10 million Ukrainians without power because of Russia. Help us purchase electrical generators for churches.
Consider helping today!

Bible Commentaries

Bengel's Gnomon of the New Testament

2 Peter 1

Verse 1

2 Peter 1:1 . Συμεὼν Πέτρος , Simon Peter ) At the beginning of his former Epistle he had only placed his surname: here he adds his name also; at the close of his life reminding himself of his former condition, before he had received his surname. The character of this Epistle agrees in a remarkable manner with the former Epistle of Peter, and with the speeches of the same apostle in the Acts. See note on ch. 2 Peter 2:22 , 2 Peter 3:1 . It contains three parts, as the former Epistle.

I. The Inscription, 2 Peter 1:1-2 .

II. A renewed stirring up of a pure feeling; in which,

1. He exhorts those who are partakers of the same faith that they increase in the divine gifts, and give all diligence to their growth in grace, and in the knowledge of Jesus Christ, 2 Peter 1:3-11 .

2. He adds incitements:

1. From the firmness of true teachers,2 Peter 1:12-21; 2 Peter 1:12-21 .

2. From the wickedness of false teachers, 2Pe 2:1-22

3. He guards them against scoffers:

1. He refutes their error, 2 Peter 3:1-9 .

2. He describes the last day, with suitable exhortations, 2 Peter 3:10-14 .

III. The Conclusion; in which

1. He declares the agreement between himself and St Paul, 2 Peter 3:15-16 .

2. He repeats the sum of the Epistle, 2 Peter 3:17-18 .

δοῦλος καὶ ἀπόστολος , a servant and apostle ) a servant , as of the Lord Jesus; an apostle of the same, as Christ. ἰσότιμον , equally precious ) Faith has its preciousness , inasmuch as it lays hold of precious promises ; 2 Peter 1:4 . The faith of those who have seen Jesus Christ, as Peter and the rest of the apostles, and of those who believe without having seen Him, is equally precious , flowing from Jesus Christ: it lays hold of the same righteousness and salvation; 1Jn 1:3 ; 1 Peter 1:8 . ἡμῖν , with us ) the apostles; 2 Peter 1:18 . λαχοῦσι , who have received ) They did not acquire it for themselves. ἐν δικαιοσύνῃ , through the righteousness ) This is the ground of the expression, equally precious . It is this righteousness of God which is prior to faith ; for faith depends upon the righteousness. Respecting this righteousness of God , comp. Romans 1:17 ; Romans 3:26 , notes. The title of Saviour ( Σωτῆρος ) is appropriately added.

Verse 2

2 Peter 1:2 . Ἐν ἐπιγνώσει τοῦ Κυρίου ἡμῶν , through the knowledge of our Lord ) This short and simple reading seems to have been the original reading both of the Latin translator, and a little previously of the apostle himself. For this Epistle presupposes the knowledge of God ; 2 Peter 1:3 ; but it particularly urges the knowledge of our Lord , namely, Jesus Christ ; 2 Peter 1:8 ; 2Pe 2:20 ; 2 Peter 3:18 , where the conclusion answers to this beginning. 1

