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THE SECOND EPISTLE GENERAL OF PETER - Chapter 1 - Verse 3

Verse 3. According as his divine power hath given unto us. All the effects of the gospel on the human heart are, in the Scriptures, traced to the power of God. See Barnes "Ro 1:16".

There are no moral means which have ever been used that have such power as the gospel; none through which God has done so much in changing the character and affecting the destiny of man.

All things that pertain unto life and godliness. The reference here in the word life is undoubtedly to the life of religion; the life of the soul imparted by the gospel. The word godliness is synonymous with piety. The phrase "according as" (wv) seems to be connected with the sentence in 2 Pe 1:5, "Forasmuch as he has conferred on us these privileges and promises connected with life and godliness, we are bound, in order to obtain all that is implied in these things, to give all diligence to add to our faith, knowledge," etc.

Through the knowledge of him. By a proper acquaintance with him, or by the right kind of knowledge of him. See Barnes "Joh 17:3".

 

That hath called to glory and virtue. Margin, by. Greek, "through glory," etc. Doddridge supposes that it means that he has done this "by the strengthening virtue and energy of his spirit." Rosenmuller renders it, "by glorious benignity." Dr. Robinson (Lex.) renders it, "through a glorious display of his efficiency." The objection which any one feels to this rendering arises solely from the word virtue, from the fact that we are not accustomed to apply that word to God. But the original word (areth) is not as limited in its signification as the English word is, but is rather a word which denotes a good quality or excellence of any kind. In the ancient classics it is used to denote manliness, vigour, courage, valour, fortitude; and the word would rather denote energy or power of some kind, than what we commonly understand by virtue, and would be, therefore, properly applied to the energy or efficiency which God has displayed in the work of our salvation. Indeed, when applied to moral excellence at all, as it is in 1 Pe 1:5 of this chapter, and often elsewhere, it is perhaps with a reference to the energy, boldness, rigour, or courage which is evinced in overcoming our evil propensities, and resisting allurements and temptations. According to this interpretation, the passage teaches that it is by a glorious Divine efficiency that we are called into the kingdom of God.

{c} "all things" Ps 84:11; 1 Ti 4:8 {*} "unto" "belong to" {3} "to glory" "by" {d} "virtue" 2 Ti 1:9

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