Hopefully, you know a little bit about Peter from the gospels. He was kind of ahead of the curve when it came to bragging and arguing about who was the greatest with the other disciples. Obviously, he didn’t get what Christ was about in the beginning, but we’re all a work in progress.

Christ eventually made Peter into this excellent apostle and man of God. Peter preached the first sermon of the Christian era. Did you know that God anointed him so much that when he preached thousands came to faith during that first sermon? When you think about it, he was a very unlikely person to even be preaching in the first place. If less than two months before, you had denied the Lord three times, said you didn’t know him and even cursed the third time, would anyone pick you to be the first preacher of the new Christian era? Probably not.

God who is rich in mercy, though, chose Peter and chose each one of us. God delights in showing mercy. Peter was the trophy of his grace, and boy did he know it. He wrote to the early church, “May grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord” (2 Peter 1:2, ESV).

Notice that this grace and peace comes through knowing, walking with and becoming more intimate with God and Jesus Christ. We don’t just want head knowledge about God. The people who knew scripture best in Jesus’ day were the ones who crucified him. We need heart knowledge of God. We’re called to fellowship with the Lord. As we do, there’s more grace and peace available for us.

Notice that this opening to Peter’s letter is more like a prayer. It’s not who he is yet. It’s not who’s writing to yet either. It’s a greeting that has a prayer for the future built into it. It’s a prayer we can all say. “Oh Lord, help us to know you better and better this year. As we do that, give us grace and peace in abundance!” As we open our Bibles, let’s pray, “Lord, I don’t want to just understand you intellectually. Reveal yourself to me through these scriptures. Reveal yourself to the eyes of my heart. Give me a deeper understanding of who you really are.”