Verse 3

2 Peter 1:3 . Ὡς πάντα ἡμῖν , as all things to us ) There is a wonderful cheerfulness in this exordium, beginning with the exhortation itself, add , etc., 2 Peter 1:5 . For this is the object of the Epistle; 2Pe 1:13 ; 2 Peter 3:1 . All things , in this passage, and all , 2 Peter 1:5 , have reference to one another; for as the Protasis is here, so is the Apodosis there. As has the effect of explaining, as 2 Corinthians 5:20 . Comp. altogether the parable of the ten virgins, Matthew 25:0 . The flame is that which is imparted to us by God and from God, without any labour on our part: but the oil is that which man ought to add by his own diligence and faithfulness, that the flame may be fed and increased. Thus the matter is set forth without a parable in this passage of Peter: in 2 Peter 1:3-4 , we have the flame; but in 2 Peter 1:5-6 , and those which follow, we have that which man himself ought to add [lit. to pour upon it], the presence of Divine grace being presupposed. τῆς θείας δυνάμεως αὐτοῦ , the Divine power of Him ) of Him , that is, God : for this is to be repeated from the word divine. From the power of God proceeds all power to life and godliness. τὰ πρὸς ζωὴν καὶ εὐσέβειαν ) those things which pertain unto life from God, and earnestness towards God . Observe, it is plainly not by godliness that we obtain life. The Divine glory imparts life (comp. Romans 6:4 , note); His power, godliness . To the one corruption is opposed, to the other lust ; 2 Peter 1:4 . δεδωρημένης , has given ) Thus δεδώρηται , He hath given: used twice in an active sense. Thus Genesis 30:20 , Septuagint, δεδώρηται ὁ Θεός μοι δῶρον καλόν , God hath given me a goodly gift . τοῦ καλέσαντος , of Him that called us ) To this refer the calling in 2 Peter 1:10 . The calling and knowledge are correlative terms. It is the knowledge of God which is meant; and to this God calls us. ἰδίᾳ δόξῃ καὶ ἀρετῇ , by His own glory and virtue ) This is an explanation of what His Divine power is: so that the natural attributes of God have reference to His glory ; those attributes which are called moral, have reference to His virtue . The two are closely united.

Verse 4

2 Peter 1:4 . διʼ ὧν , by which ) that is, by His glory and virtue . His glory causes, that the promises are very great ; His virtue , that they are precious . ἡμῖν γένησθε , to us ye might become ) He now gradually approaches to the exhortation. And the expression, equally precious , in 2 Peter 1:1 , supports the change from the first person to the second. ἐπαγγέλματα δεδώρηται , has given us promises ) The promise itself is a gift; then also that which follows it, the thing promised. Peter, both when speaking in the Acts, and when writing in his Epistles, with great solemnity , σεμνῶς , is accustomed to put substantives in the plural number. ἳνα διὰ τούτων , that by these ) that is, by the glory and virtue of Him. Communion itself with God was promised: wherefore Peter might have said because ; but he says that , with greater force. For the promise is given, that being allured by it, we may obtain the thing promised, which is great and precious. θείας κοινωνοὶ φύσεως , partakers of the Divine nature ) The Divine nature is God Himself. Thus we have Divine power , 2 Peter 1:3 ; excellent glory , 2 Peter 1:17 ; the holiness of God , Hebrews 12:10 , for God Himself . See Macarius, Homil. 39. In like manner, the nature of man , etc., is used, James 3:7 . As escaping is opposed to partakers , so corruption through lust is opposed to the Divine nature . Moreover glory and corruption, virtue and lust , are contraries. And thus the title, the Divine nature , includes glory and virtue ; and the same is called the Divine power , inasmuch as it is the origin of all that is good; and the Divine nature , inasmuch as it admits us to itself. But there is a gradation; and these two things differ as a part and the whole, namely, to receive the gifts of the Divine POWER ( δυνάμεως ), and to he a partaker of the Divine NATURE, that is, to become holy; comp. Romans 1:20 . ἀποφυγόντες , escaping ) hastily and swiftly. Φεύγω , I flee ; ἀποφευγω , I flee from , escape. This flight is here put, not so much for our duty, as for a Divine benefit, accompanying communion with God: comp. ch. 2 Peter 2:18 ; 2 Peter 2:20 . τῆς ἐν κόσμῳ ἐν ἐπιθυμίᾳ φθορᾶς , the corruption which is in the world through lust ) ch. 2 Peter 2:20 ; 2 Peter 2:18-19 . The sentiment is: In the world is corruption through lust.

