Simeon Peter, a servant and apostle of Jesus Christ,
To those who have obtained a faith of equal standing with ours by the righteousness of our God and Saviour Jesus Christ:
May grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord.
His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us to his own glory and excellence, by which he has granted to us his precious and very great promises, so that through them you may become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped from the corruption that is in the world because of sinful desire.
Comment: Peter seems determined to put into his sentences as much as he possibly can. Sentence one ends with a colon, (and you can end a sentence with a colon, although there are rules as to what should follow after it!) Look at what he packs in before the colon –
- His original name (Simeon) and his Jesus given name.
- His position (slave) and calling (apostle).
- To whom he is writing listing i) the quality of their faith and ii) why, and iii) through whom, it works.
The colon is followed by four great concepts, each of which needs deep consideration. What is grace? Does ‘shalom’ translated here ‘peace’ mean what peace means in our understanding? Does multiplication here refer to growth? What is the relationship of faith to knowledge?
And the rest of the passage is one sentence. Sometimes our preacher in church puts up on the overhead the same verse several times but highlights each time either in bold or italics different words. Most of the people in the ancient gentile world were illiterate so they couldn’t read it but I wonder if the person reading out the letter re-read it many times emphasizing different words. I have underlined above several very significant phrases. And all that is just two sentences, although one has added bits after a colon!
Prayer: You call us to a simple child-like faith, but please help us not to be ‘simpletons’.