False Prophets and Teachers

2Peter 2:1-3 But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction. And many shall follow their pernicious ways; by reason of whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of. And through covetousness shall they with feigned words make merchandise of you: whose judgment now of a long time lingers not, and their damnation slumbers not. 

‘False prophets also among the people …’ this is the 3rd New Testament prophecy in 2Peter being fulfilled. [Greek: pseudoprophetes] False prophets (2:1; Matt. 7:15, note; 24:11, 24; Mark 13:22; Luke 6:26; Acts 13:6; 1Jn. 4:1; Rev. 16:13; 19:20; 20:10). ‘False teachers’ [Greek: pseudodidaskalos] false teachers. Compare with false brethren in 2Corinthians 11:26 and Galatians 2:4. ‘Privily’ cunningly and secretly. The enemy steals the Word of God from men’s minds (Matt. 13:19) through deceptions and false religions (2Cor. 11:14; 1Tim. 4:1-16; Rev. 12:9) and we cannot listen to false teachers’ teachings and think we will afterwards understand God’s Word at all (1Tim. 4:1-2; 6:3-5; 2Tim. 2: 16-17; 2Jn. 1:10).

‘Damnable heresies, even denying the Lord’ heresies of destruction that will damn the soul. All deviation from the truth is heresy (2:1; Gal. 5:20; 1Cor. 11:19). True Christians apply it to all false religions who do not accept the true Christian doctrines even though the Jews called the Christians a sect (Acts 24:5, 14; 28:22) as did Christians correctly called the Pharisees and Sadducees and other groups sects (Acts 5:17; 15:5; 26:5).

‘The Lord that bought them’ as the slave is the sole property of his master, so we, having been bought by the precious blood of Christ, are not our own (1Cor. 6:19-20; 7:23; 1Pet. 1:18-23).

‘Bring upon themselves swift destruction’ deviating from God’s Word will most definitely bring destruction to anyone as the enemy will and can destroy all who is not armoured and prepared for his devices (Eph. 6:10 – 18).

‘Pernicious ways’ heresies of destruction; some texts read “follow their lasciviousness” or “their lust of the flesh.” ‘By reason of whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of’ – lusts and slander of the truth have destroyed multitudes. People ‘hear’ (Rom. 10:17) what false leaders or teachers say and are programmed according to their opinions and beliefs. We must study the Word ourselves (2 Tim. 2:15) to confirm what God says – on the whole subject – and not trust what others say or what their opinions are. Be careful to misquote the Word of God by adding or taking away thereof (Deut. 12:32; Rev. 22:18-19). We ourselves must live in obedience to God’s Word (Rom. 6:16; 2Cor. 10:5-6) and become doers (Jas. 1:19-24) in all He commands.

‘Covetousness shall they with feigned words make merchandise of you’ in order to get money to spend upon their own lusts, they fabricate counterfeit doctrines, false theories and fake miracles to deceive.

‘Long time lingers not, and their damnation slumbers not’ God predicted their punishment long ago and their damnation is sure.

The Excellent Glory

2Peter 1:16-18 For we have not followed cunningly devised fables, when we made known unto you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but were eyewitnesses of his majesty. For he received from God the Father honour and glory, when there came such a voice to him from the excellent glory, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased. And this voice which came from heaven we heard, when we were with him in the holy mount.

‘Cunningly devised fables’ Peter evidently refers to the fables of the heathen priests about their gods. He declares that he and others were eyewitnesses of Christ and His transfiguration (1:16-18). Today we have the fables (1Tim. 4:7; 2Tim. 4:3-4) are made up when so-called preachers tell stories to entertain and make their hearers feel good about themselves and their relationship with God instead of teaching the Word of God (2Tim. 4:2, 5) that was given that we can live purified lives (Tit. 2:14; Jas. 4:8) instead of in bondage (2:19-22; Rom. 8:15; Gal. 5:1) to the dictates of this world, sin and satan 1Jn. 5:18).

‘Coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but were eyewitnesses of his majesty’ this refers to the transfiguration which was an actual demonstration of Christ coming in His glory to earth to set up His kingdom (Matt. 16:27-28; 17:1-8; 24:29-31; 25:31-46; Rev. 19:11-21).

‘This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.’ God has declared by an audible voice that Jesus of Nazareth is His beloved Son (Matt. 3:17; 17:5; Mark 1:11; 9:7; Luke 3:22; 9:35; 20:13).

