The Second Epistle of Peter
A devotional commentary
By Raymond McGough http://www.discipleofjesussite.com Disciples of Jesus Ministry © 2009
Date and Author The apostle Peter is coming to the close of his life and in this letter he provides instructions and exhortations to the rest of the believers. (1:1, 12-15). Early church history and tradition hold the belief that the apostle Peter was martyred in Rome while under the rule of the Emperor Nero. Many may dispute this view my answer to that is why not? As far as I am concerned the apostolic Fathers have got it right. That being the case Peter died before A.D.68 because that was when Nero died Many New Testament scholars disagree that this letter comes from the pen of the apostle Peter because the grammar and style of the letter is quite different from the first letter but the conservative scholars are agreed that it does come from the apostle Peter and they point to the first verse of chapter one the fact that Simon Peter introduces himself by name and I agree with this view. Other conclusive facts are as follows the author asserts that he was with Jesus on the mount of the transfiguration. ( 1:16-18);He had written an earlier letter to these saints to whom this second letter is addressed too.(3:1 ): The author uses many words, clauses, and phrases similar to the First Epistle of Peter and genuinely illustrates this to be the work of the apostle Simon Peter. Background: The first letter of Peter encourages believers against the hostility and opposition of the world but the second gives a real grim warning of apostasy within the fellowship false teaching and false teachers.The kind who would lead many a stray To remain true to the apostolic teaching was the main concern of absolute importance. (Specifically 1:12-16:
3:1,2,15,16). Teachers of heresy will come to the fore and they are already here. (2:12-22) they are headed for destruction and they do not believe in the Lord’s return and ridicule such an idea. These type of ideas are well suited to the heresy of Gnosticism that at a later date would be more fully developed the root began in the first century A.D. and became fully blown in the second century A.D. Peter had a specific number of believers in mind.( 3:15), if this is the same believers to whom the apostle wrote too in his first epistle.(3:1) from this I can see that it was intended for the believers somewhere in Asia Minor. Content To combat any errors is to grow in the knowledge of the Lord. The key to this I believe is to grow in Christian spiritual maturity. I have to learn to trust in God obey His word the subject that the author begins his epistle with and ends.( 1:2-11; 3:14-18). Knowledge is more than academic brilliance that the world recognizes the Biblical meaning is to know God. An on going experience with God and Christ our risen Lord that transforms us into moral excellence on a continuing basis (1:2,3;2:20). To know God enables us to overcome the heresy of Gnosticism. The means whereby we obtain such knowledge of God is to be found in the Scriptures designated as the prophetic word( 1:19-21) and the teaching of the apostles.( 3:1,2,15,16) All of chapter 2 covers a detailed description of false teachings and those who instruct such and warnings against them. Included a serious warning of sliding into apostasy because they once had knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. (2:20). The final chapter stresses the Second Coming chapter 3 and is attacked by those who scoff and ridicule such an event which is still to come. This is an event that should motivate us all too godly living.
Personal Application The concerns of the apostle are still here in the earthly church of today and the future. the visible and invisible church of our Lord Jesus Christ. Worldliness and human philosophy, false teachers who teach half truths in regard to the Christian faith and these are his answers in and through the Holy Spirit to overcome the difficulties that present them now. The Deity of Christ Revealed... We see the deity of the Son of God Jesus Christ intertwined with God his Father. (1:1, 2) God the Father knows Christ He is His Son. (1:17) the divine purpose and activity of God the Father is made visible to us in and through His Son Jesus Christ. We see this in the blessings we receive from God through His Son Jesus Christ our Lord. The blessings of grace unmerited favours and the power of the Holy Spirit. ( cf.1:2,3,8;2:9.20;3:18).You and I have to look for his coming along with all of the saints of God.( 1:16) The visible arriving of Christ’s eternal kingdom how great and exciting that will be to see a tremendous vision of glory, majesty and greatness of God our King and all of the saints of God will share in the Kingdom as we are already part of that eternal kingdom on earth that is still to be fulfilled but that day is coming praise the Lord. (1:11) The Word of God we know as the Bible, and the Holy Spirit assures us that we have a destiny with our risen Lord, the King of glory. Jesus Christ. (1:16-21; see also 3:1, 2).
The work of the Holy Spirit There is only one direct reference to the work of God the Holy Spirit and we find it in 1:21, there we are told He moved human authors to write what He led them to write, ruling out any exclusive interpretation that would be different to everything else. All understand the same meaning and it is plain to all. One meaning only, not a hundred different meanings. That being the case the Holy Spirit is indirectly there because He breathes life into the written word of God and without Him how could we understand the Holy Scriptures? He is spoken of by the apostle in an indirect manner. He is the divine power that helps you and I to grow in the grace and knowledge of Jesus Christ our Lord.
The outline of the contents of the second epistle of the apostle Peter I Greeting 1:1, 2, II True versus false teaching 1:3-2:3 A Pursuit of moral graces 1:3-11 B Peter’s testament 1:12-15 C Prophetic Scriptures versus False teachers 1:16-23. III Exposure and doom Of false teachers A Destruction of The false teachers B Description of the False teachers 2:4-22 2:4-10 2:10-22
IV Warning against end time Deceivers A Scoffers in the last days B Believers and the day Of the Lord.
3:1-18 3:1-7 3:8-18.
