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1 Peter 1:10

Adam Clarke
Bible Commentary

Of which salvation the prophets have inquired - The incarnation and suffering of Jesus Christ, and the redemption procured by him for mankind, were made known, in a general way, by the prophets; but they themselves did not know the time when these things were to take place, nor the people among and by whom he was to suffer, etc.; they therefore inquired accurately or earnestly, εξεζητησαν, and searched diligently, εξηρευνησαν, inquiring of others who were then under the same inspiration, and carefully searching the writings of those who had, before their time, spoken of these things. The prophets plainly saw that the grace which was to come under the Messiah's kingdom was vastly superior to any thing that had ever been exhibited under the law; and in consequence they made all possible inquiry, and searched as after grains of gold, hidden among sand or compacted with ore, (for such is the meaning of the original word), in order to ascertain the time, and the signs of that time, in which this wondrous display of God's love and mercy to man was to take place; but all that God thought fit to instruct them in was what is mentioned 1 Peter 1:12.

Albert Barnes
Notes on the Whole Bible

Of which salvation - Of the certainty that this system of religion, securing the salvation of the soul, would be revealed. The object of this reference to the prophets seems to be to lead them to value the religion which they professed more highly, and to encourage them to bear their trials with patience. They were in a condition, in many respects, far superior to that of the prophets. They had the full light of the gospel. The prophets saw it only at a distance and but dimly, and were obliged to search anxiously that they might understand the nature of that system of which they were appointed to furnish the comparatively obscure prophetic intimations.

The prophets - This language would imply that this had been a common and prevalent wish of the prophets.

Have enquired - This word is intensive. It means that they sought out, or scrutinized with care the revelations made to them, that they might understand exactly what was implied in that which they were appointed to record in respect to the salvation which was to be made known through the Messiah. See the following places where the same word is used which occurs here: Luke 11:50-51; Acts 15:17; Romans 3:11; Hebrews 11:6; Hebrews 12:17.

And searched diligently - ἐξερευνάω exereunaōCompare Daniel 9:2-3. The word used here means to search out, to trace out, to explore. It is not elsewhere used in the New Testament, though one of the words from which this is compounded ( ἐρευνάω ereunaō) occurs. See John 5:39, (Notes) John 7:52; Romans 8:27; 1 Corinthians 2:10; Revelation 2:23. The idea is, that they perceived that in their communications there were some great and glorious truths which they did not fully comprehend, and that they diligently employed their natural faculties to understand that which they were appointed to impart to succeeding generations. They thus became students and interpreters for themselves of their own predictions. They were not only prophets, but men. They had souls to be saved in the same way as others. They had hearts to be sanctified by the truth; and it was needful, in order to this, that truth should be applied to their own hearts in the same way as to others. The mere fact that they were the channels or organs for imparting truth to others would not save them, any more than the fact that a man now preaches truth to others will save himself, or than the fact that a sutler delivers bread to an army will nourish and support his own body.

Who prophesied of the grace that should come unto you - Of the favor that should be shown to you in the gospel. Though the predictions which they uttered appeared to the people of their own times, and perhaps to themselves, obscure, yet they were in fact prophecies of what was to come, and of the favors which, under another dispensation, would be bestowed upon the people of God. The apostle does not mean to say that they prophesied particularly of those persons to whom he was then writing, but that their prophecies were in fact for their benefit, for the things which they predicted had actually terminated on them. The benefit was as real as though the predictions had been solely on their account.

Matthew Henry
Concise Bible Commentary
Jesus Christ was the main subject of the prophets' studies. Their inquiry into the sufferings of Christ and the glories that should follow, would lead to a view of the whole gospel, the sum whereof is, That Christ Jesus was delivered for our offences, and raised again for our justification. God is pleased to answer our necessities rather than our requests. The doctrine of the prophets, and that of the apostles, exactly agree, as coming from the same Spirit of God. The gospel is the ministration of the Spirit; its success depends upon his operation and blessing. Let us then search diligently those Scriptures which contain the doctrines of salvation.
Ellen G. White
This Day With God, 127.5

The Bible is the textbook, and it is to be searched diligently—not as we would read a book among many books. It must be to us the book that meets the wants of the soul. This book will make the man who studies and obeys it wise unto salvation. As food cannot nourish the body unless it be eaten and digested, neither can the Word of the living God profit the soul unless it be received as the teacher in higher educational lines, as above all human productions; unless its principles be obeyed because it is the wisdom of God.... TDG 127.5

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Ellen G. White
Maranatha, 366.1

Of which salvation the prophets have enquired and searched diligently, who prophesied of the grace that should come unto you: searching what, or what manner of time the Spirit of Christ which was in them did signify, when it testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ, and the glory that should follow.... Which things the angels desire to look into. 1 Peter 1:10-12. Mar 366.1

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Ellen G. White
The Great Controversy, 344

Even the prophets who were favored with the special illumination of the Spirit did not fully comprehend the import of the revelations committed to them. The meaning was to be unfolded from age to age, as the people of God should need the instruction therein contained. GC 344.1

Peter, writing of the salvation brought to light through the gospel, says: Of this salvation “the prophets have inquired and searched diligently, who prophesied of the grace that should come unto you: searching what, or what manner of time the Spirit of Christ which was in them did signify, when it testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ, and the glory that should follow. Unto whom it was revealed, that not unto themselves, but unto us they did minister.” 1 Peter 1:10-12. GC 344.2

Yet while it was not given to the prophets to understand fully the things revealed to them, they earnestly sought to obtain all the light which God had been pleased to make manifest. They “inquired and searched diligently,” “searching what, or what manner of time the Spirit of Christ which was in them did signify.” What a lesson to the people of God in the Christian age, for whose benefit these prophecies were given to His servants! “Unto whom it was revealed, that not unto themselves, but unto us they did minister.” Witness those holy men of God as they “inquired and searched diligently” concerning revelations given them for generations that were yet unborn. Contrast their holy zeal with the listless unconcern with which the favored ones of later ages treat this gift of Heaven. What a rebuke to the ease-loving, world-loving indifference which is content to declare that the prophecies cannot be understood! GC 344.3

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Ellen G. White
Education, 183

The prophets to whom these great scenes were revealed longed to understand their import. They “inquired and searched diligently: ... searching what, or what manner of time the Spirit of Christ which was in them did signify.... Unto whom it was revealed, that not unto themselves, but unto us they did minister the things, which are now reported unto you; ... which things the angels desire to look into.” 1 Peter 1:10-12. Ed 183.1

To us who are standing on the very verge of their fulfillment, of what deep moment, what living interest, are these delineations of the things to come—events for which, since our first parents turned their steps from Eden, God's children have watched and waited, longed and prayed! Ed 183.2

At this time, before the great final crisis, as before the world's first destruction, men are absorbed in the pleasures and the pursuits of sense. Engrossed with the seen and transitory, they have lost sight of the unseen and eternal. For the things that perish with the using, they are sacrificing imperishable riches. Their minds need to be uplifted, their views of life to be broadened. They need to be aroused from the lethargy of worldly dreaming. Ed 183.3

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