‘We heard, when we were with him in the holy mount’ three disciples heard God’s voice and saw the glory of God and the appearance of Moses and Elijah (Matt. 17:1-8) at the transfiguration when they were sent to confirm the following: The abolition of the lawof Moses (Matt. 11:11-13; Luke 16:16; Gal. 3:19-25; 4:21-31; 2Cor. 3:6-15; Col. 2:14-17). The fulfilment of prophecies of the sufferings of the Messiah (Luke 24:25-27, 44-45; John 1:45; Acts 13:29-41). Christ as the Messiah, the sole authority from God and the Mediator between God and man (Acts 3:22-23; Heb. 1:1-2; 1Tim. 2:5). The reality and consciousness of departed spirits (Luke 16:19-31; Eph. 4:8-10; Heb. 12:23; Rev. 6:9-11). The immortality of the soul (1Pet. 3:4; 4:6; Ps. 16:10; Luke 20:38). The second coming, rewards and punishments (Matt. 16:27; 24:29 – 25:46). Physical resurrection (Matt. 17:9; John 5:28-29; 1Cor. 15:1-58; Rev. 20:4-15). The reality of the future eternal kingdom (Matt. 16:28; 17:1-9; Rev. 5:10; 11:15; 20:1-10).

In Remembrance

2Peter 1:11-15 For so an entrance shall be ministered unto you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. Wherefore I will not be negligent to put you always in remembrance of these things, though you know them, and be established in the present truth. Yea, I think it meet, as long as I am in this tabernacle, to stir you up by putting you in remembrance; Knowing that shortly I must put off this my tabernacle, even as our Lord Jesus Christ has showed me. Moreover I will endeavour that you may be able after my decease to have these things always in remembrance. 

‘For so an entrance shall be ministered unto you abundantly’ ten things that guarantee abundant entrance into the Kingdom of God: Obtain like precious faith (1:1); increase in grace and peace (1:2); live a godly life by God’s power (1:3; 5-13); partake of the divine nature (1:4); escape the corruption of the world and the lust of the flesh (1:4); add the graces of 2Peter 1:5-7; let these graces abound (1:8); be fruitful in knowledge (1:8); live free from past sins (1:9); give diligence to make personal calling and election sure (1:10).

An allusion is made here to Roman generals who were given triumphal parades as a reward for some signal victory or conquest. A public and solemn honour was conferred upon a victorious general, by allowing him a magnificent procession through the city of Rome. This was not granted by the Senate unless he had gained a very decisive victory or conquered a province. On such occasions, the general was clad in purple and gold woven in figures setting forth his achievements. He wore a crown and in one hand held a branch of laurel, the emblem of victory. In the other, he carried his staff. He rode a magnificent chariot, adorned with ivory and plates of gold, and drawn by white horses. To keep him humble in the midst of all this a slave rode at his back, casting railings and reproaches and enumerating his vices and failures. Musicians led the procession; young men led sacrifices to be offered; then came loads of spoil, followed by the kings, princes, and generals that were taken captive. After these came the triumphal chariot before which people strewed flowers and shouted triumphant cries. Following this, came the senate, priests, and the rest of the parade.

‘Everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ’ this is the 1st New Testament prophecy in 2Peter that is unfulfilled. Scripture is clear that Christ’s kingdom will be eternal (Isa. 9:6-7; Dan. 2:44-45; 7:13-14, 27; Luke 1:32-33; Rev. 11:15; 22:4-5). He will reign 1,000 years for the purpose of ridding the earth of all rebellion, and then continue reigning over the restored and perfect earth forever (1Cor. 15:24-28; Eph. 1:10; Rev. 5:10; 20:1-10).

‘Wherefore I will not be negligent to put you always in remembrance of these things, though you know them, and be established in the present truth’ in view of the reasons Peter have stated as necessary to enter into eternal life, he said that he will not neglect to remind believers of these things, though they already know them, and are established in them.

‘As long as I am in this tabernacle, to stir you up by putting you in remembrance’ Peter stated here that as long as he alive he will keep believers in mind that there are certain conditions they must meet in order to enter into eternal life (1:11). ‘Tabernacle’ the human body (1:13-14; 2Cor. 5:1-9).

‘As our Lord Jesus Christ has showed me’ referring to the prediction of Christ in John 21:18-19.

‘Endeavour’ [Greek: spoudazo] to be diligent; zealous; earnest (Eph. 4:3). This word is translated “diligent” in 2Peter 1:10 and 3:14, showing Peter’s concern for Christians to make their calling and election sure by meeting the terms of eternal life. ‘Remembrance’ the third time Peter makes reference to keep in remembrance the conditions of entrance into eternal life (1:12, 13, 15; 3:1). Many today emphasize forgetting any conditions of eternal life. In fact, they teach that there are no conditions other than accepting Jesus, that the rest of the Christian program is up to God and that if one is lost it is God’s responsibility, not man’s.