Greetings 1:1, 2 (1) The writer introduces himself by using his first name Simon addressing the believers to whom he writes, so they know of him and may have met him, some of them at least. They could have been those whom he addressed at Pentecost when the Spirit of the living God was poured out on all flesh see Acts.2. Whatever; there seems to be a special bond between this great apostle and those to whom he write - the love of Jesus Christ our Lord - this is what brings my brothers and sisters close to me and me to them. We ought to have dedication to the cause of Christ’s church on earth, as we can see here in the life of Simon Peter. He goes on to say that he is a bondservant of our Lord Jesus Christ. A remarkable transformation of the Peter we find in the narratives of the gospel of Jesus Christ. In those narratives he is always pursuing fame for himself and to lord it over his brethren thinking that he was better than them I have been there. and I am sure we all have. But here we see a different Simon Peter. A bondservant in the time of Simon Peter’s life had no rights, the owner could do whatever he liked with the slave because that is precisely what bondservant meant in those days. He or she was the property of the owner and could be killed or tortured depending on the mood of the owner and nothing would be done against the man. Unless you were very rich and powerful,l life was cheap and because of the apostle’s stand declaring that Jesus Christ was the
only God, his life would be in constant danger. As far as The Roman Emperor Nero was concerned he was the only God and if he caught Simon Peter he would have him put to death, which he did. He had put his life completely at the disposal of his Lord and it would end in a bloody physical execution as it did. Many of us will pass from this life to go to be with our Lord without martyrdom but there will be many who will face it and God’s Holy Spirit will equip and enable us to face this. showing the love of God to our enemies in and through Christ Jesus who dwells within us, bodily along with the rest of the Godhead. It is not something we should desire. But we should always show a desire to serve our Saviour the Lord Jesus Christ who took the death penalty for you and I and looks for the same dedication towards Him, as we see here in the life of the apostle Simon Peter. Not only a bondservant he is also an apostle of Jesus Christ one who was chosen by Jesus to represent him in the world who saw him visibly Peter comes under this description he was one of the very first three of the disciples who saw Jesus and was commanded to follow him. (Jn.1:42) He had to have seen the resurrected Christ. (Jn.21:15)Planting churches and perform signs wonders and miracles - the apostle done all of these things during his life time. A true and an authentic genuine follower of our Saviour and Lord Jesus Christ so much so that God Himself invested the divine authority upon his apostolic office, His Son picking Simon Peter to be one of his apostles because of his obedience later on of which first and second Peter is very much proof of obedience, that led him to his execution and being taken home to be with his Lord. A tremendous challenge for you and me, but remember no matter who you are in the Kingdom of God; it is the Holy Spirit who speaks encouraging words to us, equipping and enabling us to please God in living out the Gospel of Jesus Christ our Lord, and overcoming the difficulties of this present life He and only He will help us to show the love of God to others. We have a great God in
the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ who is always good despite what the enemy says and brings against us, because our Father will give us the victory over these things in and through His Son Jesus Christ our Lord. Let us believe this and claim it for ourselves in the name of the Lord. Other manuscripts read ‘received faith’ of the same value therefore the apostle is writing to those believers who have received the same kind of faith as that of himself. They know Jesus Christ just as he does - the Holy Spirit has imparted belief to them as He had done for Peter. They know Christ as their Saviour and Lord just like you and I. What follows in the rest of the epistle shows us how easy and perilous it is to fall from the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ. As well as being an apostle Simon Peter was called to be an evangelist to go forth and preach the good news the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ not all of us are called to preach but we are called to speak to those whom the Holy Spirit leads us to about the gospel of Jesus Christ our Lord. Called to lead righteous lives because of the righteousness of Christ who dwells within you and I. It is never about you and me. The apostle Peter writes to remind the believers of this pertinent fact. We see this in the next part of the sentence. “….by the righteousness of our God and Saviour Jesus Christ:” We never obtained the righteousness we have through anything we have done, by good works or of any merit in ourselves, the righteousness we have is the righteousness of Jesus Christ, who Himself gives it to us as a free gift because of his life on earth his public ministry, crucifixion, death, and resurrection followed by his ascension into heaven and because of our belief and obedience his righteousness is imputed to us. A reminder that our faith at all times is rooted and grounded in the Person and work of our Lord Jesus Christ who intercedes on our behalf as that of our great High Priest until the Day of the Lord. We have one Lord, one faith, one baptism. (Eph.4.5)
(2) Grace is that which I am undeserving of, the unmerited favours of God towards a sinner through the gift of his Son Jesus Christ given to me as a free gift. (2 Cor.12:9). Peace is the result of the reconciliation I have with God the Father brought about by the free gift of His Son to me, Jesus Christ my Lord. Peace signifies the harmonious relationship between God and men; more specifically the relationship brought about for those who call upon the Prince of peace for salvation - Jesus Christ spoken of in the New Testament. (Lk.1:79) This is the knowledge that is imparted to us through God the Holy Spirit to those of us who have been born again and have been baptized in the Spirit of the living God who know Jesus Christ as Lord and God as our heavenly Father. The beginnings of the knowledge of God and there is much, much more to come for the apostle speaks of it being multiplied to us. This is knowledge that can only come from God and His Son Jesus Christ our Lord as revealed to us through God the Holy Spirit. To know God is to trust Him and for me to be able to grow as a believer I need the knowledge of God and Jesus Christ his Son my Lord so that I can be used by Him for the furtherance of the Kingdom of God. This can only come by listening to the Holy Spirit and my obedience. The same applies to all of God’s people everywhere and this is exactly what the instructions imply to the believers that the apostle writes too. II Trust versus false teaching 1:3-2:3
A Pursuit of moral graces 1:3-11. (3) The key to being able to please God is to rely on his divine power without it this is impossible. A dynamic power and force that was to be found in my risen Lord while He walked upon the earth that brought transformations to those people He touched
