Daniel 4:1-37, 2 Peter 1:1-21, Psalms 119:97-112, Proverbs 28:17-18
Today is the 27th day of November. Welcome to the Daily Audio Bible. I’m Brian and it is a pleasure to be here with you as we enjoy these final days of this 11th month together. So, we’ve been reading from the Contemporary English Version this week, which is, of course, what we’ll continue to do throughout the rest of this week, but when we get to the New Testament today we will be beginning a new book, a new letter, known as second Peter and we’ll talk about that when we get there, but first, we are in the book of Daniel, chapter 4 verses 1 through 37 today.
Introduction to 2 Peter:
Okay. So, like we said at the beginning, we are beginning another letter and things are just going to speed up as we continue to move to the old and new Testaments. There’ll be a season in December where it’s like we’re beginning a new book every day, but the letter that we’re beginning today is thought to be the final writing of the apostle Peter. Now, it’s only fair to at least point out that the authenticity of this letter has been questioned and it’s not like a new thing, like somebody trying to dismantle the Bible or something like that. This goes all the way back into antiquity. And, so, by authenticity, we don’t mean that the letter exists or that it was inspired by God, or that it belongs in the Bible, but mean that the author matches the name of the letter, right? So, that the author was the apostle Peter. Acceptance of this is something that happened over time and over time the letter was fully considered Scripture, but by the fourth century. So, in more modern times of scholarship it’s the stylistic differences that have been observed between first and second Peter. So, those who would defend Peter’s authorship would say that he, you know, was probably illiterate and whatever he could write, maybe couldn’t write like a whole letter. And, so, he would dictate to a secretary or someone helping him what he wanted to say. And, so, the differences between first and second Peter would be because he dictated the text to a different person. So, kind of the net /net of all of this is that, all in all, there are compelling reasons to consider this letter as we do the book of Hebrews, right? So, the author is unknown. But there are equally compelling reasons to consider the author to be the apostle Peter as named in the letter. So, if the apostle Peter wrote a second Peter, it would’ve probably been in the late 60s AD and he was martyred shortly thereafter. It’s church tradition that holds that Peter was crucified upside down at his own request during his death, during his execution even though the Bible doesn’t explicitly verify this. And Peter doesn’t explicitly say to whom he’s writing in this second letter of Peter. He says he’s writing to you who share the same precious faith we have. So, we assumed that he was writing to the same people that he’d previously written to because he refers to the first letter in this second letter, but if he’s writing to you who share the same precious faith we have then, I mean, then he’s writing to us too…like…that criteria matches a lot of people. So, you know, whereas the point of first Peter was to bolster and give instructions to believers about how to ensure the pressures that are coming against them. Second Peter’s point is about false teachings and evil behavior from within the church. And we should probably be giving Second Peter just as much gravity as we did Second Timothy knowing that Second Timothy was the final words of the apostle Paul. You know, we gave it the gravity that it was due, and we should do the same with Second Peter knowing that…well…knowing that Peter knew he was about to die. And he says as much in the letter. And, so, this is a man who walked with Jesus along the Sea of Galilee, right? This is a man who saw Jesus perform miracles. This is somebody who laughed out loud and heard Jesus laughing out loud. This is a person who cried with Jesus, lived with Him, ate his last supper with Hi, and then denied Him and watched Him die, but this is also a man who saw Jesus raised to life again. This is the man who preached the first sermon after the coming of the Holy Spirit, right, with the tongues of fire at Pentecost, where 3000 people chose to follow Jesus right at the origination of the church, that these may be the final living words of the apostle Peter. And, so, they should carry weight in our lives. And we’ll see that he chose to use those final words as a means of encouragement, encouragement to maturity, and to combat false teaching, and remind us of the certainty that Jesus will come for us. And, so, with that being said, we begin today, Second Peter chapter 1.
Father, we thank you for your word. And as we acknowledged just a little bit ago, things do speed up. Certainly, they speed up in time because of the holiday season that we are in. And they speed up in the Scriptures as we move closer and closer into the minor prophets and in some of the shorter books in the New Testament, some of the shorter letters. And, so, it’s as if the Bible speeds up even as our lives speed up. And it’s an important time that we put into practice all that we’ve learned all year long about the fact that our intimacy with you is something from within and not from without. And we acknowledge that everything from without is being disrupted in this season. And, so, it’s easy for us to lose touch with ourselves, with our hearts, with you because of all the festivities and all of the activity. So, come Holy Spirit we pray as we move through these final days of this 11th month of the year. Lead us into all truth we ask in Your precious name. Amen.
