2 Peter 3:18

"To Him be the glory, both now and to the day of eternity"

2_Peter_3_18

POSTED 16 JUNE, 2017

reproduced from Salvation on the Line: The Nature of Yeshua and His Divinity

“but grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Yeshua the Messiah. To Him be the glory, both now and to the day of eternity. Amen.”

The closing doxology of the Epistle of 2 Peter, certainly asks readers of Peter’s letter some significant questions. Doxologies are hardly uncommon to the Holy Scriptures, as Paul glorifies the Lord in Romans 11:36: “For from Him and through Him and to Him are all things. To Him be the glory forever. Amen.” It is most common in doxologies in the Apostolic Writings, to see glory offered to the One God of Israel, through Yeshua the Messiah (Romans 7:25; 16:27; Ephesians 3:21; 1 Peter 4:11; Jude 25).[1] 1 Peter 4:11 preceding, has God proper in view:

“Whoever speaks, is to do so as one who is speaking the utterances of God; whoever serves is to do so as one who is serving by the strength which God supplies; so that in all things God may be glorified through Yeshua the Messiah, to whom belongs the glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen.”

1 Peter 4:11 states how en pasin doxazētai ho Theos dia Iēsou Christou, “in all things may be glorified – God through Jesus Christ” (Brown and Comfort).[2] Here, God the Father is glorified by means of Yeshua the Son. In 2 Peter 3:18 following, however, Peter exclaims tou Kuriou hēmōn kai sōtēros Iēsou Christou. autō hē doxa, “of the Lord of us and Savior, Jesus Christ. To him [be] the glory” (Brown and Comfort),[3] with no doubt as to the fact that it is Yeshua the Messiah who is being extolled. The very glory that Peter ascribes to God the Father (1 Peter 4:11), is also ascribed to Yeshua the Son (2 Peter 3:18). The only way that the Apostle Peter, as a monotheistic Jew, could have come to such a conclusion, would be to see Yeshua integrated into the Divine Identity of a plural Elohim Godhead. Those who hold to a high Christology properly direct how ascribing the glory that is due of the One God of Israel, also given to Yeshua the Messiah, is acceptable only if Yeshua is God.

It is worthwhile to catalogue the thoughts of a number of commentators on 2 Peter 3:18, who likewise recognize the presence of a high Christology in the doxology offered:

  • Michael Green: “In this incidental phrase we have the highest possible Christology. For glory belongs to God (Rom. 11:36; Jude 25). But Peter had learnt that all men should honour the Son even as they honour the Father (see Jn. 5:23).”[4]
  • Richard J. Bauckham: “The concluding doxology addressed to Christ corresponds to the high Christology of 1:1 (‘our God and Savior Jesus Christ’), and shows the importance which the Christian attitude of praise and worship toward Christ had for the recognition of his divine status.”[5]
  • Douglas J. Moo: “Normally glory is ascribed to God; only here, in 2 Timothy 4:18, and in Revelation 1:5-6 do we find doxologies directed to Christ—although we do find a ‘blessing’ of Christ, as God, in Romans 9:5. But this certainly fits the high view of Jesus Christ that Peter presents from the very beginning of his letter (see esp. 1:1).”[6]
  • Ben Witherington III: “This doxology, unlike many in the New Testament (see only 2 Tim 4:18; cf. Rev 1:5-6), is to Christ, which confirms what we have already seen from 1 Peter 1: our author believes that Christ is divine or part of the Godhead and thus worthy of worship and praise, since only God should be praised in this way. Indeed he is the Lord and Savior of all humankind.”[7]

NOTES

[1] Cf. Davids, 2 Peter, pp 312-315 for a chart evaluating various doxologies.

[2] Brown and Comfort, 817.

[3] Ibid., 828.

[4] Green, 2 Peter, 164.

[5] Bauckham, 2 Peter, 338.

[6] Moo, 2 Peter, pp 214-215.

[7] Witherington, 1&2 Peter, 390.

About J.K. McKee 633 Articles
J.K. McKee (B.A., University of Oklahoma; M.A., Asbury Theological Seminary) is the editor of Messianic Apologetics (www.messianicapologetics.net), a division of Outreach Israel Ministries (www.outreachisrael.net). He is a 2009 recipient of the Zondervan Biblical Languages Award for Greek. He is author of numerous books and commentaries, dealing with a wide range of topics that are important for today’s Messianic Believers.

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