including the whole of creation, bringing about his Kingdom upon the earth that is still to be realised Kingdom living should be a normality for the spirit filled believers and spirit filled church and this is what we are to pursue. Asking God about the plans for His church through Jesus Christ our Lord and the part He wants us to play in that and being ready to hear what He says is how to please Him. When you and I accepted Jesus Christ as our Lord and Saviour He installed the means by which we can live our lives in a godly manner. Once again, it is by knowing God as a person you cannot get round this in any other fashion, this is exactly what the apostle is meaning here. “……through the knowledge of Him who called us….” Knowledge of Him points to a person not something that is impersonal. To know Christ as Lord, as God, and man I believe that is what is being said here not some invisible force. You and I are called to walk in lives that are worthy to God and not for any selfish purposes to glorify Him here on earth. (I Thess.2:12). The glory that is mentioned here is that of our Lord, it is because of his glory that we have been called and chosen by Him and for no other reason. Jesus made visible his glory in his first miracle in Cana and because of that the disciples believed in Him. I have to get this into my heart and my spirit, the fact that it is not about me. It is all about my Saviour and Lord the risen glorified Christ, my life must be centred in Him.( Jn.2:11). The idea of what is meant by New Testament Doxa is the glory that is centred in and on the person of Jesus Christ the radiance, splendour, and majesty centred in our risen glorified Lord. The essence of His glory is the absolute majestic perfection that dwells within Him evidenced by the miracles that he performed while on earth as a man, but as God the Son He has always been gloriously perfect through out all eternity. The virtue that Simon Peter speaks of here is that of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ the intrinsic moral excellence that radiated from Him while here on earth busy doing the will of God His Father in heaven.( I Pet.2:9).It also includes individuals.( Phil.4:8).
In this Epistle or letter this is what the apostle Paul said, (Phil.4:8. “ Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthymeditate on these things.” ) (4)Because of His majestic glory and virtue that shines and radiates from His glorious Person as the perfect man and the Son of God Jesus Christ our risen Lord has given to us exceedingly great and precious promises that are true for all of his people. On this very point the apostle Paul corroborates and agrees with Simon Peter the promises of God in Christ Jesus towards us are yes and amen. Let it be so that we will glorify God through our own personnel life when we allow Him to control what we do and say. (II.Cor.1:20). I note that I must allow God to control me for what His will and purpose is for my destiny never about me always about Him my Lord and my God Jesus Christ and the furtherance of His Kingdom visible and invisible upon the earth until the Day of His second coming then all will see His Kingdom. (II Cor.7:1). The end result of all this is so that I will be like my Saviour and God in His divine nature not that I have attained that because I will not be like Him until I meet Him and that will only be after He has called me home. But this is not only for me it is for all of my brothers and sisters the divine nature is what they must seek after too. This is what is meant by the word partakers. We partake of something in this case the divine nature of our risen and glorified Lord. It has only occurred because of the great and precious promises that we have received from Jesus Christ our Lord and that only because of His grace towards us The apostle Paul describes this in a superb fashion a man full of God the Holy Spirit ( 2,Cor.3:18 “ But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord”).
Peter the apostle reminds them in the next part of the verse of his letter what they have escaped from the corruption of the world through lust and nothing is more evident than that of to-day’s so called modern society men and women furthering their own nests at the cost of others and sadly that includes a number of our Christian Brethren whoever they may be? The very same thing was happening to the believers to whom the apostle writes but in their case it was worldly wisdom philosophy a doctrine called Gnosticism a special knowledge that in their eyes was meant for only a select few and there are those who still think in that manner to-day. Not the teaching of Gnosticism but because of the gifts that are provided to them from the Lord they think they are a cut above their brothers and sisters an erroneous idea that comes straight from the enemy be warned because God will judge with his righteousness all that do these things until they repent of their actions because God hates sin. When a brother and sister do wrong against another brother and sister sometimes after you have forgiven them to leave it to the Righteous Judge to deal with who is our God and He will deal with them as He does with all of us. The gifts whatever they may be are not for our own use they are to be used to edify the body of Christ bring His church into one body unite each believer as members of that body together as one in and through the love of God the Father and His Christ our Lord forgiving one another as He forgives us in order to give praise, thanks gratitude, adoration, and worship from grateful hearts that should merge into one as a body of the church of our Lord Jesus Christ without this, corporate worship and prayer is meaningless It only needs one believer or saint who is a member of the body of Christ to be in a bad relationship with another member to stop corporate worship and prayer from being as successful as it would have been. However; this is the perfection we must aim for. (5) Again the apostle underlines the fact that you and I must add virtue to our holy faith a subject that has already been discussed but we must attach great importance to this as our Lord desires this to be in our character. Peter uses the fashion of being repetitive to
