Tag Archives: 2 Peter 3
I. Paul’s Message (v. 15)
II. Paul’s Wisdom (v. 15)
III. Paul’s Consistency (v. 16)
We might use less confrontive words, but all of us need to be TOLD how to live, right? By nature we run away from the Lord, make our own choices, allow less-than-biblical priorities to govern our daily lives. As Frank and I are finishing up our reading of 2 Peter, I was impressed with the commands in this chapter about how to live one’s life. Here’s the chapter, followed by the list of commands telling us how to live.
That’s a lot to work on, don’t you think? You might consider taking one of these commands and fleshing it out, figuratively and literally! Have a great day.
Our post this morning summarizes some of what I have learned and will teach on at Cedar Valley Bible Church’s “Second Coming Conference” (November 16-17) in Iowa. We have thought through three prophetic texts: I Thessalonians 4:13-18, 2 Peter 3:1-18, and I John 3:1-10.
From I Thessalonians 4:13-18 we have seen how the Second Coming of the Lord Jesus ought to encourage our hearts! Prophetic material in the Bible is given, not simply to inform us about the future, but to form us in the present. The practical present application in I Thessalonians 4:13-18 is found in verse 18 which read, “Therefore encourage one another with these words.”
In our second text, 2 Peter 3:1-18, we have seen the theme of final judgment. In the light of God’s certain judgment in the future, Peter gives several specific present challenges to the believer. The believer is told, “Since everything will be destroyed in this way, what kind of people ought you to be? You ought to live holy and godly lives 12 as you look forward to the day of God and speed its coming” (vv. 11-12). Peter also commands the Jesus-follower with these words: “So then, dear friends, since you are looking forward to this, make every effort to be found spotless, blameless and at peace with him” (v. 14). Lastly, Peter warns his readers (since they have been forewarned) to “be on your guard so that you may not be carried away by the error of the lawless and fall from your secure position” (v. 17). They are then challenged to “grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and forever!” (v. 18).
In our third text, I John 3:1-10 the biblical writer lays out several practical implications for the HERE and NOW as he teaches about our ultimate glorification. In contemplating the truth that we will see the Lord Jesus and will be made like Him, John states plainly: “All who have this hope in him purify themselves, just as he is pure” (v. 3). He then gives several specific challenges about turning away from SIN.
As I am preparing for Cedar Valley Bible Church’s “Second Coming Conference” (November 16-17) in Iowa, I am working my way through three prophetic texts: I Thessalonians 4:13-18, II Peter 3:1-18, and I John 3:1-10.
We’ve looked at I Thessalonians 4:13-18 and seen how the Second Coming of the Lord Jesus ought to encourage our hearts! We are now thinking about our second text, II Peter 3:1-18. Let’s look at this passage again —
The theme of this text is: the Certainty of Final Judgment.
We’ve noticed, first of all, that prophetic teaching should lead us to wholesome thinking (v. 1). We were then reminded of God’s climatic actions in the universe (vv. 3-7). Specifically, creation (v. 5) and the flood (v. 6) are provided as evidence that God can — and will — dramatically interrupt the normal, everyday pattern of life (contrary to the uniformitarianism of Peter’s day).
The final challenge that I see in this passage concerns the practical, right-now, application of the truth of God’s final judgment (vv. 11-18). These believers are NOT told to buy ascension robes, climb to the top of the highest hill, and wait for the Second Coming. They are instructed: “Since everything will be destroyed in this way, what kind of people ought you to be? You ought to live holy and godly lives as you look forward to the day of God and speed its coming” (vv. 11-12).
These believers are also challenged to “make every effort to be found spotless, blameless and at peace with him” (v. 14). Being forewarned of this certain future, these Jesus-followers are to “be on [their] guard” so that they will not be “carried away” by error (v. 17). Lastly, they are challenged to “grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ” (v. 18).
There is no room for eschatological coasting! The certainty of FINAL JUDGMENT should motivate the believer to godliness, purity, and vigilance. (to be continued)
I am looking forward to speaking at Cedar Valley Bible Church’s “Second Coming Conference” (November 16-17) in Iowa. I want to work my way through three prophetic sections of Scripture: I Thessalonians 4:13-18, II Peter 3:1-18, and I John 3:1-10.
We’ve looked at I Thessalonians 4:13-18 and seen how the Second Coming of the Lord Jesus ought to encourage our hearts! Let’s move on to our second text, II Peter 3:1-18 and see its practical implications for RIGHT NOW. Here’s our text —
In this text we see the Certainty of Final Judgment.
