2 Peter: Diligence



Scripture verse (II Peter 1:5-7): “But also for this very reason, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue, to virtue knowledge, to knowledge self-control, to self-control perseverance, to perseverance godliness, to godliness brotherly kindness, and to brotherly kindness love.”



  1. Memorize the verse: it’s long but important.
  2. Students should understand the meaning of each of the spiritual gifts listed and the need to grow into a Christian life.


Background on the books:

            II Peter was written about 3 years after Peter’s first letter, probably AD 63-67.  He writes to some of the same believers but also uses his Jewish name, Simon. As he wrote this letter, he was in Rome facing certain death under Nero (Do you remember how Peter was killed?).

            The book of Jude was written by Jude, brother of James and son of Joseph, the earthly father of Jesus. Why was Jude (or Judas) a popular name among Jews in the first century? (Judas Maccabaeus, leader of the revolt against the Macedonian king Antiochus immortalized in the festival of Hanukkah)  Jude also did not become a Christian until after the resurrection of Jesus.  He wrote his letter, like that of his brother, to Jewish Christians. Jude was written about 18 years after the book of James and 27 years before the letters of John, probably AD 60-80.

            These 2 books are grouped together because of similar themes, although written to different audiences.  Their authorship has been well-recognized throughout Church history and the books speak of incidents involving the authors personally, but some modern scholars seem to think they may have been by the same author. How can we explain the similarity of theme without doubting their authorship?


Possible Lesson Plan:

  1. Open with prayer.


  1. Review the background of the books. Do you know the story of Hanukkah? To this day, don’t we name our children for famous or saintly people?


  1. Scripture lesson: Read and work on memorizing the verses. The read verses 3 and 4. Tohelp with memory work? Perhaps best to print verse in phrases on index cards, shuffle them, and have students in teams put it together again. See if each team can better its time!


  1. Review the physical growth of a baby? Where does it come from? What can it do at birth? At 1 year? At 3 years? At 6 years? At 10 years? At 12 years? At 18 years? Have the students brainstorm based on their own experience with younger children and siblings. Make a growth chart on the blackboard or a large piece of paper with the students’ replies.


  1. Have you ever wished there were a yardstick to measure spiritual growth? Well, here it is! What is the foundation? (faith) What is the first step? (goodness) What is the next step? (knowledge – Do we grow in knowledge in Church School?) Next? (self-control: let the knowledge change your actions and attitudes) Next? (perseverance: What does this mean? Why is it here? See Romans 7:19 lesson – keep at it) Next? (godliness – finally getting there – the saints exhibit this) Next? (brotherly kindness – being kind and forgiving is a good measure of how much like Jesus we are) Next? (love – now we’ve become very much like God in His love for all men) Who helps us to reach our goal? (see verse 3 – God will!) Does that mean it will be easy? Where are you now in your growth toward spiritual adulthood? Think of some specific events in the last few days or weeks that show evidence of one or more of the above traits.  Are you growing or stagnating?


  1. Make a growth chart: just like we do for children as they are growing physically, so we can do as we grow spiritually.

Take a piece of poster board about 1x3 feet for each student.

Draw a “ruler” (or glue a cheap tape measure) along one side.

Add the “yardsticks for spiritual growth” along the ruler and decorate with markers, stickers, crayons, etc.


  1. Close with prayer.