We have come to the end of Peter’s first letter. He is signing off and sending greetings from all those with him.
The first thing Peter does is identify the actual scribe doing the writing for this letter. I wonder if Peter’s handwriting was a problem or if, being a fisherman, he didn’t feel confident penning such a letter. Did Silvanus need to “reorder” some of Peter’s thoughts to make them grammatically correct for the language his audience was using? Was Peter educated enough to know how to write? Paul was certainly educated enough to write yet he used scribes for most of his letters. I wonder if Paul’s vision kept him from writing. Whoever put pen to paper, we KNOW that the Holy Spirit had the final say in what was eventually sent out.
After establishing the “pen pusher” Peter established the authority behind the letter. “This is the true grace of God. Stand firm in it” (verse 12b). No matter who penned it physically, this message was from God. The Holy Spirit had some things that Peter’s audience needed to hear and Peter and company were ready and willing to assist in that task.
Because this message came from God, STAND FIRM IN IT. Peter expected the believers who received this letter to follow God’s instructions. That goes for us today too.
The next greeting Peter sends is a covert cover to protect the church. Rome is cracking down on Christians at this time and Peter feels it is wise to shield those in Rome from discovery. My bible helps tell me that the reference to Babylon refers to the spiritual center of all, which was Rome at the time, and the “she” was really the church, “the bride of Christ”, in Rome with Peter.
Peter also identifies Mark as being with him during the writing of this letter. Mark is very dear to Peter, enough so that he calls him his son. He is a spiritual son, not a biological one. Peter wasn’t the one who brought him to the Lord but he was the one who took him in when he was floundering. This is the same John Mark that Paul refused to go back into the missionary field with because he flaked during his first trip. This is also the same Mark who penned the gospel of Mark. He grew a LOT under Peter’s tutelage! Some experts even say that the gospel of Mark is Peter’s account of the life of Jesus. Interesting how Peter puts his name to this letter but does not to the gospel of Mark. I wonder if it was because he felt unworthy to do so or if Mark had other sources too for his telling of Jesus’ story. However it came about, we are grateful for it and recognize again the true author; the Holy Spirit.
Thank You Father for sharing Peter’s thoughts and Your words with me. I need all the encouragement and guidance I can get. Thank You for authenticating Peter’s words too. I don’t care how man tries to discredit the bible; I will ALWAYS believe YOU put it all together. Thank You for Your words Father. Thank You Holy Spirit for commanding the pens of men, then and now. I pray You command my computer keys with the same kind of authority. Change what needs to be changed and explain what needs clarification. Thank You for letting me be a part of Your work today. Also, keep me following Peter’s words; Your instructions.