From the beginning of the letter, the great apostle Peter recognizes that his readers share the same "precious" faith as the apostolic leadership of the church. All are saved through the righteousness of Jesus (the man) who is also the Jewish Messiah ("Christ") who gave himself on the cross as the sacrifice for man's redemption ("Savior"). When Peter says these four words together: "God and Savior Jesus Christ," Peter is saying this man who is the Messiah who became the Savior is God himself!
Peter tells his readers their faith is isotimos, or "equally precious." The faith of the readers is as valuable, as effective and as powerful as the faith of the great apostles. We all have the same starting point. We are all saved by the righteousness of the God/Man.
But, if we want to experience the "grace" and the "peace" of this salvation we are going to need access it "through the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord." The word "knowledge" is epignosis and means both additional knowledge than what you already have, which refers to gaining more than the knowledge we placed faith at the point of our salvation. Epignosis also refers to precise knowledge which is already established with details already set. Mere generalizations or personal opinions about "God and of Jesus our Lord" will not be good enough to produce the "grace and peace" that are ours "in abundance."
There is a direct connection between the amount of knowledge we have and the amount of grace and peace we experience.
- Little knowledge = Little grace and little peace
- Great knowledge = Great grace and little peace
Why? Because, the grace and peace are accessed by faith, just like our salvation was accessed by faith. But, before you can believe something you need to know it. Before we could believe that Jesus died for our sins we had to hear that information and gain that knowledge. You cannot believe what you have never known; and, you cannot know what you have not heard.
If you have no information about a person, you can have no faith in that person. If you know a person well, then you know exactly what to believe about that person. If a child is afraid of the darkness in their bedroom it is because they do not understand and their imagination presents things to fear. If the person is an adult they realize there are no monsters under the bed. They have knowledge which they can believe, and faith in that knowledge gives them peace.
Peter says we have the same precious foundational faith, but in order to grow further in this faith we will have to gain more knowledge of God and of Jesus.