drive a point home because it is crucially important for us to pursue godly living and again we have that word knowledge to know God is to have knowledge of Him not about Him He is indeed the greatest Person that you and I will ever know because He is God. The one triune God Father, Son. And Holy Spirit. I ask myself can I really grasp this. Only as much as my earthly intellect will allow and my spirit only as much as God will allow of Himself to be revealed because there will always be a section of His character that will be shrouded in mystery and it is not for the creativity of His hands to know which is you and I. who Are being transformed into the likeness of His Son Jesus Christ. Let us marvel that the great God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ through His mercy and compassion towards us wants us to know Him by knowing His Son Jesus Christ because of His love and the love of His Son towards us we who are his church. To want and be like Jesus Christ and desire Him is to seek after knowledge the true knowledge of God. These are wonderful words laid upon my heart by the Spirit of the living God infact they take my breath away as a human being how do I react only to love Him and be obedient to his voice what else can I say I am totally speechless. The secret to study diligently the Word of God and ask the Holy Spirit to come along side you and interpret the meaning of to your spirit and paradise will be opened up to you especially those who obey Him from the heart. We do this by listening to the Spirit of God. God the Holy Spirit is present in the physical body of every born again believer you and I must learn to trust Him and open our hearts and our spirit to Him this is the essence and secret of being able to do the work of God. What I mean by work is allowing God to change our character into his instead of Raymond McGough being like Raymond McGough self serving doing what my free will tells me I have to crucify the free will continually. A battle of the will the effort must come from me to say yes to God the Holy Spirit and do whatever He instructs me to do only by this method will I be changed from my old self to the image and likeness of my Lord
and Saviour Jesus Christ. An on going process on a daily basis. We are all instructed to do this with hearing by faith. Faith simply means trust God who uses the Holy Spirit to talk to us and being obedient to whatever He has to say. He who gave us the Holy Spirit Jesus Christ our Lord and God used another title for Him calling Him the Comforter because that is just one of the many works that He accomplishes for you and I on our Lord’s behalf and ours. The great apostle Paul spoke of it in the following manner, “Therefore He who supplies the Spirit to you and works miracles among you does He do it by works of the law, or by the hearing of faith?”(Gal.3:5). (6) When I allow this to happen to me as I have just said surrendering my free will to God the Holy Spirit H e will control my feelings and emotions thereby through Him His knowledge I will be able to exhibit self control which leads to patience and patience to godliness. But not only for me are how all the disciples of the Lord Jesus Christ are to function. The principle of laying down our own free will to that of our Lord. We cannot do the work of the Lord any other way He has to come first only He can change you and me. (7) When you and I do this we are able to show brotherly kindness which leads to brotherly love the substance of the fruit of the Spirit and can only be achieved through God the Holy Spirit operating in and through us individually and collectively.( Heb.13:1). The love of Christ operating in and through our lives to one another and our sisters because He is our perfect brother being the perfect man he is the first fruit and we are the fruits of his fruit... (8) The word if presupposes that for some this is not the case and they are devoid of the character of Christ. And none of the fruit of the Spirit can be seen in them. I have to check my motivation for what I do is it about me or for my Lord whom I serve? Spiritual pride is a terrible thing and it brings enmity from God towards us because we are busy feathering our own nests at the expensive cost of the damage we do to our brothers and sisters specifically their spiritual growth as members of the body of Christ
our Lord and it does occur that is why the apostle writes of this painful subject and experience it is for our benefit because it will continue on earth until He comes or we are called home before this event. Note that the words seem to just jump off the page barren and unfruitful. The Apostle Peter’s real life experience. He is one of the many authors of the New Testament. He is writing of his experience while being guided through life enabled through and by God the Holy Spirit. There is no written manual of the New Covenant he is the proof of that covenant for others while he lives. Proof too for those who would follow on the church of Christ of which we are members of the body and He is the Head. Again Peter reiterates the point over and over in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. “…in the knowledge of….” Not my knowledge not your knowledge the knowledge that Jesus Christ our Lord imparts to us of Himself through the working of the Holy Spirit in us to show the life of Christ to others. (9) A very clear indication of what is implied here we can all fall into the sin of apostasy. When you and I lack the knowledge of knowing exactly who Christ is in our inner man then we are all in great danger of the peril of going to a lost eternity. “..forgotten that he was cleansed from his old sins..” Is that possible? Peter clearly thought so or he would not have implied it here as he does. Remember all of the authors of the Old Testament and the New Testament were guided and influenced by the Holy Spirit what they should write for our benefit in order to grow in the Lord as they had done. (11) The antidote against this has already been mentioned in verses 5 to 8 the moral code we are to follow to enable us to show the love of Christ to others. Any one who does not grow in these virtues and falls into their old sins will pay the penalty of such actions unless true repentance is shown. When we do these things our election will be sure I am not advocating a life of good works but it is the evidence of Christ our Lord working in and through you and me his love being made visible from me to you and the world of the lost.
The verse contains a great promise to all of us and you can see that when you read it through. “…For so an entrance will be supplied to you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.” B Peter’s Testament.1.12-15. (12) When going through very difficult times as the apostle was here he reminds them to continue to grasp hold of the very things they have been taught which have been spoken of in the paragraphs above. I will not neglect my duty and love for my risen Lord to exhort you to pursue further your obedience and love towards your Lord and my Lord. My belief is that this was the thought that ran through the mind of the apostle. He knew them and their weaknesses. The fact that he had to keep on reminding them of what he had said to them in the above paragraphs of the need to know God. To know Him as I know my wife and she knows me not on a sexual level but on a personal level. Not knowledge of the mind which is simply information that leads to corruption, egotism, and tyranny over others the type of intellect that the world looks for. No wonder the Holy Spirit led the apostle Paul to write in one of his many letters that the wisdom of the world is foolishness in the sight of God. Exactly what Peter is combating here. The apostle lets them understand that he knows that they know this which raises the question why does he have to keep reminding them of this when they know. I believe in the next part of the verse we find the answer. “…and are established in the present truth.” For the present they know this but will they know it after the apostle is called home to be with his Lord. The question that is uppermost in Simon’s mind. He has already spoken to them of who to rely on to enable them to pursue a life of godliness the source behind this man’s Christ like life none other than the Holy Spirit Himself.