Give Diligence

2Peter 1:8-10 For if these things be in you, and abound, they make you that you shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. But he that lacks these things is blind, and cannot see afar off, and has forgotten that he was purged from his old sins. Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure: for if you do these things, you shall never fall 

‘If these things be in you, and abound, they make you that you shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ’ a guarantee against backsliding (1:8-10). We see from Philippians 1:9 “And this I pray, that your love may abound yet more and more in knowledge and in all judgment” that our love for God will increase as we increase in knowledge of His Word (His thoughts, His will; etc.) and we will increase in all judgment which is the Greek word aisthesis meaning discernment. His knowledge allows us to discern between right and wrong (Heb. 5:14).

‘He that lacks these things is blind, and cannot see afar off, and has forgotten that he was purged from his old sins’ this proves that one can have the graces and experiences of 2Peter 1:3-7 and then lose them even to the point of actually forgetting he was purged from his old sins (1:8-9). Peter exhorts everyone to be diligent, making his “calling and election sure,” declaring that they who do the things of 2Peter 1:4-7 will never fall (1:10). The doctrine of calling and election has been surrounded by many traditional theories and mysteries down through the centuries, but there is no excuse for this, as the term simply means chosen. Any person or group of persons selected or chosen of God for any particular purpose is the elect of God. Christ is called God’s elect (Isa. 42:1; 1 Pet. 2:6). A particular woman in a local congregation is called an “elect lady” (2John 1:1, 13). Israel as a nation is spoken of as the elect of God (Isa. 45:4; 65:9, 22; Matt. 24:22-31; Mark 13:20-27; Rom. 11:7, 28; 1Pet. 1:2). The body of Christ, made up of both Jews and Gentiles, is called the elect of God (Rom. 8:33; Col. 3:12; 1Thess. 1:4; Tit. 1:1). Angels are also called the elect of God (1Thess. 5:21). Anyone called to be saved and chosen for any particular mission is elected of God for that work (John 6:70; 13:18; 15:16; Acts 1:2; 9:15; 15:7). Every person saved is the elect or chosen of God to salvation (John 15:19; 2Thess. 2:13; Jam. 2:5; Rev. 17:14).

It is very clear from Scripture that final election to salvation is man’s own responsibility. The Bible is very clear that man looks on the outward appearances and God looks on the heart (1Sam. 16:7; Isa. 55:8, 9). It says that God’s ways are always righteous (Ps. 145:17). He is no respecter of persons (Rom. 2:11; Jam. 2:9). His will is for all to be saved (John 3:16; 1Tim. 2:4, 5; 2Pet. 3:9). God’s will and ways are made plain in His word and all who conform to them are loved on an equal basis according to the degree of obedience. This is how God will be able to judge all men according to his ways (Prov. 24:12; Jer. 17:10; Ezek. 18:30; 33:20; Hos. 12:2; Matt. 16:27; 1Cor. 3:11-15; 2Cor. 10:9, 10; 2Tim. 4:4; Rev. 20:11-15). God repeatedly declares that He demands wholehearted service from every man (Deut. 11:13; Josh. 22:5; 1Sam. 12:20, 24; Matt. 22:37). God constantly searches the hearts of men and deals with them in order to bring them to righteousness (Job 33:14-30; Ps. 139:23; Jer. 11:20; 17:9, 10; 20:12; Heb. 4:12). Therefore, God does not choose some to be saved and others to be lost and He is not responsible for those who will be lost.

‘Give diligence to make your calling and election sure’ the second time in six verses Christians are warned to give diligence to meeting certain terms of God lest they fall into sin and be lost (1:5, 10).

‘If you do these things, you shall never fall’ one will not fall away from grace (Heb. 6:4-6; 10:26-31) when living according to the given standard of diligence (1:5-8).

‘Fall’ [Greek: ptahyo] a form of [Greek: pipto] to trip, that is, (figuratively) to err, sin, fail (of salvation): – fall, offend, stumble, meaning to be slain, or to lose one’s favour or grace.

Life and Godliness

2Peter 1:3-7 According as his divine power has given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that has called us to glory and virtue: Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these you might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust. And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge; And to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness; And to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity. 

‘Divine’ [Greek: theios] that which belongs to the Godhead. ‘Power’ [Greek: dunamis] inherent power; power to reproduce itself, like a dynamo.

‘All things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that has called us’ this divine power is capable of giving one all things of life and godliness through the proper knowledge. ‘To glory and virtue’ the object of Christian calling.

