Tuesday, January 12, 2016
“And account that the longsuffering of our Lord is salvation; even as our beloved brother Paul also according to the wisdom given unto him hath written unto you; As also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things; in which are some things hard to be understood, which they that are unlearned and unstable wrest, as they do also the other scriptures, unto their own destruction” (2 Peter 3:15,16 KJV).
Although there is so much confusion about it, can we really understand and enjoy the Bible?
Let us consider the second point from today’s Scripture: “even as our beloved brother Paul also according to the wisdom given unto him hath written unto you; As also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things.” Some people in “Christianity” today—even preachers!—absolutely hate the Apostle Paul. I have received emails from “Christian” people disparaging Paul, individuals calling him every nasty name but the “four-letter ones.” (Doubtless their “‘Jesus-loving,’ scholarship-worshipping, ‘spiritual’ leader” taught them these reckless slanders.)
The Holy Spirit, knowing people were criticizing Paul (2,000 years ago), moved the Apostle Peter to pen “our beloved brother Paul.” Paul was not a charlatan or infidel. Peter acknowledged Paul as a brother in Jesus Christ. Moreover, he called Paul “beloved.” Notice the amity and love Peter had toward Paul. After all, they both were saved by the same Jesus Christ and led by the same Holy Spirit.
Yet, Peter acknowledged Paul had “wisdom given unto him.” Interestingly, Peter singled out Paul. Peter never claimed to have been given that wisdom—or John, James, Matthew, Jude, et cetera. In Peter’s mind, no one but Paul had that “wisdom.” Paul wrote in Ephesians 3:2,3: “…the dispensation of the grace of God which is given me to you-ward: How that by revelation he made known unto me the mystery….” Paul confirms in Galatians 2:1,2: “Then fourteen years after I went up again to Jerusalem with Barnabas, and took Titus with me also. And I went up by revelation, and communicated unto them that gospel which I preach among the Gentiles….” Paul met with Peter, James, and John, and he shared with them the special Gospel message God had given to him to preach amongst the Gentiles!