Verse 5

2 Peter 1:5 . Καὶ , even ) also. αὐτὸ τοῦτο , this very thing ) The answer of the godly towards the Divine gifts is accurately expressed. ΑὐΤῸ ΤΟῦΤΟ is used as it were adverbially, for ΚΑΤʼ ΑὐΤῸ ΤΟῦΤΟ , “according to this very thing.” ΣΠΟΥΔῊΝ , diligence ) Diligence comprises many things; 2 Corinthians 7:11 , note; and in Peter the things which follow whence give diligence , 2 Peter 1:10 , refers to this; and so, to endeavour , 2 Peter 1:15 ; 2 Peter 3:14 . παρεισενέγκαντες , introducing ) παρά , by the way , indicates modesty. God acts: we are diligent. ἐπιχορηγήσατε , supply, exhibit, minister additionally ) The corresponding word is, shall be supplied or ministered , 2 Peter 1:11 . Our diligence follows the gifts of God; an entrance into the kingdom follows our diligence. ἐν τῇ πίστει , in the faith ) This is called knowledge , 2 Peter 1:3 , by which grace and truth are recognised; and God supplies this to us, just as He does life. Faith is the gift of God; Ephesians 2:8 : therefore we are not commanded to minister additionally faith, but in faith those fruits which are mentioned, to the number of seven, faith leading the band, and love bringing up the rear. ὑμῶν , your ) Taken with faith ; 1 Peter 1:7 ; 1Pe 1:9 ; 1 Peter 1:21 . τὴν ἀρετην , virtue ) by which you may imitate the virtue of God, 2 Peter 1:3 , and actively perform all things which the spiritual life undertakes. Every present step produces and renders easy that which follows: the following tempers and perfects the preceding. But this is the order of nature, rather than of time. Ἀρετὴ , virtue , [not in the common use of the term, but] a strenuous tone of mind and vigour; 1 Peter 1:13 . This is the result of faith ; 2Co 4:13 ; 2 Corinthians 4:16 , at the beginning. Next in order is [the fruit of virtue ] γνῶσις , knowledge or moderation ; comp. Romans 15:14 , note. Virtue makes us active, watchful, circumspect, separate [or discreet ], so as to consider what is to be done or avoided, for the sake of God, ourselves, and others; and in what manner this is to be done, and where and when, etc.; 1 Corinthians 16:18 , at the end. Next in order is ἐγκράτεια , abstinence . This is the result of γνῶσις , since it is this which distinguishes evil from good, and teaches us to flee from evil. Next in order is ὑπομονὴ , patience . Incontinence weakens the mind; continence banishes weakness, and adds strength. Next in order is εὐσέβεια , godliness : it sanctifies the natural affections towards parents and others, yea, even towards the Creator. Patience ( ὑπομονὴ ) removes all the hindrances to godliness . Next in order is φιλαδελφία , brotherly affection . He who has his natural affections sanctified, advances to στοργὴν , a natural affection , that is purely spiritual. Ἀγάπη , love to all, completes this company (chorus) of graces; Colossians 3:14 , throughout. He who is rightly disposed towards his brethren , extends his love to those who are less nearly connected with him, and even to enemies. Hence it is evident how each present step produces and renders easy that which follows. Moreover, in what way each step which follows, tempers and perfects that which goes before, will readily appear, if this scheme be duly considered in a retrograde order. He who has love , will exercise brotherly affection without partiality. He who has brotherly affection , will perceive that godliness is altogether necessary. Εὐσεβὴς , the godly , will mix nothing stoical with τῇ ὑπομονῇ , his patience . To the patient man abstinence is easy. Ἐγκρατὴς , the continent man, with calmness of mind thoroughly weighs all things, and has γνῶσιν . Γνῶσις , knowledge , is on its guard, lest sudden impulse should carry away ἀρετὴν , its virtue . The opposites are connected in a similar manner in the case of the wicked: unbelief produces vice , etc. γνῶσιν , moderation ) 1 Peter 3:7 , note.

Verse 6

2 Peter 1:6 . Ἐγκράτειαν , abstinence ) which avoids evil desires. Abstain . ὑπομονὴν , patience ) by which adversities and adversaries are endured. Sustain [have endurance]. εὐσέβειαν , godliness ) By which the faithful look to God above all things. Εὐσέβεια may be affection towards relatives, parents, brothers, etc.; but it is a sanctified affection. Comp. 1 Timothy 5:4 .