‘Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises’ by His glorious power (1:3). ‘By these you might be partakers of the divine nature’ seven blessings of the promises are given: Like precious faith (1:1; Rom. 10:17); righteousness (1:1; 1Cor. 1:30); grace and peace (1:2); all things that pertain to life and godliness (1:3; Tit. 2:11-12); glory and virtue (1:3); the divine nature (1:4); escape from corruption and lust (1:4).

‘Corruption’ [Greek: phthora] moral corruption, decay, ruin, depravity, wickedness (1:4; 2:12, 19; Rom. 8:21; 1Cor. 15:42, 50; Gal. 6:8). Also translated “perish” (Col. 2:22) and “be destroyed” (2:12).

‘Beside this’ along with this, or by the side of your obtaining precious faith (1:1). ‘Add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge’ there are seven steps in spiritual arithmetic: Add to faith virtue (Christian Virtues); add to virtue knowledge (1:5); add to knowledge temperance (Gal. 5:22); add to temperance patience; add to patience godliness (1Tim. 3:16); add to godliness brotherly kindness; add to brotherly kindness love (1Cor. 13:4).

Through the Righteousness

2Peter 1:1-2 Simon Peter, a servant and an apostle of Jesus Christ, to them that have obtained like precious faith with us through the righteousness of God and our Saviour Jesus Christ: Grace and peace be multiplied unto you through the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord 

‘Peter’ he was one of the 12 apostles (1Pet. 1:1; Matt. 10:2); called Simon and Cephas (John 1:42); a native fisherman of Bethsaida (Matt. 4:18; John 1:44. Peter was a married man (Matt. 8:14; 1Cor. 9:5). He ministered primarily to Jews (Gal. 2:7) and was an elder among many others (1Pet. 5). Peter went east and wrote an epistle from Babylon. Nothing is given of his death other than what is given in John 21:18-19. The theme of this epistle is to exhort believers to stand true in all kinds of suffering, and to set forth the true grace of God (1Pet. 5:12).

‘An apostle of Jesus Christ’ the Greek word apostolos meaning a delegate, one sent with full power of attorney to act in the place of another, the sender remaining behind to back up the one sent. In the case of Christians, it means God sends them to do what He, Himself would do if He went.

‘Precious’ [Greek: isotimos] equal honour. It refers to valuable and costly faith; faith of a great price.

‘Righteousness of God’ the true and costly faith comes through the righteousness of God and Jesus Christ, or through their method of redemption of the lost world (Rom. 10:17).

‘And our Saviour Jesus Christ’ the Greek reads, “our God and Saviour Jesus Christ.” Peter thus declares that Jesus is God as much as the Father and the Holy Spirit.

‘Jesus our Lord’ ten things about Jesus Christ: Peter’s Master – servant of Christ (1:2); made Peter an apostle (Mark 3:14-19); source of precious faith (Acts 3:16); source of righteousness (1Cor. 1:30); He is God (John 1:1-2); He is Saviour (John 4:42; Acts 5:31); source of grace (John 1:16-17); source of peace (Rom. 5:1; Eph. 2:14); associated with God the Father as the source of knowledge (Eph. 1:1-23;17; 4:13); a separate person from God the Father (1:2; 1Jn. 5:7).

‘Grace and peace be multiplied unto you through the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord’ as our knowledge of the Father and Son increases when we study the Word (Php. 1:9) our relationship grows and so the blessings we receive from the gospel which includes grace and peace. To be kept in continued grace we have to live and walk in the Spirit (Rom. 8:1-13; Gal. 5:5; 16-26; Col. 3:5-10); be patient in hope (Rom. 8:24; Gal. 5:5; Heb. 3:6, 12-14; 6:19); continue in Christ (John 15:1-8; Gal. 5:6; Col. 2:6-7; Heb. 3:14), and continue in faith (Gal. 5:6; Col. 1:23). To have the peace of God one must be in Christ Jesus, which means to be in unity with Him and of one mind with His Word. We must permit the peace of God to garrison or keep your heart and mind through Jesus Christ (Php. 4:7) without allowing the cares of this world to consume our hearts and minds.

Suffer for Righteousness’ Sake

1Peter 3:14-18 But and if you suffer for righteousness’ sake, happy are you: and be not afraid of their terror, neither be troubled; But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asks you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear: Having a good conscience; that, whereas they speak evil of you, as of evildoers, they may be ashamed that falsely accuse your good conversation in Christ. For it is better, if the will of God be so, that you suffer for well doing, than for evil doing. For Christ also has once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit 

‘Suffer for righteousness’ sake,’ all sufferings for doing right will work to your good (Rom. 8:28), providing you take the right attitude (Matt. 5:10; Luke 6:22-23). ‘Be not afraid of their terror, neither be troubled’ quoted from Isaiah 8:12-13.

