Lessons 46—Peace to You All
Scripture: 1 Peter 5:12-14
Lesson Goal: To better understand Peter’s final words as he closes this letter.
Introduction: In today’s Scripture, we find Peter’s final greeting as he closes his letter with a benediction of peace. Peter understood the truth of peace, even in the midst of the fiery trial. From the beginning of his writing to his closing remarks, he speaks of the wonderful fact of “God’s peace.”
(Verse 12) “Silvanus” another name for Silas
Silas served as Peter’s amanuensis or “secretary.” He wrote and recorded the apostle’s words. For a better understanding of this role, just think of Judy, our sister in the office. I write these lessons (Peter most likely dictated), then Judy helps me with all the points of grammar and style. Finally, Amy Jennings, our resident English expert, does the final proof. Judy would be my amanuensis. As Peter comes to the close of his letter, he reaffirms the truth and exhortations found in this writing, and now he finishes with personal words of greeting. He begins with Silas, a true follower of Jesus Christ, a close friend and companion, and a dear brother in the faith. Peter acknowledges the loyalty and contribution of Silas and gives him a great honor and tremendous compliment when he calls him “our faithful brother.”
This Silas is most likely the same man who served alongside Paul. To learn more of Silas, please read Acts 15:27, 15:32, 15:40, 16:19-40, 17:14, 18:5 and 2 Corinthians 1:19.
(Verse 12b) The true believer holds to the truth found in an absolute trustworthy God; in this truth, we stand firm in God’s grace.
Babylon—Many Jewish believers lived in Babylon. See Galatians 2:8.
“Mark my son”
This is John Mark, the writer of the second book of the New Testament. Peter had a close friendship with him and his family and now sees himself as Mark’s spiritual father. He loved Mark dearly and possibly identified with his failures as no one else could. Mark had failed on his first missionary journey with Paul, but later became a missionary under the tutelage of Barnabas. Later in life, he and Paul reconciled their differences, and he is recognized by Paul as a true minister (Please see 2 Timothy 4:11). Now we find Mark serving alongside Peter; in fact, Peter became a primary source for Mark’s Gospel. Peter and Mark shared a common experience of failure and restoration. Believers today can be encouraged by their lives and testimonies. Both men failed, but through the power of God were restored and used mightily for God.
➢ What does the following mean phrase mean to you? “Failure doesn’t have to be final.”
(Please answer prayerfully)
(Verse 14) “Greet one another with a holy kiss.”
This was a common greeting of that day and culture. Let it be noted that this was a kiss on the cheek, men-to-men and women-to-women. In our culture, a firm handshake and hug express Peter’s thought. “No matter how customs and cultures change, the form of greeting [the love] stays the same” (Phillips).
(Verse 14b) “Peace to you all who are in Christ Jesus, Amen.”
Peter began his writing with “peace” and he closes it with “peace.” Even in the midst of the most fiery trials, there is a wonderful “peace.” This peace comes only from God.
➢ Why was it so important for Peter’s readers to understand this “peace”?
➢ Would you please close this study of 1 Peter by genuinely and prayerfully writing your own personal story of God’s peace to you in the midst of your own fiery trial?
To you who have endured these forty-six lessons, I truly thank you.
Peace to you all!