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1 Peter – What I Learnt

26 Dec 2018


For the last 6 weeks, I have been writing on things I’ve learned while studying 1 Peter. I learnt a lot, both from my studies and by going through the process of writing about them. I’ll summarise what I learnt here.

What I Learnt from Studying 1 Peter

Those who have read my blog posts will know that my process is not to try to summarise a chapter, but to focus tightly on a particular verse or small section and try to gain an understanding of something I’ve previously overlooked. When you read through the following list of things I’ve learnt, just remember that I’m not attempting to summarise the chapter, but to summarise what I learnt.

1 Peter 1

1 Peter 2

1 Peter 3: Part 1

1 Peter 3: Part 2

1 Peter 4

1 Peter 5

What I Learnt from Writing about 1 Peter

In addition to what I learned from my actual studies of the Bible, I also learnt about the process of writing. I’m sure there is a lot left for me to learn, but here are some things that I learnt:

  1. Don’t try to combine everything I want to say into a single post

    For the first few posts, I wrote a section at the beginning talking about the process I was using to studying the Word. This was something I enjoyed writing about. It’s also an area where I expect to grow a lot as I continue to study the Word and learn how to do it better. I think this makes for a disjointed reading experience and perhaps distracts from the primary purpose of the series. I still aim to write about the process of studying and writing, but I won’t combine it with articles about what I’ve learnt from my studies.

  2. Don’t add things just to fill out the page

    I was worried that I wouldn’t have enough to say on any given week (I’m not sure where I got this idea, having something to say is not usually an issue for me), so I added two sections that were intermediate steps along the way.

    • Interesting things. A list of the parts of the passage that I considered studying. Whatever I found interesting as I read through the passage throughout the week perhaps including a thought I had at the time. I came to the conclusion that, while the thoughts in this section made sense to me (I knew why I found something interesting, what I wanted to research, what other thoughts it triggered in my mind when I read it), they really didn’t add much to the blog and it wasn’t likely it would make sense or be enjoyable to anyone reading the blog.
    • Outline. An outline of the passage pulled from one of the commentaries I read during my studies. My original hope was to try to place the passage under study in the context of the whole book, and perhaps it did this, but I found when trying to just read a commentator’s outline, the best that could happen was I would want to read the chapter. Not only this, I’m not trying to write a commentary, I’m not trying to write a thorough treatment of the whole text, I’m just trying to share what I think God is saying to me (and perhaps to others) as I read and study the Bible, which is a purpose that an outline doesn’t really serve.
  3. The beginning parts of commentaries are there for a reason

    I have not always enjoyed the sometimes significant chunks of text at the beginning of most commentaries dealing with authorship, date, audience, and so on. And I thought I could avoid discussing these issues, but I came to the conclusion that I was missing out. When I would read in a commentary that certain scholars rejected Petrine authorship, or that 1 Peter was written to Anatolian believers who were suffering a particular kind of persecution, and so on, I found that I was missing the context required to understand what the commentators were saying, but I also found that I didn’t have an opinion of my own. I intend to devote some weeks at the beginning of my study of a book to these subjects. I’m not sure whether I’ll have a post on each (authorship, date, audience) or a single post for all three, I’ll play it by ear, see how I go.

  4. Podcasts are hard

    I originally intended to make audio recordings of my blog posts for those who don’t enjoy reading. I love reading, but I also love listening to podcasts and audio books and I have some recording equipment at home, so I thought it would be easy. It turns out that the way I wrote things wasn’t really conducive to having them read aloud. It also turns out that podcasts take a lot of time and I’m not as perfect a speaker as I had thought. I will try to write with the spoken word in mind more and to record podcasts for the next series on 2 Peter but I make no guarantees.