One of the key themes in 2 Peter is going to be the knowledge of God. In the few weeks we’ll be studying this passage we’ll see how the knowledge of God is more than head-knowledge. Though our knowledge starts with the data of God, who he is, how we can know he is real, and what he has revealed to us about himself, the real knowledge of God comes when we go from knowing ‘about’ God to actually knowing Him. To know him means to be in a relationship with him that is based on him and what he has done for us, through Jesus! Peter’s use of the word knowledge is not just the data of God. It’s knowing God intimately. Before you think this is just a ‘touchy-feely’ kind of sentiment, listen to the hard words that Paul gives us in Philippians 3:8-10
“I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have suffered the loss of all things and count them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which comes through faith in Christ, the righteousness from God that depends on faith – that I may know him and the power of his resurrection, and may share his sufferings, becoming like him in his death”
What does this passage say about how to know God? There is nothing easy about this. What this means is that Paul would know Christ as he shared in the sufferings of Jesus. You and I will suffer. Life involves brokenness and hurt, unfair treatment, disasters of nature and sin-induced trauma. It can and will get difficult. But it’s through this difficult times that a follower of Jesus gets to know God in a whole new way. A way that brings glory to God!
If you or someone you know is going through a difficult time of suffering right now, pray that God would make himself ‘known’ during this hard time. In his grace, God reaches out to us in our sufferings and we know his peace and presence in a whole new intimate way.