2 Peter i.

Notes & Commentary:

Ver. 1. In the justice (or by the justice) of our God and Saviour, Jesus Christ. As justice and sanctification are equally attributed to God and to Jesus Christ, it shews that the Son was equally and the same God with the Father. (Witham)

Ver. 3. Glory and virtue.[1] By the Greek text, virtue is not here the same as power, as commonly in other places, but signifies God’s goodness, mercy, and clemency. (Witham)

Ver. 4. Partakers of the divine nature. Divine grace infused into our souls, is said to be a partaking in the divine nature by an union with the spirit of God, whereby men are made his adoptive children, heirs of heaven, &c. (Witham)

Ver. 5. Join with your faith, virtue: think not that faith alone will save you without the practice of virtues and good works. By abstinence or temperance, is understood that virtue which helps to moderate the inordinate love of sensual pleasures, and to govern all disorderly passions and affections. (Witham)

Ver. 9. Groping,[2] like one that is blind. The Greek may signify one who hath his eyes shut, or that is like a blind mole. (Witham)

Ver. 10. By good works you may make sure, &c. without diving into the hidden mysteries of predestination, &c. — You shall not sin at any time. These words evidently suppose, that the graces and assistances of God will not be wanting; for it would be in vain to command, unless a man had both free will and capacity to perform. But, as it follows, these helps shall be abundantly ministered to you. (Witham)

Ver. 12. I will begin.[3] That is, by the Greek, I will take care. (Witham)

Ver. 13. As long as I am in this tabernacle: to wit, of the body, in this mortal life. (Witham)

Ver. 14. The laying aside,[4] or dissolution; i.e. my death is at hand. (Witham)

Ver. 15. That you frequently have after my decease,[5] &c. Some expounded these words to signify: I will have you frequently in my thoughts, and remember you, praying for you after my death. But this does not seem the true and literal sense, nor do we need such arguments to prove that the saints pray for us. (Witham)

Ver. 16. We have not by following artificial fables. Literally, learned fables,[6] invented to promote our doctrine. We, I with others, were eye-witnesses of his glory on Mount Thabor. [Matthew xvii. 2.] (Witham)

Ver. 19. And we have the surer word of prophecy, or to make our testimonies and preaching of Christ more firm. The revelations of God made to the prophets, and contained in the holy Scriptures, give us of all others the greatest assurance. Though the mysteries in themselves remain obscure and incomprehensible, the motive of our belief is divine authority. (Witham) — If our testimony be suspicious, we have what you will certainly allow, the testimony of the prophets: attend then to the prophets as to a lamp that illumines a dark place, till the bright day of a more lively faith begins to illumine you, and the day-star arises in your heart: till this faith, which is like the day-star, give you a perfect knowledge of Jesus Christ. It is by the divine oracles you will acquire this knowledge, provided you peruse them with proper dispositions.

Ver. 20. No prophecy of the scripture is made by private interpretation; or, as the Protestants translate it from the Greek, is of any private interpretation, i.e. is not to be expounded by any one’s private judgment or private spirit. (Witham) — The Scriptures cannot be properly expounded by private spirit or fancy, but by the same spirit wherewith they were written, which is resident in the Church.

Ver. 21. For prophecy came not by the will of man at any time. This is to shew that they are not to be expounded by any one’s private judgment, because every part of the holy Scriptures is delivered to us by the divine spirit of God, wherewith the men were inspired who wrote them; therefore they are not to be interpreted but by the spirit of God, which he left, and promised to his Church to guide her in all truth to the end of the world. Our adversaries may perhaps tell us, that we also interpret prophecies and Scriptures; we do so; but we do it always with a submission to the judgment of the Church, they without it. (Witham)


[1] Ver. 3. Et virtute, kai aretes.

[2] Ver. 9. Manu tentans, muopazon.

[3] Ver. 12. Incipiam, ouk ameleso, non omittam, non negligam, &c.

[4] Ver. 14. Depositio, e apothesis.

[5] Ver. 15. Dabo operam et frequenter habere vos, post obitum meum, ut horum memoriam faciatis. umas….ten touton mnemen poieisthai.

[6] Ver. 16. Non doctas fabulas, ou sesopismenois muthois. Some copies had indoctas, on which account the Rheims Testament issued before the corrections of Pope Sixtus V and Pope Clemens VIII has unlearned.

Bible Text & Cross-references:

He exhorts them to join all other virtues with their faith: in order to secure their salvation.

1 Simon Peter, a servant and an apostle of Jesus Christ, to them who have obtained equal faith with us, in the justice of our God and Saviour Jesus Christ.

2 May grace and peace abound to you in the knowledge of God, and of Christ Jesus, our Lord.

3 According as all things of his divine power, which appertain to life and piety, are given to us, through the knowledge of him who hath called us by his own proper glory and virtue,

4 By whom he hath given us very great and precious promises: that by these you may be made partakers of the divine nature: flying the corruption of that concupiscence which is in the world.

5 And you, giving all diligence, join with your faith, virtue, and with virtue, knowledge,

6 And with knowledge, abstinence, and with abstinence, patience, with patience, piety,

7 And with piety, brotherly love, and with brotherly love, charity.

8 For if these things be with you, and abound, they will make you to be neither empty, nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.

9 For he that hath not these things with him, is blind, and groping, forgetting his being purged from his old sins.

10 Wherefore, brethren, labour the more, that by good works you may make sure your vocation and election: for doing these things, you shall not sin at any time.

11 For so an entrance shall be ministered to you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.

12 For which cause I will begin to put you always in remembrance of these things: though indeed you know them, and are confirmed in the present truth.

13 But I think it just as long as I am in this tabernacle, to stir you up by reminding you:

14 Being assured that the laying aside of this my tabernacle is at hand, even according as our Lord Jesus Christ hath *signified to me.

15 And I will endeavour, that you frequently have after my decease, whereby you may keep a memory of these things.

16 *For we have not by following artificial fables, made known to you the power, and presence of our Lord Jesus Christ; but we were eye-witnesses of his majesty.

17 For he received from God the Father honour and glory; this voice coming down to him from the excellent glory: *This is my beloved Son, in whom I am pleased; hear ye him.

18 And this voice we heard brought from heaven, when we were with him in the holy mount.

19 And we have the surer word of prophecy: to which you do well to attend, as to a light shining in a dark place until the day dawn, and the morning star rise in your hearts:

20 *Understanding this first, that no prophecy of the Scripture is made by private interpretation.

21 For prophecy came not by the will of man at any time; but the holy men of God spoke, inspired by the Holy Ghost.



14: John xxi. 19.

16: 1 Corinthians i. 17.

17: Matthew xvii. 5.

20: 2 Timothy iii. 16.