2 Peter 1:12-14 "Stir You Up" - James Dale Sermon Notes
Stir you up
(Part 1 of 2)
(Purpose of the True Message – “Reason for Writing”)
At the height of a worldwide persecution of Christianity, Peter realizes that he will die soon and wants to write one more letter to the flock of God that Christ told him to take care of. The subject that is weighing heavily on his mind is that false teachers that are coming into the church.
Knowing that the secret of recognizing what is false is to know what is true, he formulates a structure for his letter. We could title this book “Spiritual Maturity is the Remedy for False Teaching”.
Diligence (Exhortation to grow in the truth)
True Prophecy (Purpose of his message)
True Prophecy (Purpose of his message)
Diligence (Exhortation to keep growing in the truth)
You know the maps in the mall or at rest areas along the highway that say “You are here”? Well, here is the map of 2nd Peter, and we are here. (Put an asterisk on the second line.) Up to this point we have discussed the first half of chapter one … which is Peter’s explanation on what true Christian growth is, and why we should be diligent.
1. What is true Christian growth?
The Word reveals
The Spirit convicts
God does the work (produces fruit)
2. Why is it important that we show diligence to grow? (Use hand motions)
So we are not blind,
So we have confidence in our salvation,
So we have an abundant entrance to the kingdom.
Today Peter moves to his second main point … the purpose of the true message. Please turn to II Peter 1:12-21.
Stand and read
Pray and be seated
Peter’s comments on the true message comes in two parts:
1. Peter’s reason for writing (verses 12-15)
2. The basis for authority (verses 16-21)
We will discuss the first one today and the second one next Sunday. In his own words, why is Peter writing this letter?
I. “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” Verse 12
In Paul’s exhortation to Pastor Timothy he states, “Preach the word, be instant in season, out of season, reprove, rebuke, exhort with all long suffering and doctrine.”
This is Elder Peter’s heart also. In fact, if you notice, he considers it to be negligence if he does not put them in remembrance of the teaching of truth.
Notice that the people he is writing to already know the present truth that is talking about, but he wants them to be established in it. This verse reveals a teacher’s heart. Have you ever noticed that teachers often repeat themselves? Have you ever noticed that teachers often repeat themselves? They will take the same fact and maybe rephrase in five different ways, and when they finish, they review it again! Doesn’t it sometimes drive you crazy?
This reminds me of my dad. When he was telling a story and people laughed at it, he would invariably tell it again. Do you know anyone like that? Now, I notice that my brother is doing the same thing, and my wife tells me that I do also sometimes. But I’m beginning to think that maybe it is the way our brain works. We need constant reminders of what is good and true.
The word “established” is the same Greek word (“sterizo”) that is used in Luke 22:31,32.
And the Lord said, “Simon, Simon, behold, Satan hath desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat: but I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not: and when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren.
Peter eventually was “converted” that night before the crucifixion. In other words, he repented from denying his Lord. And now Peter wants to establish his flock in the present truth, to strengthen his brothers, as Christ admonished him. He does this by reminding them of things they already know.
This brings up the first of two major means of spiritual growth … the New Testament revelation. Remember in verses 3 and 4 he told them that God has given us everything pertaining to life and godliness and that it comes from His exceeding great and precious promises … the Word of God?
D. “Present truth”
Now we are going to understand that this revelation has two parts … the Old Testament revelation, and the New Testament revelation. As you recall, up to this point the people had only the Old Testament. Peter is reminding them that the apostolic teaching is the new revelation that God is giving, and that this “present truth” is God’s Word and the means for their growth. Listen to this description of the growth of the early church. Acts 2:42.
And they continued steadfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, and breaking of bread, and in prayers.
All of these apostles were eventually going to die, and so for a period of a hundred years or so God prompted them to write it down so He could preserve it like He did the Old Testament.
The apostles were aware that …
1. God was revealing a New Testament truth. 1:12
2. He was using them to do it. 3:2
3. Their writings were God-breathed Scripture. 3:16
This will become clearer as we continue through this book. This is one reason that I selected a reading plan that takes me through the Old Testament once in the year, but the New Testament and Psalms are read twice.
Therefore, the reason he is writing is to remind them to live in the “present truth” … the New Testament revelation of the truth.
II. Yea, I think it is meet, as long as I am in this tabernacle, to stir you up by putting you in remembrance. Verse 13
The word “meet” (dikaios) means “it is only right”. It refers to being righteous, wholly conformed to the will of God. Peter felt it was his righteous duty to remind them of the New Testament revelation that he has taught them, and to stir them up. But he was an apostle and an elder. Does that really refer to us?
B. “Stir you up”
Look at Hebrews 10:24,25.
And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and good works: not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.
I want to suggest that it is not only the pastor who has this job of stirring up each other up in the truth, it is all of us. That is one reason we meet together each week.
I would also like to suggest that the reason we are to do this is because we have a short time left. In Hebrews, the context clearly indicates that the day that is approaching is the day of judgment. However, when Peter was talking about why he wanted to stir them up, he saw the day approaching as his own death. Let’s read his own words:
III. Knowing that shortly I must put off this my tabernacle, even as or Lord Jesus Christ hath showed me. Verse 15
Christ had told Peter that he was going to die an unnatural death … that he would be martyred. Because of the persecution Peter knew it would probably be soon, and as we know from history he was right. Peter’s more urgent reason for stirring up the flock was his coming death. I can relate to that, and probably many of us in this room who have entered into the sunset of our lives.
What does this mean to us? Those of us that have chosen to worship at Freeze Community Church are a local body of believers. As such, we are to be deliberately involved in:
1. Personal growth (which was the first point that Peter made in this letter)
- The Word reveals
- The Spirit convicts
- I repent
- God does the work
2. Stir each other up
- Have orderly consistent services to attend
- Plan to come early and stay late
- Challenges to be in the word
- Share with each other during the week… such as emails and texts and letters
The founder of a certain ministry died a few years ago and a magazine covered the story. In interviews with people who knew him, a story emerged. This man had made it a practice to be in the Word on a daily basis, but more than that, he asked to Lord to give him a fresh new thought from the Word each day that he could share with any person the Lord brought into his life that day. This challenged me to do the same. And, by the way, the people that the Lord brings into my life include my wife and my children.
How can the Lord use you to “stir others up”?