmly established in the truth, but all the same Peter is eager to make them stronger.

Verse 13

I think it right (δικαιον ηγουμαιdikaion hēgoumai). Peter considers this to be his solemn duty, “right” (δικαιονdikaion). Cf. Philemon 3:1; Ephesians 6:1.

So long as (επ οσονeph' hoson). For this phrase see Matthew 9:15; Romans 11:13.

Tabernacle (σκηνωματιskēnōmati). Old word, in literal sense in Deuteronomy 33:18 for the usual σκηνηskēnē (Peter‘s word at the Transfiguration, Mark 9:5), earliest use (in N.T. only here, 2 Peter 1:14; Acts 7:46 of the tabernacle of the covenant) in this metaphorical sense of life as a pilgrimage (1 Peter 1:1; 1 Peter 2:11), though Paul has σκηνοςskēnos so in 2 Corinthians 5:1, 2 Corinthians 5:4. Peter feels the nearness of death and the urgency upon him.

To stir you up (διεγειρειν υμαςdiegeirein humas). Present active infinitive of διεγειρωdiegeirō late (Arist., Hippocr., Herodian, papyri), perfective (διαdia = thoroughly) compound, to wake out of sleep (Mark 4:39), “to keep on rousing you up.”

By putting you in remembrance (εν υπομνησειen hupomnēsei). Old word, from υπομιμνησκωhupomimnēskō (2 Peter 1:12), in N.T. only here, 2 Peter 3:1; 2 Timothy 1:5. “By way of reminding you.”

Verse 14

The putting off of my tabernacle (η αποτεσις του σκηννωματος μουhē apothesis tou skēnnōmatos mou). For αποτεσιςapothesis see note on 1 Peter 3:21 and for σκηνωμαskēnōma see note on 2 Peter 1:13. For the metaphor see 2 Corinthians 5:3.

Cometh swiftly (ταχινη εστινtachinē estin). Late adjective (Theocritus, lxx, inscription), in N.T. only here and 2 Peter 2:1. It is not clear whether ταχινοςtachinos means soon or speedy as in Isaiah 59:7 and like ταχυςtachus in James 1:19, or sudden, like ταχυςtachus in Plato (Republ. 553 D). Either sense agrees with the urgent tone of Peter here, whether he felt his death to be near or violent or both.

Signified unto me (εδηλωσεν μοιedēlōsen moi). First aorist active indicative of δηλοωdēloō old verb (from δελοςdelos), as in 1 Peter 1:11. Peter refers to the incident told in John 21:18., which he knew by personal experience before John wrote it down.

Verse 15

Peter may also have had an intimation by vision of his approaching death (cf. the legend Domine quo vadis) as Paul often did (Acts 16:9; Acts 18:9; Acts 21:11; Acts 23:11; Acts 27:23).

At every time (εκαστοτεhekastote). As need arises, old adverb, here alone in N.T.

After my decease (μετα την εμην εχοδονmeta tēn emēn exodon). For εχοδοςexodos meaning death see Luke 9:31, and for departure from Egypt (way out, εχ οδοςexεχειν υμαςhodos) see Hebrews 11:22, the only other N.T. examples. Here again Peter was present on the Transfiguration mount when the talk was about the “exodus” of Jesus from earth.

That ye may be able (εχωechein humas). Literally, “that ye may have it,” the same idiom with σπουδασωechō and the infinitive in Mark 14:8; Matthew 18:25. It is the object-infinitive after την τουτων μνημην ποιεισταιspoudasō (I will give diligence, for which see 2 Peter 1:10).

To call these things to remembrance (ποιεωtēn toutōn mnēmēn poieisthai). Present middle infinitive of Μνημηpoieō (as in 2 Peter 1:10). μναομαιMnēmē is an old word (from μνειαν ποιουμαιmnaomai), here alone in N.T. This idiom, like the Latin mentionem facere, is common in the old writers (papyri also both for “mention” and “remembrance”), here only in N.T., but in Romans 1:20 we have mneian poioumai (I make mention). Either sense suits here. It is possible, as Irenaeus (iii. I. I) thought, that Peter had in mind Mark‘s Gospel, which would help them after Peter was gone. Mark‘s Gospel was probably already written at Peter‘s suggestion, but Peter may have that fact in mind here.

Verse 16

We did not follow (ουκ εχακολουτησαντεςouk exakolouthēsantes). First aorist active participle of εχακολουτεωexakoloutheō late compound verb, to follow out (Polybius, Plutarch, lxx, papyri, inscriptions as of death following for any Gentile in the temple violating the barrier), with emphatic negative ουκouk “not having followed.” See also 2 Peter 2:2 for this verb.