Verse 7

2 Peter 1:7 . Φιλαδελφίαν , brotherly affection ) towards the saints who are united with you in God. τὴν ἀγάπην , love ) From brotherly affection is deduced love : 1 Peter 1:22 .

Verse 8

2 Peter 1:8 . Ταῦτα , these things ) Virtue, moderation , etc. A condition is involved: If you have these things, then indeed you have true knowledge. Comp. 2 Peter 1:9 , for . ὑμῖν ὑπάρχοντα , if they are in you ) in truth. The same phrase occurs, Acts 3:6 . The expression, not barren , refers to this. καὶ πλεονάζοντα , and abound ) copiously. Abundance quickly follows truth. The expression, nor unfruitful , refers to this: that is, you shall have the fruit, which the knowledge of Jesus Christ produces, in excellence and abundance: ch. 2 Peter 1:3 . καθίστησιν , they render or establish ) at present. εἰς , in ) Comp. εἰς , in, in respect to , Romans 4:20 . ἐπίγνωσιν , the acknowledging ) the recognition , united with the cleansing from sins .

Verse 9

2 Peter 1:9 . Γὰρ , for ) in its proper sense. τυφλός ἐστι , κ . τ . λ ., he is blind , etc.) The steps of his relapses are depicted by a choice retrogression or inversion of style. Such a Man 1:1 ) forgets that he was cleansed from his sins, which are past ; 2) he is dim-sighted as to present privileges, 2 Peter 1:12 ; 2 Peter 3:0 ) he is altogether blind as to those that are future , 2 Peter 1:11 . The inversion of the style consists in this, that the reference to past time in the text is put in the last place, whereas according to the nature of the subject it should be said, past, present, future . μυωπάζων , dim-sighted ) Hesychius, μυωπάζων , ὀφθαλμιῶν affected with ophthalmia . λήθην λαβὼν ) having obtained forgetfulness . A most appropriate phrase, the participle having obtained expressing that which the man willingly undergoes; comp. note on Romans 5:19 . He who reflects how many are the old sins from which he has been cleansed, the more easily abstains.

Verse 10

2 Peter 1:10 . Μᾶλλον , the more ) They who have diligence ought to have more. ἀδελφοὶ , brethren ) Peter never employs this address in the former Epistle, he uses it once only in the latter: from which the weightiness of this passage is plainly seen. βεβαίαν , firm ) This confirmation takes place by means of virtue, moderation, abstinence , etc.; and therefore there follows immediately, for if ye do these things . Comp. Hebrews 6:10 . βεβαίαν ὑμῶν τὴν κλῆσιν καὶ ἐκλογην , your calling and election firm ) that is, yourselves firm in your calling and election. For the confirmation belongs to those to whom the falling would otherwise belong. The calling is put before the election , as far as relates to us.

Verse 11

2 Peter 1:11 . Πλουσίως ) abundantly ; so that at any time, without stumbling , you may be able to enter, not as having escaped from a shipwreck, or from fire, but as it were in triumph; and that things past, things present, and things to come may profit you. Here Peter does not now say, scarcely , as in his first Epistle, 1 Peter 4:8 . This expression answers to abound , in 2 Peter 1:8 .

