Editorial: Learning With Peter To “Stand Firm In God’s Grace” -- By: Stephen J. Wellum

Journal: Southern Baptist Journal of Theology
Volume: SBJT 21:3 (Fall 2017)
Article: Editorial: Learning With Peter To “Stand Firm In God’s Grace”
Author: Stephen J. Wellum

Editorial: Learning With Peter To “Stand Firm In God’s Grace”

Stephen J. Wellum

Stephen J. Wellum is Professor of Christian Theology at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary and editor of Southern Baptist Journal of Theology. He received his PhD from Trinity Evangelical Divinity School, and he is the author of numerous essays and articles and the co-author with Peter Gentry of Kingdom through Covenant (Crossway, 2012) and God’s Kingdom through God’s Covenants: A Concise Biblical Theology (Crossway, 2015), and the co-editor of Building on the Foundations of Evangelical Theology (Crossway, 2015 with Gregg Allison), and Progressive Covenantalism (B&H, 2016 with Brent Parker), and author of God the Son Incarnate: The Doctrine of the Person of Christ (Crossway, 2016) and Christ Alone—The Uniqueness of Jesus as Savior (Zondervan, 2017).

Simon Peter is perhaps one of the most attractive of all the people and writers of the NT. He is a predominate individual in the Gospels and the early part of Acts, as an apostle of our Lord Jesus Christ. Like his brother Andrew, Simon was a fisherman before he was called to follow Christ. Peter came from Bethsaida, on the northern shore of the Sea of Galilee (John 1:44), but he made his home in Capernaum (Mark 1:21, 29), where he lived with his wife, his mother-in-law, and Andrew (Mark 1:29-30). From the Gospels we know of his temperament as strong-willed and quick to express his thoughts and emotions (see John 13:6-9; Matt 26:33). He clearly is the leader of the apostolic circle which is evidenced by the fact that he is listed first in every list of apostles and he functions as the spokesman for the apostles (see Matt 16:15ff). It is not accidental that Jesus nicknamed him “The Rock,” a pun

on his name and reflective of his personality, his leadership skills, and his deep love for Christ.

Peter, as a Galilean, was probably caught up with revolutionary Messianic expectation. Similar to others in the first century, faithful Israelites longed to see the OT prophecies of God’s rule and reign come to this world in salvation and judgment. They longed to see a reversal of Israel’s fortunes and God’s kingdom break into this world through the coming of the Messianic, Davidic king. Given that Peter shared these same hopes and longings, it is not surprising that ...

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