Cunningly devised fables (σεσοπισμενοις μυτοιςsesophismenois muthois). Associative instrumental case of μυτοςmuthos (old term for word, narrative, story, fiction, fable, falsehood). In N.T. only here and the Pastoral Epistles (1 Timothy 1:4, etc.). Perfect passive participle of σοπιζωsophizō old word (from σοποςsophos), only twice in N.T., in causative sense to make wise (2 Timothy 3:15), to play the sophist, to invent cleverly (here) and so also in the old writers and in the papyri. Some of the false teachers apparently taught that the Gospel miracles were only allegories and not facts (Bigg). Cf. 2 Peter 2:3 for “feigned words.”

When we made known unto you (εγνωρισαμεν υμινegnōrisamen humin). First aorist active indicative of γνωριζωgnōrizō to make known unto you. Possibly by Peter himself.

The power and coming (την δυναμιν και παρουσιανtēn dunamin kai parousian). These words can refer (Chase) to the Incarnation, just as is true of επιπανειαepiphaneia in 2 Timothy 1:10 (second coming in 1 Timothy 6:14), and is true of παρουσιαparousia (2 Corinthians 7:6 of Titus). But elsewhere in the N.T. παρουσιαparousia (technical term in the papyri for the coming of a king or other high dignitary), when used of Christ, refers to his second coming (2 Peter 3:4, 2 Peter 3:12).

But we were eye-witnesses (αλλ εποπται γενητεντεςall' epoptai genēthentes). First aorist passive participle of γινομαιginomai “but having become eye-witnesses.” ΕποπταιEpoptai old word (from εποπτωepoptō like εποπτευωepopteuō in 1 Peter 2:12; 1 Peter 3:2), used of those who attained the third or highest degree of initiates in the Eleusinian mysteries (common in the inscriptions). Cf. αυτοπτηςautoptēs in Luke 1:2.

Of his majesty (της εκεινου μεγαλειοτητοςtēs ekeinou megaleiotētos). Late and rare word (lxx and papyri) from μεγαλειοςmegaleios (Acts 2:11), in N.T. only here, Luke 9:43 (of God); Acts 19:27 (of Artemis). Peter clearly felt that he and James and John were lifted to the highest stage of initiation at the Transfiguration of Christ. Emphatic εκεινουekeinou as in 2 Timothy 2:26.

Verse 17

For he received (λαβων γαρlabōn gar). Second aorist active participle nominative singular of λαμβανωlambanō “he having received,” but there is no finite verb, anacoluthon, changing in 2 Peter 1:19 (after parenthesis in 2 Peter 1:18) to εχομεν βεβαιοτερονechomen bebaioteron rather than εβεβαιωσενebebaiōsen there came such a voice to him (πωνης ενεχτεισης αυτωι τοιασδεphōnēs enechtheisēs autōi toiasde). Genitive absolute with first aorist passive participle feminine singular of περωpherō (cf. 1 Peter 1:13), repeated ενεχτεισανenechtheisan in 2 Peter 1:18. ΠωνηPhōnē (voice) is used also of Pentecost (Acts 2:6). ΤοιοσδεToiosde (classical demonstrative) occurs here alone in the N.T.

From the excellent glory (υπο της μεγαλοπρεπους δοχηςhupo tēs megaloprepous doxēs). “By the majestic glory.” ΜεγαλοπρεπηςMegaloprepēs old compound (μεγαςmegas great, πρεπειprepei it is becoming), here only in N.T., several times in O.T., Apocr. (2 Macc. 8:15), adverb in the inscriptions. Probably a reference to νεπελη πωτεινηnephelē phōteinē (bright cloud, shekinah) in Matthew 17:5. The words given here from the “voice” agree exactly with Matthew 17:5 except the order and the use of εις ονeis hon rather than εν ωιen hōi Mark (Mark 9:7) and Luke (Luke 9:35) have ακουετεakouete But Peter did not need any Gospel for his report here.

Verse 18

This voice (ταυτην την πωνηνtautēn tēn phōnēn). The one referred to in 2 Peter 1:17.

We heard (ηκουσαμενēkousamen). First aorist active indicative of ακουωakouō a definite experience of Peter.

Brought (ενεχτεισανenechtheisan). “Borne” as in 2 Peter 1:17.

When we were with him (συν αυτωι οντεςsun autōi ontes). Present active participle of ειμιeimi “being with him.”

In the holy mount (εν τωι αγιωι ορειen tōi hagiōi orei). Made holy by the majestic glory. See Ezekiel 28:14 for “holy mount of God,” there Sinai, this one probably one of the lower slopes of Hermon. Peter‘s account is independent of the Synoptic narrative, but agrees with it in all essentials.

Verse 19

The word of prophecy (τον προπητικον λογονton prophētikon logon). “The prophetic word.” Cf. 1 Peter 1:10, a reference to all the Messianic prophecies.

