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Bible Passage 2 Peter

The Spiritual Value of a Good Memory

  • Tony Raker
Date preached October 2, 2022

2 Peter 3:1-2 The Spiritual Value of a Good Memory

Peter makes several references to the danger of forgetting and the great importance of having a good memory regarding lifestyle and spiritual things. Memory is a wonderful gift from God but, like every other good gift, it can be used in a bad and a harmful way. Satan tries to turn the benefits of memory into a curse, by reminding us of things in the past about ourselves and about others which God wants us to forget (Phil. 3:13). By remembering when we should forget, we often harm ourselves, the church, and other people. If the opposite is also true, what does God want us to remember? (1) His great goodness to us, His mercy and His faithfulness (Dt. 5:15; Luke 22:19). (2) All those things in the past which we can profitably use for comfort and warning in our lives (Dt. 7:18; 24:9; Ps. 143:5; Luke 17:32; Acts 11:16). (3) All those things in other people’s lives which will help us to understand and to love them better (Heb. 13:3).

2 Peter 3:1-2: “This is now the second letter that I am writing to you, beloved. In both of them I am stirring up your sincere mind by way of reminder, 2 that you should remember the predictions of the holy prophets and the commandment of the Lord and Savior through your apostles

  • Grammatical Usage: “stirring up” or in the Greek, “diegeiró” meaning, “arouse completely”; “sincere” or “eilikrinés” meaning, “pure; properly, rightly judged”; “remember” or “mimnéskó” meaning, “actively recall; bring to mind” not off-handedly or merely incidentally. Note: the high level of personal (self) involvement and personal interest motivating this remembering accounts for why it is in the Greek middle voice: denoting that the subject is an agent of an action and somehow concerned with the action.
  • Literal Interpretation: “Beloved, this is now the second letter I have written you, in both of which I hope to arouse your mind in pure and right judgment with a reminder (2) in order that you will actively recall the words previously spoken by the holy prophets and the commandments of the Lord and Savior via the apostles.
  • Contextual/Comparison: God keeps His Word: God continually uses His Word. Notice three clear exhortations we are given about using our memories in the right way:
  1. In 2 Peter 1:9 we are exhorted to remember what the Lord has done for us.

This verse describes those people whose memory had been made oblivious of the fact that certain great things had happened. We are all in danger of forgetting what the Lord has done for us. What are these?

  • He has cleansed us from our sins (2 Peter 1:9) – and to get the force of these words we should compare 51:7; 65:3; Pr. 16:6; Is. 6:7; Heb. 1:3. The first joy we experience when we become a Christian is the joy of sins forgiven and cleansed (Ps. 51:12), and never forget this!
  • He has given us “everything we need for life and godliness” (2 Peter 1:3) – and it also emphasizes the fact that this ‘everything’ is brought to us and made real in our experience “through our knowledge of him.” In other words, when we come to know the Lord Himself, we come into possession of every other worthwhile knowledge ( 1:3; Phil. 3:10) and never forget this!
  • He has called us “by his own glory and goodness” (2 Peter 1:3) – it simply means that He has given us a measure of heaven upon earth now and the promise of heaven as our future. Do not lose the wonder of this great fact – never forget this!
  • He has given us “his very great and precious promises” by which to live the Christian life (2 Peter 1:4). How can we live in the light of 5-7 unless we can claim such promises as Is. 41:13; Phil. 4:19; 2 Tim. 4:18 and Heb. 13:5-6? Glorious promises – never forget that the Lord has given them to you!
  • He has provided the means whereby we may live lives of usefulness (2 Peter 1:8). How sad to have lived an unproductive life when God meant us to be fruitful! See John 15:5, 8, 16, and never forget that the Lord intends you to be a fruitful Christian!
  1. In 2 Peter 1:12 we are exhorted to remember who the Lord is, and who has done so much for us. What are we to remember about the Lord Himself?
  • He is the One who came out of the glory of heaven to do His Father’s will (2 Peter 1:17). Compare 2:5-8. The cross was the purpose of His coming. In eternity past He vowed Hebrews 10:7; and before Calvary He said John 4:34. He came from heaven to earth for us – for you!
  • He is the One who is truly the Son of God, in whom the Godhead is perfectly enshrined and expressed (2 Peter 1:16). Peter was referring to the transfiguration of the Lord on the mountain, where he and others were “eyewitnesses of his majesty.”  They heard the words of the Father and saw the Son (Mark 9:1-10). Always remember that the Lord Jesus is the one and only Son of the Father!
  • He is the One who foretold the martyrdom of His beloved servant Peter (2 Peter 1:14). We learn that just as the Lord had a perfect plan for Peter’s life, so He has a perfect plan for the life of each of His children. Never forget this! He is the Planner – our Guide and our Guardian ( 33:13; Ps. 27:11; 37:5; Pr. 3:5-6; John 16:13). Always remember your Guide!
  • He is the One of whom the Scriptures always speak (2 Peter 1:21). The prophets spoke of Him; He is the Christ of all the Scriptures ( 5:39; Lk. 24:27; Acts 18:28). Read your Bible and ground yourself deeply in its truth; always remember how great He is!
  1. In 2 Peter 3:1-2 we are exhorted to remember the words of the prophets, the apostles and of our Lord concerning future things.
  • Conclusion: Remember: our future is secure in Christ. Is yours?