(13)As long as he remains in his physical body Peter calls it a tent he will continue to stir up the Holy Spirit that dwells within them by the same Holy Spirit that resides in Him To be able to grow into true spiritual people of God we must always recognize the crucial importance of the work of the Holy Spirit in you and me. Not the man and woman of God but the source behind them many believers follow great godly leaders and that is total folly because you and I have the same source dwelling within our hearts and our spirit to enable us to overcome all that the enemy would bring against us namely the Holy Spirit exactly what the Holy Spirit is doing in the apostle Simon Peter as he writes to the believers in Asia Minor the Spirit would stir up the Holy Spirit in them.. You and I have to lean on the Holy Spirit to enable us to live lives that please God there is no other route that we can take. When we are on our own there is no minister or pastor to help us but like Peter the Holy Spirit dwells within them bodily so they too can live lives that please God. The crux of the matter develop a relationship with God the Holy Spirit and He only reveals what God the Father and Jesus Christ His Son our risen Lord wants us to know and through Him we are able to do all things that please God and that should be the target of our God given lives on earth. Hallelujah!! (14) Now we come to the urgency of the apostle’s appeal he knows that his departure from earth is eminent the death he is about to face is brutal and bloody but he is resolute in his faith and no matter the type of death he will go through he is going home to be with his glorified Lord and Saviour the Lord Jesus Christ. A resolute faith in the face of overwhelming odds but he has the victory in Christ Jesus our Lord. Of special note he does not think of himself he is thinking of those he is leaving behind to face the world that they still have to live in. Speaking of his death I believe what the apostle is saying to them is that my time has come to die and leave this earthly life
behind. He could say with his friend and brother in Christ Jesus and fellow apostle Paul, (2.Tim.4:6) “For I am already being poured out as a drink offering, and the time of my departure is at hand.” Tremendous heroes of the faith they join the great heroes of faith that is to be found in that glorious passage of Hebrews in chapter11 that gives an account of all of God’s heroes up until the present and also in the future from the first book of the Bible Genesis to the last book of the New Testament Revelation. What a privilege and great honour it will be to stand fast in our one common faith in and through our glorious risen Lord the King of glory Jesus Christ and be ranked in that chapter with all these great godly men and women. I personally believe that this is the goal the apostle is setting before the believers that he is writing too not only them for all of the church of Christ our Lord until He comes. Interestingly he speaks of the manner of his death by only alluding to what our Lord had said to him in regard to this. An interesting suggestion perhaps in the heart and mind of Simon Peter is that the only death worth mentioning is our Lord’s because of what it accomplished for the sinner the free gift of himself that enabled the sinner to repent and receive mercy and grace where there was no grace because of the mercy of God. Perhaps he remembered what Jesus had said publicly to him in front of the rest of the apostles (Jn.21:18.) “Most assuredly, I say to you, when you were younger, you girded yourself and walked were you wished; but when you are old, you will stretch out your hands, and another will gird you and carry you where you do not wish.” But I am grateful to say that it was not the end of the matter in the following verse we are told this would be the death in which he would glorify God a rebuke tinged with mercy and compassion and a great promise to Simon Peter at the end of it. He would indeed glorify the Lord but not in the way he had thought of in his younger days. (Jn.21:19).
(15) The author speaks of a reminder who will remind them of the things that had been taught after he has departed from the world. He obviously cannot do it now he is no longer there what I believe can be the only solution is a indirect mention of God the Holy Spirit who brings all things to mind pertaining to godliness and the fruit of holiness. C Prophetic Scriptures versus false teachers. 1:16-23
(16) A fable is a half truth not the whole truth and the world is a wash with distortions of the truth of the gospel built on folklore myths and legends We did not follow these things the apostle asserts using the plural we obviously there were other apostles who were being accused of this on false premises. I believe Peter was including the apostle Paul because he met with him in the account of the Acts of the Apostles while Paul preached to the Gentiles Peter preached to the Jews. Once he had established the church at Corinth Paul had many things to say to them and on the same subject Peter is speaking of here. Mere words do not save anyone they are empty and lifeless when knowledge of the Bible is attained and knowing how to speak Greek and Hebrew alone with long sounding words that nobody has a clue about only sends them to sleep and possibly bores them to death even when it is translated into English Many Bible college graduates and even those who have graduated from university have this false notion I was one of them that had graduated from Bible College, from evangelical colleges and universities, born again but relying on their own intellect and wisdom. The only thing that they would accomplish is failure. Paul the apostle speaks of the remedy against this occurring to preach the gospel but not with the wisdom of words these in themselves affect nothing they would make the cross of Christ ineffective. At the beginning of the verse of which I am speaking of we find the key Christ sent Him so all he needs is to be found in Christ who