Verse 12

2 Peter 1:12 . Διὸ , wherefore ) He speaks from an anticipation of his own immediate departure and entrance into the kingdom; 2 Peter 1:15 ; 2 Peter 1:11 . μελλήσω ὑμᾶς ἀεὶ ὑπομιμνήσκειν [1] ) The force of this reading will scarcely be understood by those who are not adequately experienced in the usages of the Greek language, or at any rate by those who have not a nice perception of the beauties of the verb μέλλω . The more recent Greeks themselves have written οὐκ ἀμελήσω , I will not be negligent , from μελλήσω · Μέλλειν , in German, sollen, to owe . Thus Gregory of Neocæsareia, ἀρετὰς ἔχειν ἔτι μέλλω , I do not yet possess virtues . Panegyric on Orige [2] , pp. 86, 203, ed. Stutgard. And it is commonly said, he ought to come ; that is, he is not yet come . And thus Peter says, I will regard you as always (needing) to be admonished : I will never think how much I have admonished you; I will think this only, that you ought to be admonished by me. The present, μέλλω , conveys the notion of a future action; wherefore μελλήσω is an accumulated future; I shall be about to admonish . Hesychius, μελλήσω , σπουδάσω , I will earnestly endeavour . And this very synonym, σπουδάσω , follows shortly after in 2 Peter 1:15 , where the earnestness ( σπουδὴ ) of the apostle is also to be observed extending itself by letters even beyond (after) his decease; and thence the appropriate use of the word μνήμη (memory), with reference to his death. Ammonius, Μνήμη μὲν γίνεται νεκροῦ · μνεία δὲ ζῶντος . μνήμη is said with reference to the dead , and μνεία , with reference to the living . See Ecclesiastes 1:11 , etc., Septuagint. ἀεὶ , always ) He gives the reason why he writes a second epistle so shortly after the first. Peter regards it as a fixed principle, that there is more and more need of admonition on account of the increasing corruption of wicked men: ch. 2 Peter 2:2 . εἰδότας , knowing ) the truth. ἐστηριγμένους , established ) Closely connected with this is the word διεγείρειν , to stir up , 2 Peter 1:13 . He wishes them to be both firm and as much on the alert as possible. παρούσῃ , present ) Truth is present, as in the New Testament: 1 Peter 5:12 , note.

[1] Μελλήσω is read by ABC Vulg. Memph. Theb. But Rec. Text, without any of the oldest authorities, has οὐκ ἀμελήσω . E.

[2] rigen (born about 186 A.D., died 253 A.D., a Greek father: two-thirds of the N. Test. are quoted in his writings). Ed. Vinc. Delarue, Paris. 1733, 1740, 1759.

Verse 13

2 Peter 1:13 . Δὲ , but ) A particle of explaining or declaring. σκηνὠματι , tabernacle ) There is a reference to the immortality of the soul, and its brief abode in the mortal body, together with the easy departure of believers.

Verse 14

2 Peter 1:14 . Ταχινή ἐστιν ) is sudden . The present. They who are for a long time sick, are able as yet to feed others. The cross was not about to permit that to Peter. Therefore he first does that which he has to do. ἀπόθεσις , the laying aside ) A violent process, but still wished for. Thus departure , 2 Peter 1:15 . ἐδήλωσε , hath disclosed or showed ) He had long ago showed this; John 21:18-19 , When thou shalt be old . The “old age” of Peter was now close at hand . It is possible that some other indication had afterwards been given him.

Verse 15

2 Peter 1:15 . Σπουδάσω , I will endeavour ) On this depends ὑμᾶς ἔχειν , that you may have [“be able”]. Thus also the Latins construct the verb studeo . ἑκάστοτε , at every time ) as often as there shall be occasion. ἔχειν ) An elegant phrase, ἔχω ποιεῖσθαι . But they were about to have it [in their power], since this very Epistle of Peter was left to them.

Verse 16

2 Peter 1:16 . Γὰρ , for ) He shows that the subject was one, respecting which it was befitting that he should write, though even on the point of death; alleging the testimony of apostles, and the discourse of prophets. σεσοφισμένοις ) πλαστοῖς , ch. 2 Peter 2:3 , cunningly devised . μύθοις ) fables , such as the heathen had respecting their gods. ἐξακολουθησαντες ) The ἐξ denotes error; ch. 2Pe 2:2 ; 2 Peter 2:15 . There is no such error in this matter. δύναμιν καὶ παρουσίαν , the power and presence ) Hendiadys: that is, most present majesty. Δύναμις , power , is opposed to fables . Comp. 1 Corinthians 4:20 , where word and power are opposed to each other. The Transfiguration on the Mount is a pattern of the revelation of glory at the last day; and the whole testimony of the apostles looks to this revelation: Acts 10:42 . ἐπόπται , eye-witnesses ) Admitted to His innermost secrets; for instance, on the Mount. ἐκείνου , of Him ) Ἐκεῖνος , He , denotes something distant, and wonderful, and great. μεγαλειότητος , majesty ) As the name of the Father and the Son are correlative terms, so are magnificent glory and majesty. Magnificent glory in the text is ascribed to the Father; majesty (magnitudo) or μεγαλειότης (for the Greek word differs somewhat from the Latin), to the Son.

