I read 1 John today, too. I read 2 Peter because I don't know it too well. Maybe once before, really closely. But 1 John is such a familiar comfort to me. It's the greatest circular argument ever! Would you expect any less from the Spirit of God? I didn't think so. A wise man told me that if you read 1 John and you still think you're a Christian, then you are. You're darn skippy you are.
It's perseverance time again! This time, it's all about 2 Peter. He reminds us in this second letter that any notion we have of "eternal security" should be based on the grace of God. His grace, as opposed to a fatalistic attachment to the biblical doctrine of election. There are real battles to be won in our lives by God's grace. Because of election, we take hold of grace, taking the warnings seriously. We do not sit idly by, waiting for a glorification we have no part in. No one should ever quote Philippians 2:12 or 2:13 separately. They go together. That's a bold thing to say, but I'm serious. I can tell if someone is a zealot Calvinist, or a fearful Arminian by which one of those verses they quote. It's a pet peeve. Confessions of a Calvinist annoyed by Calvinists (some of them).
What did I learn this week? That no person should spend too much time dwelling on failure and sin. We are far worse than we think, and yet I have been taught that for every look we take at our sin, we should take ten looks at Christ. Indeed, that notion is founded solidly on Scripture: "Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God." (Hebrews 12:1-2, NIV)