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And, yeah, we’ve been talking about the Daily Audio Bible Christmas Box for a few days. And those are those are flying out. So, if you haven’t had a chance to look into it yet, this is this is an opportunity where we try to gather as high an impact of resources that we have and bundle them together so that that its as cost-effective as this possible. So, these resources cannot only get into your life but into the lives of those that you choose to give them to. And this is good Box. There’s the Promise Land two DVD set - over four hours of content that allows you to immerse yourself in the land of the Bible and kind of fly in and look around at the places that we’ve been visiting all year. So, that’s in the Box. Then, my books, Reframe and Sneezing Jesus, two books that really go together in terms of spiritual transformation and just…you know…just trying to unpack some of the jargon of our faith. Like, what do we mean when we say we’re in a relationship with God? And what is it that Jesus coming to earth and dying for our sins is supposed…what is that supposed to do for our humanity? We know that’s supposed to do for our eternity but what is that supposed to do now? These things are explored in these books and they’re my best shot. I mean, there my best shot of wrestling and wrestling and wrestling with my own faith. And, so, those are in the Box. My friend, Robert, has written the book named “Going”…or titled, Going Solo. And I wrote the forward to that book. And its it’s the journey of a single parent. And I wanted it in the Box this year for a couple reasons. One, because it’s an honest look at this topic. It’s not just full of, you know, trite little promise kinds of pat on the back sort of things, you know, little encouragements. It’s like down in the mud. It’s like down in what it’s really like and how to find hope in all of that, that season that can be very lonely when you’re going solo but you have kids that are depending on you. So, me just saying that…I just…I mean…there are tens of thousands of you who know exactly what I’m talking about because you’re walking that road. But I don’t believe there’s anybody that doesn’t have someone in their lives walking down a path. And this is a great resource because it does not pander at all. Like, it’s an honest friend. So, that’s in the Christmas Box. The annual Daily Audio Bible Christmas bulb with our word, “Hope”, on it for the year 2018 is in the Box. A pack of the Daily Audio Bible Christmas cards for this year, those also contain our word, “Hope” on the front of them and they’re beautiful, beautiful this year. So, a pack of 20 of those with their matching envelopes, those are in the Box. And our own, one-of-a-kind, Black Wing pencils that are labeled with Daily Audio Bible on the side. We can’t even sell them. We just approached Black Wing to see if we could get them and made they were gracious enough to make them, and we can put one in the box but we can’t sell them, you know, like in boxes of 12 like Black Wings go, but they’re in the Box or it’s in the Box as well. And something else, a surprise from our vault, one additional resource. We have a number of resources but some of them we don’t have enough in stock to give everybody. So, we decided let’s use these, let’s get these into the hands of people. And, so, a surprise item is well. So, you can find all of this at dailyaudiobible.com in the Shop, in the in the Christmas section. And, so, check it out. You also buy the cards, just a pack of 20 cards and envelopes, like if you need more cards. I mean we don't…I mean we make these and we go to the labor of it every year because its part of our community experience, but these resources…like…we’re not making them to make money off of you. So, you can get 20 cards for five bucks. And I don't…I mean…that's…I think that’s as good as it would get anywhere. We’ve made them as resources for the community so, that you can invite your friends and family along on the journey with you next year if you want. So, check all that out at dailyaudiobible.com.
Also, don’t forget the family Christmas CD, our music that I created a couple of years ago. I love Christmas music. I always have my whole life. And before I was doing this my life was the music industry as a record producer. So, that’s something that I have always loved and have had to give up in some ways to do ministry, but still love to create. And I created this a couple of years ago and just a very, very contemplative, orchestrated, peaceful Carols. And, so, you can get that at dailyaudiobible.com as well or he know if you like iTunes or what wherever, wherever you get your downloaded digital music, just look up Family Christmas, look up my name and you can stream it all you want, but make it a part of the Christmas journey, especially as we approach the Advent season and the season to contemplate the mystery and the overwhelming display of love, that God would come in person to rescue us. I think that the family Christmas album sets that tone well. So, make that a part of your season as a part of the community experience that we share here.
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And that’s it for today. I’m Brian I love you and I’ll be waiting for you here tomorrow.