This is part of the 66 in 52 Bible Journaling Challenge. Over the course of the 52 weeks in 2018, I will focus in on one verse from each book of the Bible with many others who have signed up to join me. Each week I will be posting a summary page with some thought about that week’s book(s) of the Bible along with some links that may help our reflection. Click here to sign up if you want to join us at any point along the journey!
The Big Picture of 1 Peter:
Peter wrote two letters to the early church. The first of these, 1 Peter, was likely written around A.D. 60 as an encouragement to Christians in the midst of persecution. He reminds them often in the letter of how God has chosen them, loves them, and calls them to live in relationship with Him (1:2, 20, 2:9-10, 5:10). Peter speaks at length to what life as a Christian looks like, that, as Paul put it earlier, we are a new creation. Even in the face of suffering we can live in ways that honor God and serve others. A neat section in chapter 2 (vs 21-25) gives a beautiful picture of who Jesus is and the gifts that are ours because of His suffering.
The Big Picture of 2 Peter:
Peter’s second letter was likely sent 3-4 years after the first, again, to believers in general verses in a specific location like we’ve seen with some of Paul’s letters. He repeats a little of his encouragement to live holy lives despite struggles, though the focus of this letter seems to be more of warning. He raises up especially the issue of false teachers and encourages the believers to pay attention to scripture as a way to distinguish what is true and what is false. The last chapter also speaks to the last day, specifically that we won’t know when that day will come. Despite that fact, we look forward to that day.
The Use of Other Scripture in His Letter:
One key characteristic of Peter’s writing is the use of other Scriptures–either quoting them directly or referencing them. Here are some of the ones he referenced:
- 1 Peter 1:16 – “You must be holy because I am holy.” – Leviticus 11:44-45, 19:2, 20:7
- 1 Peter 1:24-25 – “People are like grass; their beauty is like a flower in the field. The grass withers and the flower fades. But the word of the Lord remains forever.” – Isaiah 40:6-8
- 1 Peter 2:6 – “I am placing a cornerstone in Jerusalem, chosen for great honor, and anyone who trusts in him will never be disgraced.” – Isaiah 28:16, Philippians 4:18
- 1 Peter 2:7 – “The stone that the builders rejected has now become the cornerstone.” – Psalm 118:22
- 1 Peter 2:8 – “He is the stone that makes people stumble, the rock that makes them fall.” – Isaiah 8:14
- 1 Peter 2:22 – “He never sinned, nor ever deceived anyone.” – Isaiah 53:9
- 1 Peter 2:24 – “… by his wounds you are healed.” – Isaiah 53:5
- 1 Peter 3:10-12 – “If you want to enjoy life and see many happy days, keep your tongue from speaking evil and your lips from telling lies. Turn away from evil and do good. Search for peace, and work to maintain it. The eyes of the Lord watch over those who do right, and his ears are open to their prayers. But the Lord turns his face against those who do evil.” – Psalm 34:12-16
- 1 Peter 4:18 – “If the righteous are barely saved, what will happen to godless sinners?” – Proverbs 11:31
- 1 Peter 5:5 – “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.” – Proverbs 3:34
- 2 Peter 1:17 – “This is my dearly loved Son, who brings me great joy.” – Matthew 17:5, Mark 9:7, Luke 9:35
- 2 Peter 2:22 – “A dog returns to its vomit.” – Proverbs 26:11
- 2 Peter 3:13 – “But we are looking forward to the new heavens and new earth he has promised…” – Isaiah 65:17
A Few Key Verses and Possible Reflection Questions/Prayers:
Some of us are planning to read through the whole book or books each week, while others are just focusing in on one verse per book. This section of the weekly intro post might help you narrow down a verse to reflect on for the week, but you do not have to choose one of these verse, pick any section of the book you want! These are just some ideas.
- “… you are a chosen people. You are royal priests, a holy nation, God’s very own possession. As a result, you can show others the goodness of God, for he called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.” (1 Peter 2:9-10)
REFLECTION: What darkness has God called you out of? How does it compare to the light? How can you show others that goodness this week?
- “Once you were like sheep who wandered away. But now you have turned to your Shepherd, the Guardian of your souls.” (1 Peter 2:25)
REFLECTION: How does it make you feel to think of God as the Guardian of your soul?
- “In his kindness God called you to share in his eternal glory by means of Christ Jesus. So after you have suffered a little while, he will restore, support, and strengthen you, and he will place you on a firm foundation.” (1 Peter 5:10)
REFLECTION: How might it help to know that any current suffering is temporary? How can you hold out hope for the restoration, support, and strength He promises? Do you see glimpses of it even now?
- “By his divine power, God has given us everything we need for living a godly life. We have received all of this by coming to know him, the one who called us to himself by means of his marvelous glory and excellence.” (2 Peter 1:3)
REFLECTION: How have you seen these statements to be true in your life?
- “But we are looking forward to the new heavens and new earth he has promised, a world filled with God’s righteousness.” (2 Peter 3:13)
REFLECTION:What are you most looking forward to about the new heavens and new earth promised?
Some Other Resources:
- The Bible Project summary video for 1 Peter
- The Bible Project summary video for 2 Peter
- A Pinterest board with resources and pictures for 1 and 2 Peter
- The 66 in 52 Schedule and Tracking Sheet
So now it’s your turn! Pick a verse and settle in this week, or read through the whole book. If you post any picture or blogs on social media, tag them with #66in52challenge so we can all share in this journey together!