would enable him to speak in power there is nothing wrong with Greek and Hebrew but the driving power of the Holy Spirit must come with it or it is of no effect. (I.Cor.1:17). The word power is used by Peter in this particular text. He reports this to the Christians to whom he writes We saw as Peter had with two of the other apostles the power of our Lord Jesus Christ as he came to meet them after the mount of transfiguration where at the pinnacle of this event He shone with glory a brilliant white that they had seen when they had been with Him. It would be an experience they would not forget. “But were eyewitnesses of his majesty.” There were those apostles who would corroborate with Peter what he had seen because they had seen it too. A telling remark is the phrase when we made known to you they already knew. These Christians had never seen Jesus Christ in the flesh and seeing only produces belief even although they had been touched by the Holy Spirit but at this time they were ready to believe anything that was taught to them. The reason why the presence of God is evident in some churches and in others He is not. Evident in some of the saints and not as much in others I believe you call it the fruit of the Spirit. The Apostle describes our Lord as His Majesty his surpassing greatness nothing in the world can match that which includes sublime grandeur glory magnificence and splendour who is superb. Attributes belonging to our Saviour and Lord that are unsurpassed and never will be the glory and pomp of this world will eventually fade and die unlike our Lord. Majesty, glory, and honour that is eternal belongs to God and with Jesus Christ as the Son of God He is the second person of the trinity H e shares in this with His Father and God the Holy Spirit but here in this passage we see the Shekinah glory of his own person that is exclusively his for all eternity. Hallelujah and praise His wonderful name But even far more superior than that is the fact that although the Father and the Son are one they are two distinct individual persons and God as the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ as His own glorious
attributes Peter describes Him as the excellent glory which will always be his as God the Father of our Lord and because He is the Father and because of that reason only it will be superior to His Son. You and I can never imagine what Jesus felt when He received honour and glory from his Father when He spoke to Him in an audible voice from heaven so that those apostles who were with Him would hear it: “This is my Beloved Son in whom I am well pleased”. However; Jesus who knows all things as the Son of God knew that it was not for His benefit alone it was for those He had gathered about Him for that time now we can see the fruits of the Spirit of that encounter in the life of Simon Peter. They had received the word of God from God in the flesh Jesus the man saw Him in bodily form such as they were touched Him saw Him eat food and drink wine. Unlike those to whom they were listening too they had never see Jesus Christ in the flesh and it was to those who were among them who decided to follow these cunningly devised fables not to follow them. (18) Again the apostle reminds them of the authenticity and authority of his apostolic calling of God to be an Apostle of God. He and only he had been invested with the divine authority of the risen Christ to be his apostle to the nations. Only he and two other apostles who had been on the mountain with him heard the voice from heaven speak to Jesus. It is on those very important testimonies that they have to listen I can imagine the apostle thinking to himself as he writes this letter how Lord can I bring them back to you those who have strayed Jesus would have answered remind them of the authority I have placed upon you and that you were on the mountain top with me when a voice spoke ( 19) The Transfiguration that Peter was a witness to along with James and John is very important for all of us to understand correctly how God would want us to know it in these days and always because like then there will always be false teachers
God the Holy Spirit is the only source of true understanding He gives the correct understanding to all of us including Holy Scripture the same applied to the apostles they were no different to us in that sense The Transfiguration of our risen Lord had been prophesied of in what the apostle calls the prophetic word we know it as of the Old Testament. To find it we look to Deuteronomy at chapter.18:15; 19. This prophecy is realised or finds its fulfillment in the Gospel of Matthew. (Mtt.17.1ff.)Through out the Old Testament Christ and His coming kingdom had been prophesied of the apostle Peter with James and John had witnessed the coming of that on the Mount of Transfiguration of our risen Lord. Confirmed. It was now a reality Christ’s Kingdom had come despite false teachers denying this very fact as many do until the Day of the Lord when He will come and everyone will see Him. A very stern and serious warning comes from the heart and the mind of the apostle a challenge to change their course of action to take heed of what he is saying to them because at the moment they are in deep darkness. The light still continues to shine in the darkness it has not completely went out there is still hope being held out to them but it is their responsibility to gravitate to the light which is of course Jesus Christ our Lord If you once knew Jesus Christ as your Lord and for whatever reason you decided to go on your own path He is still there for you all you have to do is ask for forgiveness and repent from your actions and He will show you mercy as He does to all of His people exactly what the apostle is saying to the false teachers. “…..until the day dawns and the morning star rises…” This could be the star which is spoken of in the book of Numbers which I believe the apostle eludes too. (Num.24:17) The star who will come out of the house of Jacob I believe as Peter believes here that this is none other than Jesus Christ who is also the morning star and the Lord. At the end of the verse Peter talks to them about the day that will dawn and the Morning Star will rise in their hearts. The day
will come when Christ will return that day will dawn and He will rise in our hearts the visibility of Him to those who are His saints will be complete. What a great day that will be for those who love the Lord and have given our hearts and lives to Him. Not only His people but all the nations of the world. No one better than Paul the apostle in regard to his Lord and ours could have coined it better. I.Cor.12:13. “For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part, but then I shall know just as I am also known...” (20) I have already spoken of the fact that the prophetic Scriptures and the interpretation or understanding of is not private and for the exclusive use for any individual The Holy Spirit gives the same interpretation to all of God’s people who read His Word. The apostle hits this one right on the head and stops it there and then although many will try and say that they do have this exclusive right which runs contrary to the fact. (21) Not my understanding or interpretation but the understanding the Holy Spirit has laid upon my spirit the same understanding He gives to all my brothers and sisters in Christ... I will end this section by reading this verse by the great apostle Peter. “For prophecy never came by the will of men,but holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit The next three verses I have decided to treat separately although coming under the same section as above because they are crucially important for the time we live in Doctrinal Error that Leads to Destruction 2:1-3 (1) The author brings a very grim warning that we must be ever vigilant concerning our walk with God and to be careful to what we listen too. Look at the tone and severity of the opening of this verse the apostle writes, “But there were false prophets among the people,” Not there will be they were already there.