Made more sure (βεβαιοτερονbebaioteron). Predicate accusative of the comparative adjective βεβαιοςbebaios (2 Peter 1:10). The Transfiguration scene confirmed the Messianic prophecies and made clear the deity of Jesus Christ as God‘s Beloved Son. Some with less likelihood take Peter to mean that the word of prophecy is a surer confirmation of Christ‘s deity than the Transfiguration.

Whereunto (ωιhōi). Dative of the relative referring to “the prophetic word made more sure.”

That ye take heed (προσεχοντεςprosechontes). Present active participle with νουνnoun (mind) understood, “holding your mind upon” with the dative (ωιhōi).

As unto a lamp (ως λυχνωιhōs luchnōi). Dative also after προσεχοντεςprosechontes of λυχνοςluchnos old word (Matthew 5:15).

Shining (παινοντιphainonti). Dative also present active participle of παινωphainō to shine (John 1:5). So of the Baptist (John 5:35).

In a dark place (εν αυχμηρωι τοπωιen auchmērōi topōi). Old adjective, parched, squalid, dirty, dark, murky, here only in N.T., though in Aristotle and on tombstone for a boy.

Until the day dawn (εως ου ημερα διαυγασηιheōs hou hēmera diaugasēi). First aorist active subjunctive of διαυγαζωdiaugazō with temporal conjunction εως ουheōs hou usual construction for future time. Late compound verb διαυγαζωdiaugazō (Polybius, Plutarch, papyri) from διαdia and αυγηaugē to shine through, here only in N.T.

The day-star (πωσποροςphōsphoros). Old compound adjective (πωςphōs light, περωpherō to bring), light-bringing, light-bearer (Lucifer) applied to Venus as the morning star. Our word ποσπορυςphosphorus is this word. In the lxx εωσποροςheōsphoros occurs. Cf. Malachi 4:2; Luke 1:76-79; Revelation 22:16 for “dawn” applied to the Messiah.

Arise (ανατειληιanateilēi). First aorist active subjunctive of ανατελλωanatellō (James 1:11; Matthew 5:45).

Verse 20

Knowing this first (τουτο πρωτον γινωσκοντεςtouto prōton ginōskontes). Agreeing with ποιειτεpoieite like προσεχοντεςprosechontes in 2 Peter 1:19.

No prophecy of Scripture (πασα προπητεια ουpāsa prophēteia ou). Like the Hebrew γινεταιlȯkōl but also in the papyri as in 1 John 2:21 (Robertson, Grammar, p. 753).

Is (εστινginetai). Rather “comes,” “springs” (Alford), not “is” (ιδιας επιλυσεωςestin).

Of private interpretation (γνωμηςidias epiluseōs). Ablative case of origin or source in the predicate as with του τεουgnōmēs in Acts 20:3 and with εχ ημωνtou theou and επιλυσιςex hēmōn in 2 Corinthians 4:7. “No prophecy of Scripture comes out of private disclosure,” not “of private interpretation.” The usual meaning of επιλυωepilusis is explanation, but the word does not occur elsewhere in the N.T. It occurs in the papyri in the sense of solution and even of discharge of a debt. Spitta urges “dissolved” as the idea here. The verb epiluō to unloose, to untie, to release, occurs twice in the N.T., once (Mark 4:34) where it can mean “disclose” about parables, the other (Acts 19:39) where it means to decide. It is the prophet‘s grasp of the prophecy, not that of the readers that is here presented, as the next verse shows.

Verse 21

For (γαρgar). The reason for the previous statement that no prophet starts a prophecy himself. He is not a self-starter.

Came (ηνεχτηēnechthē). First aorist passive indicative of περωpherō (2 Peter 1:17.).

By the will of man (τεληματι αντρωπουthelēmati anthrōpou). Instrumental case of τελημαthelēma Prophecy is of divine origin, not of one‘s private origination (ιδιας επιλυσεωςidias epiluseōs).

Moved by the Holy Ghost (υπο πνευματος αγιου περομενοιhupo pneumatos hagiou pheromenoi). Present passive participle of περωpherō moved from time to time. There they “spoke from God.” Peter is not here warning against personal interpretation of prophecy as the Roman Catholics say, but against the folly of upstart prophets with no impulse from God.


Copyright Statement
The Robertson's Word Pictures of the New Testament. Copyright Broadman Press 1932,33, Renewal 1960. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Broadman Press (Southern Baptist Sunday School Board)

Bibliography Information
Robertson, A.T. "Commentary on 2 Peter 1:4". "Robertson's Word Pictures of the New Testament". Broadman Press 1932,33. Renewal 1960.

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Sunday, October 25th, 2020
the Week of Proper 25 / Ordinary 30
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