‘Sanctify the Lord God in your hearts’ another proof that sanctification means to separate from a profane to a sacred purpose. We are to give God His rightful place; hold Him in reverence.

‘Good conscience’ one can always have a good conscience if he maintains good behaviour. ‘Conscience’ [Greek: suneidesis] joint knowledge of God and man; knowledge of our acts, state, or character as to right and wrong; the faculty, power, or principle which decides the lawfulness of our actions and affections, and approves or condemns them; the moral faculty or sense; consciousness of actions; the eye, judge, and guide of the inner man. Twelve kinds of conscience are described in the Word: Awakened (John 8:9); seared (1Tim. 4:2); purged (Heb. 9:9, 14; 10:2); pure (Acts 24:16; 1Tim. 3:9; 2Tim. 1:3); weak (1Cor. 8:7, 12, 13); defiled (Tit. 1:15); witnessing (Rom. 2:12-15; 9:1; 2Cor. 1:12); good (Acts 23:1; 1Tim. 1:5, 19; 1Pet. 2:19;  3:16, 21; Heb. 13:18); convicting or healthy (Matt. 27:3); satisfied (1Cor. 10:25-29); evil (Heb. 10:22); perfect (Heb. 9:9).

‘Conversation’ [Greek: anastrophe] behaviour or manner of life; the whole conduct of life in domestic and public relations. Always translated “conversation” (1:15, 18; 2:12; 3:1, 2, 16; Gal. 1:13; Eph. 4:22; 1Tim. 4:12; Heb. 13:7; Jas. 3:13; 2Pet. 2:7; 3:11).

‘That you suffer for well doing, than for evil doing’ six things to do in view of suffering: Be happy in suffering (3:14; Matt. 5:10). Be not afraid of man (3:14; Matt. 10:28). Be not troubled by trouble (3:14). Take suffering as unto God and hold Him sacred in your heart (3:15). Be ready to give an account of your life, conduct, and hope (3:15). Maintain a good conscience by good behaviour (3:16).

‘Christ also has once suffered for sins …’ eight facts about Christ (3:18-22): He suffered (3:18); He was put to death (3:18); He was resurrected by the Spirit (3:18); He went to Sheol/Hades (Ps. 16:10; Acts 2:27); He preached to fallen angels while in Sheol/Hades (3:19; 2Pet 2:4; Jude 1:6-7); He ascended to heaven (3:22); He sits on God’s right hand (3:22; Eph. 1:20; Heb. 1:3; 8:1; 12:2); He exalted above all others (3:22; Eph. 1:20-23; Php. 2:9-11; Col. 1:15-18).

‘Once suffered for sins’ three purposes of Christ’s sufferings: He suffered for sins (2:24; Gal. 1:4; Matt. 26:28; Eph. 1:14; 1Cor. 15:3). He suffered for the unjust (Rom. 5:6-8). He suffered to bring us to God (Col. 1:20-22; 2:14-17; 2Cor. 5:14-21).

‘Death in the flesh’ He died in the flesh but did not die in the spirit, proving immortality of the spirit (3:4). Only the body dies at the time of physical death. This is caused by the soul and spirit leaving the body (Jas. 2:26). The body returns to dust and the soul and spirit of the righteous go to heaven to await the resurrection (2Cor. 5:8; Php. 1:21-24; Heb. 12:23; Rev. 6:9-11). The soul and spirit of the wicked go to hell to await the resurrection (Luke 16:19-31; Isa. 14:9; Rev. 20:11-15). The soul and spirit are spiritual and immortal. They cannot go back to dust.

‘Quickened by the Spirit’ His dead body was resurrected by the Holy Spirit (Rom. 8:11).

Let Him Refrain

1Peter 3:8-13 Finally, be you all of one mind, having compassion one of another, love as brethren, be pitiful, be courteous: Not rendering evil for evil, or railing for railing: but contrariwise blessing; knowing that you are thereunto called, that you should inherit a blessing. For he that will love life, and see good days, let him refrain his tongue from evil, and his lips that they speak no guile: Let him eschew evil, and do good; let him seek peace, and ensue it. For the eyes of the Lord are over the righteous, and his ears are open unto their prayers: but the face of the Lord is against them that do evil. And who is he that will harm you, if you be followers of that which is good?

