The new birth Jesus required of Nicodemus and the Jews (John 3:1ff) was positively filled with energy. Here in Peter we learn that it thrust them into a living hope, soon to be realized. (Hope that is realized is no longer hope, Rom 8:24–25.)
Still, the refining fires promised by Malachi (Mal. 3–4) were upon them. Attitudes of hope and rejoicing are critical. The greater and deeper the persecution, the deeper the need of a clear vision of certain victory. Peter affirmed: they not only got to share the sufferings of Jesus (for the same reasons), they also were about to be sharers of His Glory.
Every prophet had seen these days, and yearned to understand what was unfolding before Peter's audience. Even the angels of heaven were craning their necks to get a glimpse of what God was doing through His Son (who had stepped away from his throne of glory to become humbly human, Phil. 2:5–8).
This is the good news God had promised through the prophets, but was being delivered through Peter and his fellows through the power of the Holy Spirit. Amen!
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