1 and 2 Peter
“Rejoice with Joy Unspeakable and Full of Glory”
Shortly after His Resurrection, the Savior made a prophecy that must have been troubling to Peter. He said that when Peter was old, he would be carried “whither [he] wouldest not … , signifying by what death he should glorify God” (John 21:18–19). When Peter wrote his epistles, he knew that this prophesied martyrdom was near: “Shortly I must put off this my tabernacle, even as our Lord Jesus Christ hath shewed me” (2 Peter 1:14). Unfortunately, such severe persecution was common for the Saints in Roman provinces, to whom Peter was writing (see 1 Peter 1:1). And yet his words were not filled with fear or pessimism. Instead, he taught the Saints to “greatly rejoice,” even though they were “in heaviness through manifold temptations.” He counseled them to remember that “the trial of [their] faith” would lead to “praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ” and to “the salvation of [their] souls” (1 Peter 1:6–7, 9). Peter’s faith must have been comforting to those early Saints, as it is encouraging to Saints today, who are also “partakers of Christ’s sufferings; that, when his glory shall be revealed, [we] may be glad also with exceeding joy” (1 Peter 4:13).