‘Be you all of one mind, having compassion one of another, love as brethren, be pitiful, be courteous’ twelve commands are given here for Christians: Be one of mind (3:8; Eph. 4:1-3). Have compassion on one another (3:8). Love as brethren (3:8; 1Cor. 13:1-13). Be pitiful (tender-hearted, 3:8). Be courteous (friendly, 3:8). Not rendering evil for evil (3:9). Not railing for railing (3:9). Be a blessing to others (3:9). Control the tongue (3:10; Jas. 3:1-18). Do not be deceptive (3:10). Shun evil and do good (3:11). Seek peace and pursue it (3:11). ‘Be one of mind’ to take the Word of God as the final authority and not have one’s own opinion or ideas of what you think He could have meant.

‘For he that will love life, and see good days, let him refrain his tongue from evil, and his lips that they speak no guile’ quoted from Psalm 34:12-16 where eighteen conditions of a long life are given: Freedom from fear (Ps. 34:4); quickening from God (Ps. 34:5); boldness – freedom from shame; freedom from troubles (Ps. 34:6); divine deliverance (Ps. 34:7); partaking of God’s life (Ps. 34:8); absolute trust in God; fear of God (Ps. 34:7-9); freedom from want (Ps. 34:9-10); seeking God first (Ps. 34:10, 15; Matt. 6:33); godly teaching (Ps. 34:11; 2Tim. 3:15); control of tongue (Ps. 34:12-13); godliness – departing from evil [sin] (Ps. 34:14-16); consecration to doing good (Ps. 34:14); seeking and pursuing peace; brokenness and humility (Ps. 34:18); salvation of the soul (Ps. 34:22); prosperity – freedom from worry.

Three warnings about speaking evil: Commands against it (Ex. 22:28; Eph. 4:25-31); shortens life (3:9-10; Ps. 34:13); brings sure judgment (Ps. 12:3-4; Matt. 12:36-37; 1Cor. 6:10). Death and life are greatly determined by the power of the tongue, and he who uses this power rightly shall live because of it (Pro. 18:21).

‘For the eyes of the Lord are over the righteous, and his ears are open unto their prayers; but the face of the Lord is against them that do evil’ three blessings are noted here for the righteous: God’s eyes are over them; He hears their prayers and defeats their enemies.

‘But the face of the Lord is against them that do evil’ God will look upon the wicked to abhor and to punish them for their sins.

‘And who is he that will harm you, if you be followers of that which is good?’ No one can harm us when we are IN Christ – in union with Him. ‘Followers’ [Greek: mimetes] imitator – we must be imitators of Christ: live as He lived while on earth (1Thess. 1:6: 2:14; 1Pet. 2:21-23; 1Jn. 2:6).

The Hidden Man

1Peter 3:4-7 But let it be the hidden man of the heart, in that which is not corruptible, even the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price. For after this manner in the old time the holy women also, who trusted in God, adorned themselves, being in subjection unto their own husbands: Even as Sara obeyed Abraham, calling him lord: whose daughters you are, as long as you do well, and are not afraid with any amazement. Likewise, you husbands, dwell with them according to knowledge, giving honour unto the wife, as unto the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life; that your prayers be not hindered. 

‘Hidden man of the heart’ this is the inner man of Romans 7:22; 2Corinthians 4:16 and Ephesians 3:16 where it refers to the spirit of man which knows (1Cor. 2:11; 2Cor. 4:16; Eph. 3:16) and which is immortal (3:4). It also takes in the soul, that is, the seat of the feelings, emotions, and desires, for Paul not only knew and willed to do the will of God, but he delighted in it (cp. Ps. 1:2).

‘Is not corruptible’ [Greek: aphthartos] translated “not corruptible” of man’s soul and spirit (3:4); “incorruptible” of man’s crown (1Cor. 9:25), of the future resurrected body (1Cor. 15:52), of our heavenly inheritance (1:4), and of the Word of God (1:23); “uncorruptible” of God (Rom. 1:23); and “immortal” of God (1Tim. 1:17). Thus, we have definite proof that the inner man is just as immortal as God. People have immortality of soul and spirit and will have immortality in body in the resurrection (1Cor. 15:51-58).

