Scoffers and Materialism
2 Peter 3
The Folly of Scoffers, the Coming Day of the Lord (vv.1-10)
1 This, a second letter, beloved, I already write to you, in both which I stir up, in the way of putting you in remembrance, your pure mind, 2 to be mindful of the words spoken before by the holy prophets, and of the commandment of the Lord and Saviour by your apostles; vv.1-2 Consistency with the Divine Revelation. Peter was consistent with two things: the writings of the prophets (Old Testament), and the apostles who conveyed the teachings of Christ (New Testament, especially the gospels). This is a good example of when prophets are mentioned before apostles, as a contrast to when we have “apostles and prophets”, where the New Testament prophets are in view. Read more…
3 knowing this first, that there shall come at the close of the days mockers with mocking, walking according to their own lusts, 4 and saying, Where is the promise of his coming? for from the time the fathers fell asleep all things remain thus from the beginning of the creation. vv.3-4 Scoffing at the Promise of Coming Judgment.
5 For this is hidden from them through their own wilfulness, that heavens were of old, and an earth, having its subsistence out of water and in water, by the word of God, 6 through which waters the then world, deluged with water, perished. vv.5-6 God has judged the world before.
7 But the present heavens and the earth by his word are laid up in store, kept for fire unto a day of judgment and destruction of ungodly men. v.7 God will judge the world again.
8 But let not this one thing be hidden from you, beloved, that one day with the Lord is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. 9 The Lord does not delay his promise, as some account of delay, but is longsuffering towards you, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance. vv.8-9 What we need to understand about the Lord’s timing. There is “one thing” that we need to understand as believers. The difficulty with us is not that we doubt it will all come to pass. The difficulty is that the Lord has waited so long. The one thing we should remember is that the Lord’s perspective of time is not like ours; “one day with the Lord is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.” This is the “one thing” that will quiet our minds. But there is another thing, and it is calculated to comfort our hearts. The perceived “delay” is because God loves us. He doesn’t want any to perish, and he knows we love many in this world (family, etc.) that are lost. The “delay” is not a delay of His promise, “as some account of delay”. In other words, the Lord is not late. His timing is perfect. It is our understanding of His ways that is imperfect.
10 But the day of the Lord will come as a thief, in which the heavens will pass away with a rushing noise, and the elements, burning with heat, shall be dissolved, and the earth and the works in it shall be burnt up. v.10 The Day of the Lord.
The Holy Conversation and Godliness Which Becomes Us (vv.11-16)
11 All these things then being to be dissolved, what ought ye to be in holy conversation and godliness, 12 waiting for and hastening the coming of the day of God, by reason of which the heavens, being on fire, shall be dissolved, and the elements, burning with heat, shall melt? 13 But, according to his promise, we wait for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwells righteousness.
14 Wherefore, beloved, as ye wait for these things, be diligent to be found of him in peace, without spot and blameless; 15 and account the longsuffering of our Lord to be salvation; according as our beloved brother Paul also has written to you according to the wisdom given to him, 16 as also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things; among which some things are hard to be understood, which the untaught and ill-established wrest, as also the other scriptures, to their own destruction. v.16 It is important to notice that Peter considered Paul’s writings scripture.
Final Exhortation (vv.17-18)
17 “Ye” therefore, beloved, knowing these things before, take care lest, being led away along with the error of the wicked, ye should fall from your own stedfastness: 18 but grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and to the day of eternity. Amen.