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THE FIRST EPISTLE GENERAL OF PETER - Chapter 5 - Verse 12

Verse 12. By Silvanus. Or Silas. See Barnes "2 Co 1:19"; See Barnes "1 Th 1:1".

He was the intimate friend and companion of Paul, and had laboured much with him in the regions where the churches were situated to which this epistle was addressed. In what manner he became acquainted with Peter, or why he was now with him in Babylon, is unknown.

A faithful brother unto you, as I suppose. The expression "as I suppose"—wv logizomai,—does not imply that there was any doubt on the mind of the apostle, but indicates rather a firm persuasion that what he said was true. Thus, Ro 8:18, "For I reckon (logizomai) that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared," etc. That is, I am fully persuaded of it; I have no doubt of it. Peter evidently had no doubt on this point, but he probably could not speak from any personal knowledge. He had not been with them when Silas was, and perhaps not at all; for they may have been "strangers" to him personally- for the word "strangers," in 1 Pe 1:1, may imply that he had no personal acquaintance with them. Silas, however, had been much with them, (comp. Ac 15:17-31,) and Peter had no doubt that he had shown himself to be "a faithful brother" to them. An epistle conveyed by his hands could not but be welcome. It should be observed, however, that the expression "I suppose" has been differently interpreted by some. Wetstein understands it as meaning, "Not that he supposed Silvanus to be a faithful brother, for who, says he, could doubt that? but that he had written as he understood matters, having carefully considered the subject, and as he regarded things to be true;" and refers for illustration to Ro 8:18; Php 4:8; Heb 11:9.

Grotius understands it as meaning, "If I remember right;" and supposes that the idea is, that he shows his affection for them by saying that this was not the first time that he had written to them, but that he had written before briefly, and sent the letter, as well as he could remember, by Silvanus. But there is no evidence that he had written to them before, and the common interpretation is undoubtedly to be preferred.

Exhorting. No small part of the epistle is taken up with exhortations.

And testifying. Bearing witness. The main design of the office of the apostles was to bear witness to the truth, (See Barnes "1 Co 9:1";) and Peter in this epistle discharged that part of the functions of his office towards the scattered Christians of Asia Minor.

That this is the true grace of God wherein ye stand. That the religion in which you stand, or which you now hold, is that which is identified with the grace or favour of God. Christianity, not Judaism, or Paganism, was the true religion. To show this, and bear continual witness to it, was the leading design of the apostolic office.

{g} "Silvanus" 2 Co 1:19 {*} "suppose" "judge" {h} "ye stand" 1 Co 15:1

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