“He indeed was foreordained before the foundation of the world, but was manifest in these last times for you.”
but was manifest in these last times for you
“Manifest” means to make clear. God made Jesus very clear to the people of the New Testament. He made the Lord Jesus visible to people of Peter’s generation.
Ransom through Christ was part of God’s eternal plan of salvation (cf. Romans 16:25-26).
“Now to Him who is able to establish you according to my gospel and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery kept secret since the world began 26 but now has been made manifest, and by the prophetic Scriptures has been made known to all nations, according to the commandment of the everlasting God, for obedience to the faith— 27 to God, alone wise, be glory through Jesus Christ forever. Amen,” (Romans 16:25).
“I did not know Him; but that He should be revealed to Israel, therefore I came baptizing with water.” John the Baptist made Jesus known to Israel, (John 1:31).
“And you know that He was manifested to take away our sins, and in Him there is no sin. 6 Whoever abides in Him does not sin. Whoever sins has neither seen Him nor known Him. 7 Little children, let no one deceive you. He who practices righteousness is righteous, just as He is righteous. 8 He who sins is of the devil, for the devil has sinned from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that He might destroy the works of the devil,” (1 John 3:5). The reason God made Jesus evident was to destroy the works of the devil.
“Manifest” is not the opposite of invisible but the opposite of indistinct, therefore, this implies the preexistence of Christ before his incarnation. What God purposed in eternity, He made distinct in time.
“Times” means succession of events. These are the successive periods of human history until Christ came (Galatians 4:4). The “last times” are the times of the New Testament writing.
“He then would have had to suffer often since the foundation of the world; but now, once at the end of the ages, He has appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of Himself,” (Hebrews 9: 26).
“For you” – Peter focuses the whole decree of redemption upon the readers of his generation. He sets them in the cutting edge of the drama of redemption. This would encourage them in their duress.
As with everything in the physical realm, so in the spiritual realm. Before people realize their need, God meets them with provisions for that need.
“Now to Him who is able to establish you according to my gospel and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery kept secret since the world began 26 but now has been made manifest, and by the prophetic Scriptures has been made known to all nations, according to the commandment of the everlasting God, for obedience to the faith— 27 to God, alone wise, be glory through Jesus Christ forever. Amen” (Romans 16:25).
We can take courage that God has a plan for the universe and for us individually.
God does not act from emotional impulse; He acts from eternity. He always acts rationally. He never exercises arbitrary will. God’s bases His decree on His most wise and holy counsel. He based His plan on His omniscience.
Since He is perfectly holy and incapable of partiality or unfairness, He made His plans according to that which is absolutely right. God saves sinners only if in doing so, He can remain absolutely just (Romans 3:25-26).
Even finite people, who are but creatures, put forward a plan before they act. A person who acts without design or purpose is foolish. Before an architect draws blueprints, he makes his drawings and forms his plans even to minute details. In his brain, the building stands complete in all its parts before anyone puts a spade into the ground.
A general must have a plan or thousands of his men will be killed. Napoleon began the invasion of Russia only after devising a detailed, extensive plan. He showed the lines of march and the timing of their arrival. He planned the equipment and supplies in detail. If he were omniscient, Napoleon would have planned where he wanted to situate every soldier.
If this is true of mere humans, how much more it is true of God! If this is true of God, do you take this into account when trouble comes your way?