Our risen glorified Lord warned that this would happen after He had ascended to heaven. ( Mtt.24:24.) “For false christs and false prophets will rise and show great signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect.” Adding already to this horrendous inclusion there will be false teachers. Of these people the apostle Paul had this to say in his first letter to Timothy. ( I.Timothy.4:2,) “….speaking lies in hypocrisy, having their own conscience seared with a hot iron,” Not my words the words of the apostle Paul as he was led by the Holy Spirit. A further damming indictment is brought against them about their actions from the pen of Peter. “ …who will secretly bring in destructive heresies..” The word heresies come from the Greek terminology haireseis and it is very important we understand this for the up building of our common faith. What it means is to choose.Orignally it meant not only to choose but have an opinion too. This would continue to having a preference because of an opinion and a sentiment It slipped into the mode of self will causing disunity choosing sides picking what you believe and that in turn causes dissension where have we heard this before rings a familiar bell but Peter is spot on the nose. To correct this from happening we all must submit ourselves to reading the truth of God’s Word being submissive to the voice of the Holy Spirit as He speaks to us. The alternative is too unbearable to think of. The apostle goes on to accuse them of denying the Lord. I wonder what the apostle is reaching for when he writes about denial. To deny the Lord is a very grave matter and it concerns all who belong to Christ’s church. We turn to Jude for an explanation and at verse 4 “ For certain men have crept in unnoticed, who long ago were marked out for this condemnation, ungodly men, who turn the grace of our God into lewdness and deny the only Lord God and our Lord Jesus Christ.” It is very interesting how the English language came into being not a pure language because it borrowed words from different
cultures and different nations and used them to mean something entirely different from its original sense. The reason why I speak of this at this point is that the word Lord in Greek is despos from which the English language gets its word despot and all the bad connotations that comes with that from the English language. Despos in the Greek sense as in how God would want us to understand is that He is Lord and we must totally submit ourselves to Him to His will over our lives not out of fear and terror because He is not that kind of God but with gladness and rejoicing. Submissiveness to the will of God is the key to grow in truth and knowledge of God by this method we are able to please Him. “….the Lord who bought them…” So they had known the Lord and had tasted of heaven the Kingdom of God. They knew and had known Him. It is because of that fact that they bring upon themselves swift destruction.. The decision to go the opposite way is theirs not of God. What are we to look for in regard to these false prophets to stop us from being led from the truth of the gospel of Christ because in these last days this will increase as it has done. When a prophet or prophetess brings a false word from God it will lead us away from Him ending up in spiritual decline and the fall of moral behaviour. The prophet Jeremiah received a word from the Lord warning him that this would happen. ( Jer.23:32.) “Behold, I am against those who prophesy false dreams,” says the Lord, “ and tell them, and cause my people to err by their lies and their recklessness. Yet I did not send them, or command them; therefore they shall not profit this people at all,” says the Lord. To determine what is true and false there are things that God has put in place for our guidance It must strengthen the Word of God which will in turn guide me to Christ as Lord and give me a love for the people of God the church of Christ. Furthermore meet the criteria of the teaching of the Bible. Make my trust in God strong that which we call faith in return gives me an honourable pursuit in life. Stop me from doing that which I know to be wrong and encourage purity and
righteousness in my life. Finding confirmation and affirmation of my faith by godly men and women. Building up the faith of others by allowing the Holy Spirit to use me by strengthening them by whatever He would say to them through me and vice versa. (2)Unfortunately there will be many who will not subscribe or conform to the path the Lord wants them to take. There is no way back for those who blaspheme the work of the Holy Spirit (3) Covetousness and deception work hand in hand in this case deceptive words saying one thing and meaning another jealous of the gifts of the Holy Spirit that can be seen in you and me the fruit of the Spirit that everyone can see not realising that they are for the mutual benefit of us all including the gifts they possess the up building and the edification of the body of Christ the church of which we are members. III Exposure and doom of False Teachers 2:4-22 A 2:4-10 (4) God hates wickedness He through the angels who had rebelled against Him into hell because they had vaunted themselves against Him. They were not spared meaning they were totally lost forever Vaunted meaning they thought of themselves as better than God nobody is. At this moment God has got them chained in darkness. I am not talking metaphorically darkness and hell is as real as heaven and earth. To wait there until the Day of Judgment Sin is a serious complaint against God unrepentant sin a sin we keep repeating in life the same sin all of the time whatever it is. The Lord totally abhors sin He is a consuming fire that will completely destroy sin whatever it is. You and I will not go to heaven if we live like the world because God sees and hears everything. He must come first and that means the fruits of the Destruction of the false teachers
Spirit must be seen in us if it is not there then we must question ourselves as to why not and seek the remedy before our Lord. (5) The apostle then goes on to speak about what happens to ungodly people God did not spare the ancient world but killed all the ungodly with drowning He saved Noah and eight others a preacher of righteousness. Had they listened to Noah they would have been saved but they did not. The message Noah preached was one of righteousness there are many Christians who are uncomfortable with the preaching of the word even when it is evident they do not have this particular gift but they do not want the gifted men of God to do this even although it is a command of the Lord for evangelists to preach the word in mercy and truth no matter the opposition that comes against them. Brothers and Sisters in Christ who have this view must ask themselves does what I think align itself with the word of God and what He thinks or is it me and does it come from the enemy. Without evangelists we would have no New Testament John Peter and Paul of the most notable look were they did their preaching in the market places amongst the lost and the ungodly. Our Lord Himself is the mark of what we are meant to do it was on His express command that the apostles went forth and preached the word just as our Lord did and so did righteous Noah among the ungodly so they could have knowledge of the truth. (6) I like to reiterate what the apostle Peter spoke of in the first verse of chapter two, “Even denying the Lord who bought them.” So they knew the Lord just like those who know Him today can you fall from grace from this statement belonging to Peter the answer is yes. They are in a worse condition than those who never knew Christ the Lord. The question you and I must ask ourselves does Jesus Christ have his rule over our hearts, our spirit, and our lives? Jesus Christ is interested in me how I live my life before Him. This is gauged by whether the body of Christ our brothers and sisters can see Christ in us and us Christ in them. Let us get rid of this false notion that it
