1 Peter 1:10-12
Of which salvation the prophets have inquired and searched diligently, who prophesied of the grace that should come to you:…
It is thought to be a sign of weakness to bow down before the Cross. The context teaches a different lesson. The prophets, who were men of great mental gifts, were deeply interested in this "salvation." The apostle goes a step beyond. He declares that the angels desired to look into these sublime truths.
I. THE NATURE OF THESE ANGELS. The Scriptures have revealed but little about them. The Bible was not given us to reveal their nature, but to make known to us the plan of salvation. Yet there is something about the nature of angels which we may know by the study of ourselves.
1. We have memory. History has a meaning to us. Our memories, at best, are very imperfect, but there are some things we never forget. Now, the memory of any one thing implies the possibility of a memory that will never forget. Now, angels, no doubt, have memories far more tenacious than ours. How this will add to their knowledge.
2. Then we have the power of connecting cause and effect, and the power of pure reason; and we have that still more marvellous power, imagination. Whither cannot imagination go? How much better are angels fitted by powers far more perfect than these to gather knowledge.
3. Then, again, we are hindered by our bodies — one-third of our time is taken up in eating and sleeping. Angels are free from all this.
4. Then consider how much more we know than we did fifty years ago. Yet the angels witnessed the birth of the worlds and systems of worlds. All history lays open before them. They know of God's providence. How much then these angels must know of God; I had almost said what do they not know of Him?
II. Consider, that notwithstanding all this knowledge THE ANGELS WERE NOT SATISFIED BECAUSE THEY DID NOT UNDERSTAND THE PLAN OF SALVATION. They heard of this plan and were deeply interested. They "desire to look into it." With all their powers of investigation, with all their vast knowledge, here was a matter that they had not fathomed, and that they greatly desired to know. Yet scientists sometimes feel that they are so busy as to have no time to study this salvation. They are busy at studying the structures of crystals. Why angels know all about them. They saw the particles taking their positions. These men are busy in investigating the strata of the rocks. Why, the angels saw the upheaval of the rooks which so diversified and distorted the strata. They were there at the formation of the earth and have witnessed all the changes. All these things, which so deeply concern these scientists, are plain as A B C to these angels, who. nevertheless, so desire to see into the plan of salvation, that subject which the scientists deem of so little importance.
III. IT IS NOT REVEALED TO US HOW ANGELS SOUGHT TO UNDERSTAND THIS MATTER. The visions concerning it came to the prophets, doubtless, as pictures. They did not fully understand all they saw. Moses, when he desired to see God, was told that no one could see the face of God and live. Another prophet saw a different picture, he saw Christ as a lamb led to the slaughter. Others saw still different pictures. Now I imagine that the angels, as the prophets traced the pictures they saw, would look over their shoulders to study this marvellous salvation. That word which is translated in the text, "look into," is a wonderful word. It means to look down into. It implies eagerness to see the bottom.
Parallel VersesKJV: Of which salvation the prophets have inquired and searched diligently, who prophesied of the grace that should come unto you: