I can remember the anticipation of Christmas morning when I was a child. In my mind’s eye, I could see myself tearing into those boxes and I would imagine what those boxes held. Sometimes, I would know what was in the boxes but that didn’t make me anticipate opening my presents any less. In like manner, we know what a wonderful home God has prepared for us in heaven. We also know how miraculous it was that he saved any of us. While we praise Him and thank Him here on this earth, we are not yet completely redeemed. We still live in sinful flesh in a fallen world. As we read and study scripture, we can have the same kind of excitement and anticipation as a kid at Christmas. Peter encourages the believers that they too should remain faithful to the truths in scripture as they await full redemption in Jesus Christ.
Peter tells these believers that they would “do well to pay attention” to the word of God. The Greek word “prosecho” (4337) is translated “pay attention”. The word means to hold close to something or to keep your mind on something. It is so easy to allow our minds and focuses to drift from Christ and our relationship with Him. I know I have a job, family responsibilities, and other things that demand my time and rightly so. However, to be the kind of employee, husband, and father that I should be I need to constantly meditate on the word of God and the God of the word. I need the word to empower me to live a life that is pleasing to God.
Living a life that is pleasing is difficult because we live in a sinful world with temptations around us on all sides. I have stubbed my toe or bruised my shin on my than one occasion while I was walking through my house in the middle of the night to get something to drink or go to the restroom. That happened because it was dark. I can’t see very well anyway—put me in a dark room and I’m useless. The sin that permeates everything in this world makes this world a “dark place” to live. Max Lucado (ugh, I can’t believe I’m quoting him) made the point that the reason we see so many people hurt and hurting one another is because we’re trying to walk in the darkness without a light. Peter tells us where we can and should look for a source of spiritual light in this world. Peter says the word of God is a “lamp shining in a dark place”. God in His mercy has revealed Himself in His word and as Peter says in verse 3 this word gives us “everything [we need] pertaining to life and godliness”.
But what we have in the word of God is like a wrapped present. We read about our home in heaven. We read about our freedom from sin and temptation. We know what’s in the box under the tree, so to speak. But one day, finally, we will get to open those presents when the “lamp” gives way to the true Light as the “day dawns”. This world is not our permanent home. The darkness of this world will one day give way to the light of our Lord Jesus. When that day dawns, we will finally see what our hearts have been longing for when “the morning star arises in [our] hearts”.
What a glorious day that will be. No more sin. No more death. Praise God for our future redemption.