Verse 17

2 Peter 1:17 . Λαβὼν , having received ) The participle is put for the indicative. He received , by the testimony of His Father. τιμὴν καὶ δόξαν , honour and glory ) divine. The word glory is immediately after repeated. φωνῆς ἐνεχθεισης , when a voice was borne ) This is emphatically repeated in the next verse. αὐτῷ ) to Him alone. τῆς μεγαλοπρεποῦς δόξης , the magnificent Glory ) So God Himself is termed.

Verse 18

2 Peter 1:18 . Ἡμεῖς , we ) John also was still alive. ἐξ οὐρανοῦ , from heaven ) from God. τῷ ἁγίῳ , the holy ) The mountain was holy from that very circumstance; at any rate, at that very time.

Verse 19

2 Peter 1:19 . Ἔχομεν βεβαιότερον , we have a more firm ) He does not say, more clear, but more firm . Wherefore it is here unnecessary to inquire [or discuss ] concerning the difference in the clearness of prophecy before and after its fulfilment. But, undoubtedly, the word of prophecy becomes more firm from its fulfilment: Romans 15:8 . For the same reason the word spoken by prophets is not more firm than that spoken by apostles, either in itself or in relation to those to whom Peter writes: 2 Peter 1:12 ; 2 Peter 1:16 . [3] Even the word of prophecy was always firm of itself; but it became more firm , I will not say in the minds of the apostles, but at all events in the minds of their hearers (in whose name he says, we , not ye have ), to whom the apostles were demonstrating the complete fulfilment which had already taken place in Jesus Christ, and were, moreover, drawing inferences from this as to its future fulfilment. The day when it dawns upon, you, confirms the fact that you saw correctly, however indistinctly, the objects which you had already seen more faintly by the light of a lamp. See note on 2 Peter 1:20 , does not become . τὸν προφητικὸν λόγον , the word of prophecy ) The words of Moses, of Isaiah, and of all the prophets, make up one word, in every way consistent with itself. For Peter does not now bring forward individual sayings, but he embraces their whole testimony, as now laid open. Comp. Acts 10:43 . Moses, too, had been with them on the mount. καλῶς , well ) Peter does not upbraid them for their dulness, in still attaching greater credit to the prophets than to himself and the rest of the apostles. Every one ought to praise that which is the support of his own faith, on which he especially rests. He calls them, however, to further objects. προσέχοντες ὡς , taking heed as ) The light of the day does not take away the beholding and looking upon the lamp , but yet it overpowers it. By the greater light, the lesser one is both acknowledged to be lesser, and is strengthened: by the lesser light, the excellence of the greater one is shown. [Grateful remembrance of it is inculcated; comp. ch. 2 Peter 3:2 . V. g.] λύχνῳ , a lamp ) which is used in the night. [But the lamp of prophecy even still benefits those now walking in the day. V. g.] φαίνοντι ) which was shining , [but Engl. Vers., present , “that shineth.”] It is imperfect (as ὄντες , when we were , 2Pe 1:18 ); for there follows, until the day should dawn , etc., with the same force of time, not in the present, διαυγάζῃ , ἀνατέλλῃ , (may) dawn, rise . αὐχμηρῷ , dark ) where there is neither water nor light. τόπῳ , place ) Such a place is our heart. ἕως οὗ , until ) The use of Scripture is not altogether taken away in the case of the enlightened, especially in convincing others, as we learn from the example of Peter himself. Comp. until , [4] Matthew 1:25 . And yet the enlightened now possess that very thing of which the prophets testify. Wherefore John, for instance, in his first Epistle, while he writes to such persons, and so often reminds us that he writes, never appeals to the prophetic, It is written ; he only adduces the testimony of the apostles: for the darkness was past, and the true light was now shining; 1 John 2:8 . And so you may find that the phrase, It is written , is of much more frequent occurrence in the older books of the New Testament, than in those which were written afterwards. ἡμέρα , the day ) The full light of the New Testament. See how the light of a lamp differs from that of the day! just so does the light of the Old Testament differ from that of the New. See the first Epistle of John 2:8 . διαυγάσῃ , should dawn ) Having burst through the darkness. φωσφόρος , the morning star ) Jesus Christ: Revelation 22:16 .