Twenty-five proofs are given in Scripture of the immortality of man’s soul as we can see from the following quotes: the hidden man of the heart is not corruptible (is immortal, 1Pet. 3:4). Hell from beneath is moved to meet thee at thy coming (Isa. 14:9-11). They have eternal life (John 3:15-16; 6:54, 58; 17:2-3). They are passed from death unto life (John 5:24; 6:40, 47). He shall live forever (John 6:51) and they shall never perish (John 10:28). They shall never die (John 11:25-26). Man is not able to kill the soul (Matt. 10:28; Luke 12:5). There appeared Moses talking with Him (Matt. 17:3; cp. Deut. 34:6). Their worm dies not (Mark 9:43-49). In hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments (Luke 16:19-31). All live unto Him (Luke 20:37-38). Though our outward man perishes, yet the inward man is renewed day by day … The things which are not seen (the soul and spirit) are eternal (2Cor. 4:16-18). To be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord (2Cor. 5:8). To depart (die, the inner man leaving the body, Jas. 2:26) is to be with Christ (Php. 1:21-24). Whether we wake (live) or sleep (die), we shall live with Him (1Thess. 5:10). You are come unto the spirits of just men and made perfect (Heb. 12:22-23). The souls of the dead live according to God in the spirit (1Pet. 4:6). He that does the will of God abides forever (1Jn. 2:17). We know we have passed from death unto life because we love (1Jn. 3:14-15). God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son (1Jn. 5:11). He that has the Son has life (1Jn. 2:24-25; 5:12). Your heart shall live forever (Ps. 22:26). The path of the just shines more and more unto the perfect day (Pro. 4:18). I saw under the altar the souls . . . they cried, saying (Rev. 6:9-11).

‘Even the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit’ meekness so as not to be provoked by others and a quiet spirit so as not to provoke others. ‘Of great price’ all the ornaments placed on the heads of all females are of no value compared to the meek and quiet spirit. One is passing; the other is eternal. Proverbs 11:22 states: As a jewel of gold in a swine’s snout, so is a fair woman which is without discretion. a jewel in the swine’s snout is as becoming as a beautiful woman who lacks moral discretion.

‘Whose daughters you are, as long as you do well’ as Abraham is the father of all that believe (Rom. 4:12, 16), so Sarah is here spoken of as being the mother of many daughters who walk in her footsteps. ‘Afraid with any amazement’ fear of detection for infidelity. If you do well, being faithful wives, as Sarah, you will not live under fear of being found guilty of infidelities.

‘Likewise, you husbands, dwell with them according to knowledge, giving honour unto the wife’ two commands are given here for husbands: Likewise – be just as faithful to your wives, as you want them to be to you; give them no excuse for sin and give honour to the wife, using your superior strength in protecting her and as being heirs together of life.

‘Weaker vessel’ even though more beautiful, they are delicate and frail.

‘That your prayers be not hindered’ many prayers are hindered because of the unfaithfulness of husbands and wives. Husbands must make sure they honour their own wives by giving them the necessary honour and support as to not being cut off from above (Isa. 59:1-2).

You Were Healed

1Peter 2:24 Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes you were healed. 

One of the conditions of healing was given as a warning by Christ: “Behold, thou are made whole: sin no more, lest a worse thing come unto thee.” (John 5:14) Many more facts are given regarding healing: Health was natural and eternal before the fall (Gen. 1:26-31; 2:17). Both death and sickness originated with sin and are now being propagated by satan (Job 2:6-7; Luke 13:16; John 10:10; Acts 10:38; Rom. 5:12-21; 1Jn. 3:8). The first prophecy and promise of redemption included healing (Gen. 3:15; Isa. 53:5; Matt. 8:16-17; 1Pet. 2:24). The first recorded bodily affliction came through wrongdoing (Gen. 20:1-18). The first recorded healing was by the prayer of a prophet (Gen. 20:7-17).

God made covenants with His people to heal them (Ex. 15:26; 23:23; Lev. 26; Deut. 28; Matt. 8:17; 1Pet. 2:24; Jas. 5:14). God has always kept His covenants and has healed people by spiritual means (Ps. 103:3; 105:37; 107:20; Acts 10:38). Spiritual means to heal is all that God promised and commanded (Ex. 15:25; Ps. 91; Isa. 58; Matt. 8:17; 13:15; Jas. 5:14-16; 1Pet. 2:24). Spiritual means were used in the wilderness by Israel (Ex. 15:26; Num. 11:1-3; 12:13-16; 21:1-9; John 3:14). Healing was promised on condition of obedience (Ex. 15:26; Lev. 26; Deut. 28; Ps. 91; Isa. 58; Jas. 5:14-15).

God permits satan to afflict sinners and even His own people when they go astray, to bring them to repentance (Job 33:12-30; Ps. 38; 103:3; Num. 12:13-16; 21:9; 1Cor. 5:1-5; 2Cor. 2:6-11; Gal. 6:7-8). God always healed when lessons were learned and men repented (Gen. 20:7, 17; Num. 11:2; 12:13-16; 21:1-9; Job 33:12-30; 42:1-12; Ps. 103:3; Jas. 5:14-15). Health as well as healing was promised when men met certain conditions (Ex. 15:26; Lev. 26; Deut. 28; Ps. 91; Pro. 3:1-8; 12:18; 13:3; 15:4; 18:8, 21; Isa. 58; Jas. 5:14; 1Pet. 3:10-11; 3Jn. 1:2).

