To Previous Book
- THE TITLE
This book bears the name of the writer (1:1), and is the second of two general epistles by Peter (3:1).
- THE WRITER
For information concerning Peter, the student is referred to the outline of I Peter, and to Bible dictionaries and encyclopedias.
- THE ONES ADDRESSED
The letter is addressed to "them that have obtained a like precious faith with us in the righteousness of our God and the Savior Jesus Christ" (1:1). However, the immediate recipients of this epistle were the same people who received Peter's first letter, "sojourners of the dispersion," or Jewish Christians scattered abroad in the five provinces named in I Peter 1:1.
- TIME AND PLACE OF WRITING
We have no definite information concerning the time and place of writing. Conservative estimates set the date around A.D. 67 or 68. Some scholars conclude from II Peter 1:13-16 that Peter's death was imminent. Although the epistle makes no direct reference to its point of origin, many commentators hold that Peter wrote it from Rome just before he died.
- OCCASION FOR THE LETTER
The libertines and mockers, two classes of false teachers within the church, were causing considerable difficulty. This letter warns the church against them, and exhorts Christians to "grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ" (II Peter 3:18). The plea for steadfastness is prominent, in view of numerous heretics threatening the spiritual life of the saints.
- A COMPARISON WITH I PETER
A comparison of the Petrine Epistles reveals some interesting points. In I Peter the persecutions were from without, whereas II Peter reveals internal troubles. The first epistle often refers to the suffering, death, resurrection and ascension of Christ. Second Peter fails to mention these. The spirit of the first letter is that of sweetness and mildness. The underlying tone in II Peter shows severity, anxiety, denunciation. In I Peter the second coming of Jesus is connected with the reward of the faithful saints, whereas in II Peter it is linked with the doom of sinners. The key-note of I Peter is hope; of II Peter, knowledge.
- EXERCISES FOR STUDENT ACTIVITY
- Man must have a special revelation to know God's will T F
- Peter wrote three general epistles T F
- Second Peter was written from Ephesus T F
- The key-note of II Peter is knowledge T F
- The spirit of II Peter manifests sweetness and mildness T F
- II Peter links Christ's return with the happiness of Christians T F
- II Peter tells of internal church trouble T F
- II Peter mentions the death, resurrection and ascension of Christ T F
- II Peter names seven Christian graces T F
- A child of God can fall from grace T F
- II Peter shows the author anticipated an imminent death T F
- Jesus predicted Peter's martyrdom T F
- Peter witnessed the transfiguration of Christ T F
- The apostle Peter is our day-star T F
- All false teachers are cowards T F
- All false teachers will be punished T F
- A dumb ass had more sense than Balaam T F
- Mockers walk in the footsteps of Christ T F
- Jehovah counts time by years T F
- The Lord will announce the day of His coming T F
- Topics for further study
- Study the points of similarity and the points of difference in First and Second Peter.
- Characterize false teachers as they are presented in II Peter.
- What is meant by the expression, "cast them down to hell (tartarus)"? (2:4).
- What interpretation do Roman Catholics place on II Peter 1:20?
- Characterize the libertines and mockers discussed in II Peter.
- Give Peter's description of the dissolution of the physical universe.
- Since we treasure the dying counsels of great men, it is interesting to note the final precepts of Peter. Holiness appears to him of first importance, steadfastness is the greatest blessing, and the divinity of Christ is his last thought.
Published in The Old Paths Archive