1 Peter by Edmund Clowney
This was the second book that I used to help with our Studies on 1 Peter and was a very helpful readable book bringing the letter to life. He uses generally non technical language making it relatively easy to read.
I have noticed that it has been suggested that the book is based on some of his sermons on 1 Peter, as it is divided into neat little sections that can be read, looked at and taken in over the time it takes to drink a cup of tea or coffee making it very readable. This being said it is not a book that lacks technical expertise, or depth of biblical theology.
If one want to learn more about 1 Peter then I can thoroughly recommend this book. So this is book 33 week 27 – novel 22, poetry 1, study 2 audio 8
1 Peter by Wayne A. Grudem
This is something slightly different for my book list, though I have read several similar books over the past 6 months, this is the first time that I have mentioned one like this here. I just had not thought about doing it until challenged by a friend as to why I had not done so. No specific reason just did not think about it.
Anyway this is a commentary on 1 Peter that I used to help with the Studies we have done on 1 Peter over the past few weeks.
Wayne evidently has a great depth of knowledge on the book, and provides an insight to the text on how readers are encouraged to grow in their trust in God and their obedience to him throughout their lives, but especially when they suffer.
Archbishop Robert Leighton says in the introduction "Here is a brief and very clear summary both of the consolations and instructions needful for the encouragement and direction of a Christian in his journey to Heaven, elevating his thoughts and desires to that happiness, and strengthening him against all opposition in the way, both that of corruption within, and temptations and afflictions from without,"
As a non biblical scholar it was a tad heavy going in places but very useful in helping prepare the studies. So this is book 32 week 27 – novel 22, poetry 1, study 1 audio 8
A Difficult Message
_ Well we come to 1 Peter 2 in our studies at the Kielder Bible Study Group, and this has parts in it that are very difficult passages, to get ones head round. In fact one of the commentaries I read said that this is one of the hardest passages in the Bible. Not that it is hard to understand but hard to carry out, as there is an apparent conflict between what Peter says here and what is said elsewhere in the New Testament. For example
Peter says there
13 Submit yourselves for the Lord’s sake to every human authority: whether to the emperor, as the supreme authority, 14 or to governors, who are sent by him to punish those who do wrong and to commend those who do right ...and in verse
17 Show proper respect to everyone, love the family of believers, fear God, honor the emperor.
I am aware that there is around 100 pages in the two concordances I am using on these few verses - one calls them the most difficult verses in the bible. There is the conflict between these verses and the apparent moral justification that we should "stand up for what is right" and obey Gods higher Authority. Especially if one then considers the next couple of verses taking the words slaves and masters to mean anyone under authority of a master be it the civil authorities or an employer..
18 Slaves, in reverent fear of God submit yourselves to your masters, not only to those who are good and considerate, but also to those who are harsh. 19 For it is commendable if someone bears up under the pain of unjust suffering because they are conscious of God.
I have turned to a friend for his take on this and he says
“The question of Civil Authority in the NT is always a difficult one! The passages you quote are absolutely correct. I always turn to John Zeisler’s commentary on Romans,(SCM 1990), where he points out:-
1. Paul was opposed to anarchy, yes.
2. The Roman state at this stage was permitting Christians the freedom to preach.
3. Paul was trying to distance Christianity from the Jewish terrorists in Palestine. The Jewish Revolt was not far into the future, and seeds of unrest were sown already.
4. When the Emperor was persecuting Christians, as was the background in Revelation, the attitude of Christian writers has changed.
5. Paul expected Jesus to return any time soon, so resisting the state was not necessary; it would soon disappear anyway.
Peter Brooks points out neither Jesus, Paul or Peter advocated submissiveness. All three of them suffered (Crucifixion/imprisonment) because they would not obey the order to keep silent (Luke 19:40; Acts 4:18ff – CRUCIAL VERSES??)
Acts 4 -v18 Then they called them in again and commanded them not to speak or teach at all in the name of Jesus. 19 But Peter and John replied, “Which is right in God’s eyes: to listen to you, or to him? You be the judges! 20 As for us, we cannot help speaking about what we have seen and heard.”
I think the key thing to remember is Matthew 22:35-38 35 One of them, an expert in the law, tested him with this question: 36 “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?” 37 Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’38 This is the first and greatest commandment.
And then everything else is in relation to this.
_ We are starting a new series of studies on the Letters of Peter in the New Testament at our Kielder Bible Study Group. One of the first things we considered was the who, what when and where questions about these letters.
_ Who wrote this - The author is Peter – the Apostle and former fisherman but letter was actually penned by Silas (1 Peter Ch 5 v12) his secretary
What – These were letters to encourage the readers to grow in faith trust and obedience of God. In them Peter also recognises that life is not easy as a Christian
When - It is assumed that Peter died under Nero's rule and therefore must have beenwritten before AD 68 when he ceased being Roman Emperor. Paul was in Rome AD 60 – AD 62 and does not mention Peter in his letters so it must have been after that. Late AD 62 seems to be the favourite date for 1 Peter and AD 63 for 2 Peter
Where - 1 Peter Ch 5 v 13 mentions Babylon. He probably does not mean Babylon in Mesopotamia, as it was a small obscure place and not mentioned in other literature but else where in the New Testament Babylon is taken to mean RomeTertullian writes in Ad 203 about Peter being in Rome
In these letters we will see that Peter has become a boldly confident and humbly self-effacing servant of Jesus. Also that he is a witness to what he himself describes as “a brand-new life, with everything to live for”.
As such the answer to the question mooted at the start must be yes. The detail of the study on the 1 Peter 1 can be found here
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