Christ came to redeem from both sin and sickness (Isa. 53; 61:1-2; Matt. 8:17; 9:5; Acts 10:38; Rom. 8:11; Gal. 3:13; 1Pet. 2:24; 1Jn. 3:8). Healing is in fulfilment of prophecy (Isa. 35; 53; 61:1-2; Matt. 8:17; 13:15; Acts 10:38; 1Pet. 2:24). Jesus proved His Sonship by healing all men (Matt. 4:23-24; 11:3-6; Luke 4:16-21; Acts 10:38; 1Jn. 3:8).

Every disciple called and sent by Christ was given power to heal (Matt. 10:1-8; Mark 6:7-13; Luke 10:1-21; Acts 1:8). Jesus commanded His disciples to become filled with power to heal before they went out (Luke 24:49; Acts 1:4-8). Early disciples did confirm the Word by healing (Mark 16:15-20; Acts 2:43; 3:1-12; 5:2-16; 6:8; 8:7-13; 11:19-22; 14:3, 27; 15:4, 12; 19:11-12; 28:9; Rom. 15:18-19, 29; 1Cor. 16:10; Php. 1:7; 1Thess. 2:13; Heb. 2:3-4).

The Holy Spirit was sent into the world to carry on the healing ministry (Acts 1:1-8; 2:33; 1Cor. 12; Heb. 2:3-4). Gifts of healing and other gifts are promised as the spiritual equipment of the body of Christ (Rom. 1:11; 12:6-8; 15:18-19, 29; 1Cor. 1:7; 12:1-11; Heb. 2:3-4).

Healing is provided as part of Christ’s atonement (Isa. 53:4-5; Matt. 8:16-17; 13:14-15; John 3:14; 10:10; Rom. 1:16; 8:11; 1Cor. 11:23-32; Gal. 3:13; Jas. 5:14-16; 1Pet. 2:24; 3Jn. 1:2; cp. Ex. 15:26; Ps. 91; 103:3). Healing is part of the children’s bread and their promised right by virtue of redemption (Matt. 7:7-11; 15:22-28; 17:20; 21:22; Mark 9:23; 11:22-24; Luke 13:16; John 3:14-16; 14:12-15; 15:7, 16; 16:23-26; 1Jn. 3:8, 20-22;5:14-15; 3Jn. 1:2).

Healing was not only for the Old Testament days (Exodus 15:26; Psalm 91; Psalm 103:3) and for the Millennium (Isaiah 30:26; Isaiah 33:24; Isaiah 35:1-10). It is also for this age, or the gospel is faulty and the new covenant worse than the old one (1Cor. 12:1-11; 2Cor. 3:6-15; Heb. 2:3-4).

Healing is part of salvation, for the Hebrew and Greek words for “salvation” all imply the ideas of forgiveness, healing, health, and full deliverance from the curse (Rom. 1:16; Gal. 3:13; 1Pet. 2:24). Healing can naturally be expected as part of the infinite care of God over His children (Matt. 6:10; 7:7-11; 17:20; 21:22; Mark 9:23; 11:22-24; Luke 11:1-13; 18:1-18; John 14:12-15; 15:7, 16; 16:23-26; Heb. 11:6; Jas. 1:4-8; 5:14-16).

Healing is on the same basis as forgiveness of sins-prayer and faith (Matt. 9:1-7; 13:15; 21:22; Acts 28:27; Jas. 1:4-8; 5:14-16; Heb. 11:6). Healing proves the resurrection of Christ and the descent of the Holy Spirit (Acts 1:4-8; 2:33; 3:16; 4:12; Rom. 8:11). God has provided all necessary means of healing and complete defeat of satanic powers (Mark 16:15-20; John 14:12-15; 2Cor. 10:4-5; Eph. 6:10-18; Jas. 4:7; 5:14-16; 1Pet. 2:24; 5:7-9).

Healing is always the will of God for His people who may: “ask what you will” (John 15:7); “whatsoever” (Matt. 21:22; John 14:12-15; 15:16); “anything” (John 14:14); “what things soever you desire” (Mark 11:22-24); and “much more” than earthly parents would or could give their children (Matt. 7:7-11).

Thus, it is clear in Scripture that physical healing is provided for in the Old and New Testaments. The New Testament is based upon better promises than the Old Testament (Heb. 8:6).