Peter’s Theology Of Discipleship To The Crucified Messiah (1 Peter 2:18-25) -- By: Michael J. Wilkins

Journal: Southern Baptist Journal of Theology
Volume: SBJT 21:3 (Fall 2017)
Article: Peter’s Theology Of Discipleship To The Crucified Messiah (1 Peter 2:18-25)
Author: Michael J. Wilkins

Peter’s Theology Of Discipleship To The Crucified Messiah (1 Peter 2:18-25)

Michael J. Wilkins

Michael J. Wilkins is Distinguished Professor of New Testament Language and Literature at Talbot School of Theology, Biola University in La Mirada, California, where he has taught since 1977. He earned his M.Div. from Talbot and his PhD from Fuller Theological Seminary. Among his publications are The Concept of Disciple in Matthew’s Gospel: As Reflected in the Use of the Term Μαθητής, Novum Testamentum Supplements 59 (E. J. Brill, 1988); Following the Master: A Biblical Theology of Discipleship (Zondervan, 1992); Matthew, NIV Application Commentary (Zondervan, 2004); First Peter: An Exegetical Commentary in the Zondervan Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament (Zondervan, forthcoming); and Biblical and Theological Studies: A Student’s Guide (co-authored with Erik Thoennes) in the Reclaiming the Christian Intellectual Tradition Series (Crossway, forthcoming).


The apostle Peter is one of the most prominent of the first disciples of Jesus in the canonical record. He was among the earliest of the disciples of Jesus (cf. John 1:35; 2:1-11; Matt 4:17-22), and quickly became the leader of the band of disciples (Matt 10:1-4), a position he held into the earliest days of the post-resurrection church (Acts 1-15). He is perhaps the most visible of the disciples whose discipleship to Jesus transitions from following Jesus around Palestine in the earthly ministry, to following a crucified and resurrected Master in the earliest days of

the post-resurrection church, to ministering to disciples of the risen Jesus in churches in the expanded Greco-Roman world (Asia Minor and Rome). Peter knows well what discipleship to Jesus entailed, and guides the early church into discipleship to Jesus in the post-resurrection age.1 In this article we will be exploring the apostle Peter’s theology of discipleship as found in 1 Peter.2

The Curious Absence of “Disciples” in 1 Peter

But first we must address an intriguing phenomenon: the words for “disciple” (noun μαθητής) and “make disciples”/“discipleship” (verb μαθητεύω) do not occur in 1 Peter. Indeed, those...

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