The Astonishing Last Words of Peter

2 Peter 3:18 "But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be the glory both now and to the day of eternity. Amen."

 

           The dying man or women chooses their last words with great intentionality. Imagine having only one more day to live. Would you chose your words wisely? Last words carry great weight. The apostle Peter has some last words for us. To be fair, the apostle died after he penned the second letter ascribed to his name. We know the last words contained in 2 Peter are not the last words he ever wrote or spoke. However, to state the obvious, we do have the last Biblical words of Peter. They are astonishing!

           Consider Peter. Jesus called him out of fishing for fish to fish for men. Ole' Pete was one of the 12. We know a lot about this guy right? Peter had his highs and lows. He was consistently inconsistent. He walked on water with Jesus and he denied knowing Jesus. A high and a low. Not long after the whole denying Jesus thing, he preached a sermon about the cross of Christ complete with fire! Three thousand people responded in repentance, faith and baptism. Peter was filled with the Holy Spirit and guess what? He was still a mess. The Apostle's consistent inconsistency reared it's ugly head again and the reward he got was a Pauline rebuke. Reason? Peter forgot the basics. He forgot the very gospel he so passionately preached. 

           I love Peter's last words. What did Peter need? What did the recipients of his letter need? What do you and I need? 2 Peter 3:18 "But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be the glory both now and to the day of eternity. Amen." We need to "Grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ." We need to remember Him! We need to remember that this life is not about gaining glory for ourselves through glorifying ourselves. Our life is to be lived "To him be the glory both now and to the day of eternity." 

           The Apostle Peter, wise in his older age, understands what he needs and what others need. It's like Peter says "Here it is! Here is the main point! Here is what I needed when I was younger and what I need right now! Hear this church! You need to grow in the grace and knowledge or our Lord Jesus Christ." The Holy Spirit was making Peter strong. Christian strength is found in those parting words. As tradition tells us, Peter died in strength. He died having grown in Christ. He died living for Christ glory.   

            We would be wise to listen to Peter's parting words. Today and forever, may we grow in the grace and knowledge of Christ and live for His glory.