By Brooke Holt
“And we have the prophetic word more fully confirmed, to which you will do well to pay attention as to a lamp shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts, knowing this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture comes from someone’s own interpretation. For no prophecy was ever produced by the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit.” 2 Peter 1:19-21
As one who loves to study the Bible, to read commentaries and books on Christian living, and who has attended seminary, I often consider what it means to have faith like a child. I never want to lose a childlike wonder or faith due to my work in ministry or my study. So, what characterizes this kind of childlike faith?
Children trust their parents; they obey their parents’ instructions; children depend upon their parents; and they are nourished by parental love. Fundamentally, children recognize their parents as the authority figures they are to trust and obey.
If these principles hold true about earthly parents, wouldn’t they be even more true for our heavenly Father? God the Father, the perfect parent, has perfect understanding of the world he created, perfect understanding of his people, and perfect knowledge of what was, is, and is to come.
In this portion of Peter’s letter, Peter reminds you of the power and authority of God’s Word. A light shining in the darkness as the ways of the world seem to keep getting darker, God’s light remains ever-present to show you the way. His love letter to you, God’s Word provides you all you need to thrive in this world. Through it, he gives instructions, commands, and many warnings; however, every word written flows from his heart of love for you.
Peter did not make up these words. He received them. The same holds true for Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John as well as Ezekiel, Jeremiah, Daniel, and Moses. They received the word of the Lord and conveyed it. The Bible is God’s perfect manual for you. God intends for you to receive it with holy fear and admiration. Believing and obeying God’s Word is the way to childlike faith.
Having served in ministry for the past 30 years, I have very deep concerns about the role of God’s Scriptures in the life of the church today. Though the Word has lost none of its power, people seem prone to ignore what they do not like; to amend what does not fit their lifestyles; and even change the way the Lord has revealed himself. This is a dangerous place to be. Either God’s Word is entirely true (and I wholeheartedly believe it is), or it is to be dismissed completely. It is not a buffet line where you get to pick and choose what you want while leaving the rest behind.
The Holy Spirit inspired God’s Word. As Peter said in our reading today, pay attention, listen, and follow the way of God’s light and Truth. Are you listening, receiving, and responding with a childlike faith or have you been led astray by the enemy, your desires, or false teachers?
What is your view of God’s revelation throughout the pages of Scripture? Who shaped this view – God, the world, or your own experiences? We would love to hear your thoughts in the comments.
Could you use some hope right now? Join Peter’s first audience—“elect exiles” undergoing persecution—and experience the apostle’s powerful call to follow Jesus in the midst of life’s challenges, knowing your Living Hope is not a distant one, but a daily, glorious, life-giving reality! This unique six-week small group Bible study, A Living Hope: A Study of 1 Peter, helps you uncover the priceless promises written specifically to the struggling and the hurting, with pastoral gentleness and bold confidence for the future. This study of 1 Peter will help you become utterly convinced that Jesus is the only sure, true, incorruptible, and permanent hope for you.
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