2 Peter 1:1-2
Simon Peter, a servant and an apostle of Jesus Christ…
I. THE MATTER. "Grace and peace."
1. We are here taught the Christian use of salutings; such godly compliments are not to be neglected.
2. We are further taught here to use good forms in saluting. "Grace and peace," gracious, not grievous; holy, not hollow; blessings, not curses.
(1) Grace. By this is generally meant the receiving of the sinner into the covenant of mercy, into God's favour by Christ.
(a) Many prophets and holy men of the first times lived in grace, but not under grace.
(b) Many in our times live under grace, but not in grace, hearing the gospel and receiving the grace of God in vain (2 Corinthians 6:1).
(c) The unbelieving Gentiles were neither in grace nor under grace.
(d) They that now believe are both under grace and in it. Under it, as released from the damning power of sin (Romans 8:1); in it, as delivered from the reigning power of sin.
(2) "Peace." I take it specially for the tranquillity of conscience; that which follows righteousness.
(3) I come from considering this sweet pair of graces asunder, to join them again together.
(a) It is not enough to wish grace to the souls of our friends, but also peace; that is, health to their bodies, and other temporal blessings.
(b) The apostle puts grace before peace.
(c) The apostle wisheth to us the best things, grace and peace. There be two fiends that torment us — sin and a bad conscience. Now grace delivers us from sin, and peace doth quiet the conscience.
II. THE MEASURE OF HIS WISH: the increase and multiplication of these blessings. For the goods of this world, the best point of arithmetic is division: it is a better thing to give than to receive, said our Lord. But for heavenly graces, the best point is multiplication.
1. There is no plenary perfection in this life, for we must still be in multiplying our graces.
2. We must seek to multiply our grace and peace. He hath nothing that thinks he hath enough.
III. THE MANNER. "Through the knowledge," etc. This means not a mere knowledge, but an acknowledgment, a reflective and doubling knowledge. There is knowledge mental, sacramental, and experimental. The first is by the light of nature; the second by the power of grace; the third by the practice of life and continual proving the favour of God.
1. The means of multiplying grace and peace in our hearts is knowledge of God (John 17:3; Psalm 9:10).
2. There is something in grace and knowledge still wanting, that must be multiplied and increased; for we know but in part.
3. There is no knowing of God with comfort, but through Jesus Christ (Matthew 11:27). Without Him, he that increaseth knowledge, increaseth his own sorrow (Ecclesiastes 1:18).
Parallel VersesKJV: 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: