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A More Sure Word


   2 Peter 1:16 For we did not follow cleverly devised tales when we made known to you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but we were eyewitnesses of His majesty. 17 For when He received honor and glory from God the Father, such an utterance as this was made to Him by the Majestic Glory, “This is My beloved Son with whom I am well-pleased”— 18 and we ourselves heard this utterance made from heaven when we were with Him on the holy mountain.
   19 So we have the prophetic word made more sure, to which you do well to pay attention as to a lamp shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star arises in your hearts. 20 But know this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture is a matter of one’s own interpretation, 21 for no prophecy was ever made by an act of human will, but men moved by the Holy Spirit spoke from God.

This is a classic text expounding the reason for our confidence in the Bible as the Word of God.

While many people depend on their own experiences as a foundation for knowledge and wisdom, we have something far better on which to place our confidence. John MacArthur writes:

John MacArthurmade more sure. This translation could indicate that the eyewitness account of Christ’s majesty at the Transfiguration confirmed the Scriptures. However the Gr. word order is crucial in that it does not say that. It says, “And we have more sure the prophetic word.” That original arrangement of the sentence supports the interpretation that Peter is ranking Scripture over experience. The prophetic word (Scripture) is more complete, more permanent, and more authoritative than the experience of anyone. More specifically, the Word of God is a more reliable verification of the teachings about the person, atonement, and second coming of Christ than even the genuine first hand experiences of the apostles themselves. [The MacArthur Study Bible, underlining added]

Scripture is “more sure” because its origin is not the mind of man, but of God. It is therefore, unlike our subjective experience, objectively true.

one’s own interpretation. The Gr. word for “interpretation” has the idea of a “loosing,” as if to say no Scripture is the result of any human being privately, “untying” and “loosing” the truth. Peter’s point is not so much about how to interpret Scripture, but rather how Scripture originated, and what its source was. The false prophets untied and loosed their own ideas. But no part of God’s revelation was unveiled or revealed from a human source or out of the prophet’s unaided understanding (see v. 21). [ibid.]


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