We notice, first of all, that prophetic teaching should lead us to wholesome thinking (v. 1). We are to be neither eschatophobiacs or eschatomaniacs! Overfocusing on end times’ material without present life-change is not wholesome thinking!
We are then reminded of God’s climatic actions in the universe (vv. 3-7). Specifically creation (v. 5) and the flood (v. 6) are provided as evidence that God can — and will — dramatically interrupt the normal, everyday pattern of life.
I think Peter could write a similar book and call it He Is There and He Is Not IMPOTENT! These false teachers are counting on a kind of uniformitarianism that all things in the universe will continue as they always have. We read, “4 They will say, ‘Where is this ‘coming’ he promised? Ever since our ancestors died, everything goes on as it has since the beginning of creation.’” This perspective is sometimes called Uniformitarianism, also known as the Doctrine of Uniformity. This is the assumption that the same natural laws and processes that operate in our present-day scientific observations have always operated in the universe in the past and apply everywhere in the universe. But these false teachers took it a step further, arguing that God will not invade His creation by judgment.
But they have “deliberately” forgotten God’s climatic actions in creation and the flood! God’s timetable is not our timetable (“With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years like a day”). His delaying judgment is not to be thought of as His slowness in keeping His promise. His delaying judgment is His patience — giving people time to REPENT and not perish (v. 9).
We learn of God’s longing that people repent (v. 9). How does one avoid God’s judgment? By repenting and believing the gospel! Becoming converted involves both faith and repentance — believing the truths about Jesus and acknowledging and turning from our sin.
May I suggest that you and I pray that the Lord will us the opportunity to say those hard words at the right in red to someone we love? God’s future judgment is certain! And the only escape is repentance! (to be continued)
This commercial from Chevy cracks me up! Please watch the commercial below and then read my comments:
Thankfully, the Mayan calendar was wrong. The world didn’t end; we’re still here; and God is still on His throne! [I wonder what Harold Camping would say about this commercial?]
But — one day this world will come to an end, according to the Scriptures! We read texts like 2 Peter 3 which says:
3 Above all, you must understand that in the last days scoffers will come, scoffing and following their own evil desires. 4 They will say, “Where is this ‘coming’ he promised? Ever since our ancestors died, everything goes on as it has since the beginning of creation.” 5 But they deliberately forget that long ago by God’s word the heavens came into being and the earth was formed out of water and by water. 6 By these waters also the world of that time was deluged and destroyed. 7 By the same word the present heavens and earth are reserved for fire, being kept for the day of judgment and destruction of the ungodly.
8 But do not forget this one thing, dear friends: With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day. 9 The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.
10 But the day of the Lord will come like a thief. The heavens will disappear with a roar; the elements will be destroyed by fire, and the earth and everything done in it will be laid bare.
11 Since everything will be destroyed in this way, what kind of people ought you to be? You ought to live holy and godly lives 12 as you look forward to the day of God and speed its coming. That day will bring about the destruction of the heavens by fire, and the elements will melt in the heat. 13 But in keeping with his promise we are looking forward to a new heaven and a new earth, where righteousness dwells.
14 So then, dear friends, since you are looking forward to this, make every effort to be found spotless, blameless and at peace with him. 15 Bear in mind that our Lord’s patience means salvation, just as our dear brother Paul also wrote you with the wisdom that God gave him. 16 He writes the same way in all his letters, speaking in them of these matters. His letters contain some things that are hard to understand, which ignorant and unstable people distort, as they do the other Scriptures, to their own destruction.
Here are several observations about the real end of the world —
1. There will always be scoffers who mock the idea of a final day of judgment. They were wrong during the days of Noah and they are wrong now (vv. 3-6).
2. God delays that final judgment so that people can come to Christ through faith and repentance (vv. 8-9).
3. The day of the Lord will come without warning, like a thief in the night. Therefore we should be ready for that cataclysmic series of events. How do we get ready? Peter’s answer is that we should strive now to live holy lives! (vv. 10-13).
4. The delay in the day of the Lord coming should bring more than laughter at car commercials with a conclusion of falling frogs! We who know Christ should be grateful for God’s patience which means salvation for those who will believe the gospel (vv. 14-16).
1. If you are a believer in Jesus, have you thought about using a commercial such as this one to naturally move into the question of a final day of judgment?
2. If you knew that the end of the world were going to happen this week, what would you do differently with your life right now?