ImmerseMessiah NLT - Flipbook - Page 306
When it seems like Peter is wrapping up his letter with a doxology
(“All glory and power to him forever and ever! Amen.”), he continues
on with a slightly different theme. Perhaps he received additional news
about these believers before Silas (a friend who probably served as
scribe and messenger) left to deliver it.
“Dear friends,” Peter continues, “don’t be surprised at the fiery trials
you are going through, as if something strange were happening to
you.” These new believers may not have expected their faith in Jesus
to lead so directly to troubles and insults. Perhaps they were even
disappointed in God for the way things were turning out. Peter tells
them that they should actually “be very glad—for these trials make you
partners with Christ in his suffering.” This recalls Peter’s language in an
earlier part of the letter: “Christ suffered for you. He is your example,
and you must follow in his steps.” This should remind us of the message of Mark’s Gospel, most likely built from Peter’s account. There we
saw that Jesus himself pioneered the way of suffering and service and
taught his disciples that they were to follow that path as well.
With this additional treatment on suffering, Peter concludes his letter.
After repeating his doxology (“All power to him forever! Amen.”), he
offers one last word of encouragement: “My purpose in writing is to
encourage you and assure you that what you are experiencing is truly
part of God’s grace for you. Stand firm in this grace.”