[3] Nor is even the word of the prophets preferred either to the seeing or to the hearing of the apostles. The “ day ,” in fact, is what prevails in the New Testament: and a choice beam of the day itself was the seeing and hearing on the holy mountain: so far is it from being the case, that the palm must he given to the “ lamp .” V. g.

[4] Including the time fixed on as the limit. So here until does not exclude the time being, when the day was shining. E.

Verse 20

2 Peter 1:20 . Τοῦτο , this ) The reason of the phrase, ye do well , inasmuch as ye know this . πρῶτον ) before I speak: German, vorhin, before . Thus ch. 2 Peter 3:3 . In these Epistles, Peter does not teach, but reminds. προφητεία γραφῆς ) prophecy , which is contained in the body of Scripture . ἰδίας ἐπιλύσεως οὐ γίνεται , does not become of private interpretation ) ἐπίλυσις from ἐπιλύω , to explain ; Mark 4:34 ; Acts 19:39 . פתר some Greek versions render ἐπέλυσε , Genesis 41:12 . As the sight of the apostles is opposed to cunningly devised fables, so φορὰ , the motion or inspiration of the prophets, is opposed to private interpretation. Therefore that is called ἐπίλυσις , or interpretation, by which the prophets themselves opened to mortals things which were before altogether shut up. Prophecy is not at first of man, nor does it ever so far depart from itself as to begin to be the word of private, that is, of human interpretation ( ἐπιλύσεως ), but it is altogether of Divine unfolding or revelation, and is known to be so in its results and issue; and it even becomes more firm. So for, 2 Peter 1:21 , agrees with this. οὐ γίνεται , does not become) That which has once been truly spoken by the prophets, remains truth even to the present day. A lamp is not the day; but still it prevails over the darkness.

Verse 21

2 Peter 1:21 . Θελήματι , by the will ) the desire: Jeremiah 23:26 , Septuagint. Man often feigns by fables, or conceals by error, that which he wishes . Comp. willingly , ch. 2 Peter 3:5 . ἀνθρώπου ) of man , alone. There is an antithesis between this and holy men of God , the definition of the prophets. ἠνέχθη , was borne ) Thus 2 Peter 1:17-18 . Heb. משׂא from נשׂא , to bear. ποτὲ ) ever, at a remote or nearer time: hence prophecy, without the article, is used indefinitely. ἀλλʼ ὑπὸ , but by) Comp. John 11:51 . φερόμενοι , carried) This has reference to ἠνέχθη , was borne. A most beautiful antithesis: they did not bear, but were borne: they were passive, not active instruments. That which is borne, is borne by no force of its own; it does not move and advance anything forward by its own labour. Comp. respecting the prophets, Psalms 45:2 ; Jeremiah 36:18 . Shortly afterwards, the word spake denotes also the readiness with which they uttered prophecies. ἐλάλησαν , spake) This has also reference to the pen of the written word. They spake: the past tense shows that Peter is speaking particularly of the prophets of the Old Testament. Comp. ch. 2 Peter 2:1 , note, and ch. 2 Peter 3:2 . ἅγιοι , holy) Because they had the Holy Spirit.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Bengel, Johann Albrecht. "Commentary on 2 Peter 1". Bengel's Gnomon of the New Testament. 1897.