is about the church office we hold and any ministry we head up nothing could be further from the truth These things if they are allowed too could lead us further from the truth into the tyrannical obsession of being a leader and ruling over others in tyranny and not in love and mercy believing you are always right without asking God for guidance in these areas. This is not living a godly life as the Bible defines it The reason why the apostle is speaking to these believers in Asia Minor is to see the judgment of God on those who live ungodly lives in tongue and action look at the words at the end of the verse, “...making them an example to those who afterward would live ungodly;…”. God destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah because of their ungodliness. What kind of lives are we living can they be named among the ungodly or do we possess the fruit of the Spirit that everyone else can see or do we use the gifts of the Spirit for our own selfish purposes the end being ungodliness and destruction. Remember God knows the heart there is nothing He does not know. Precisely what Peter means here. (7) But if you are living godly righteous lives among the ungodly God Himself will rescue and deliver you from that situation and move you on. As we can see from Lot’s example the apostle describes him as being righteous and because of God’s righteousness that dwelt within his heart he was tormented day and night because of their lawless acts. (8) He had a dread and horror towards sin within his spirit because like his God our God He hated sin his spirit would shrink back from it as ours should. (9) In this verse we have a great promise followed by a very serious warning “...Then the Lord knows how to deliver the godly out of temptations...” Those whom God rescues must have godly characters the fruit of the Spirit must be evident in their lives not those who seek to promote self and we are all guilty of that one from time to time. Christ must come first what do I mean by that only that we do what pleases Him. What pleases you and I may not
always please our Lord, what we say and do towards others is very much on His Mind. The challenge is with us everyday to do what pleases God because the choice is always there to do what we think is right without consulting Him. Rebellion!! Continue to please your self has only one horrendous conclusion when you leave this life to be cut off from God forever we can see this in the rest of the verse. “….and to reserve the unjust under punishment for the Day of Judgment” What they have done in this life they may get away with but certainly not the next because unless they change judgment waits for them. (10) I look at what has been said by the apostle Peter and my spirit shrinks back in recoil to the absolute darkness mentioned in this passage demonic in its origin brought to the light by God Himself through the author the apostle Simon Peter a servant and a son of God. This verse stands out even more starkly than the rest which I thought was not possible but it does. “Those who walk according to the flesh….” Greek word for flesh is the expression sarx it means our physical body the composites that our human frames are made up of. But in a moral and spiritual sense sarx is the lowest of the natural mind of a man or a woman the seat and thrust from which evil desires come from Before his crucifixion Jesus spoke to his apostles on this issue. (Matt.26:41). “Watch and pray, lest you enter into temptation. The spirit is indeed willing, but the flesh is weak”. The flesh the same flesh the apostle speaks of here... We all need to pray that the Holy Spirit will indeed strengthen the spirit in you and me the only course against selfish living The author speaks out against a false life style rather than teaching Lust can be a good thing and a bad thing. However; Peter qualifies it for uncleanness. A craving for evil desires such as to gratify sensual longings, crave for that which is forbidden to us, actually longing for evil, wanting something that belongs to
someone else, trying to get things men and women experiences that are contrary to the will of God over our lives. Despise authority and are very presumptuous stubborn and self willed. Do not conform to the Lord’s criteria of a godly character. These characteristics are not of the fruits of the Spirit but of the carnal Christian and worse than those who have never known Christ. Some even speak evil of glorious ones obviously those who glorified God B Description of the false teachers 2:10-22 (11) Their rebellious sin is so terrible and dreadful that the angels who are mightier than them do not bring a reviling accusation against them before the Lord. (Acts.4:33). “And with great power the apostles gave witness to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus. And great grace was upon them all.” The accusation will be brought against them by the Judge who is righteous who judges all righteously the Lord Jesus Christ. The whole thing is absolutely dreadful because these are those who had once known Christ as their Lord and Saviour (12) Peter uses the word natural they have gone back to their old ways because the natural man does not understand the spiritual man. Brute beasts are how our writer describes them. They are worse off than the natural man because they had already known Jesus Christ as Lord now their peril had become a reality. The beasts in the field did not have the understanding of the natural man but they knew how to look after themselves not so these beasts described as being brutes. They had turned on their Lord and their own corruption will destroy them they now know of no other path. (13) Absolutely horrifying is that these people will eat with us and we may not know what their character is like to the outside world The whole thing smacks of self ,self centeredness, self importance, revelling in themselves. They have no interest in anything but
them and because of that they deceive themselves. But all of them will receive the wages of unrighteousness. (14) Now we come to a crucial point of this passage and one of the many reasons as to why the apostle wrote this letter. “..Enticing unstable souls,” Of these so called teachers the author delivers a damming indictment they are likened to an adulteress who cannot stop sinning. They want what is not theirs and belongs to someone else but they cannot stop wanting it, the desires and the craving of their hearts. Because they do not do the things of God they have been accursed. (Deut.27:16-26).) (15) There is a right way and there is a wrong one. Speaking of the false teachers the apostle writes of the fact that they had forsaken it - The way of Jesus Christ our Lord. Now they were following the wrong way the way of Balaam the prophet. He was ready to curse God’s people for profit. To curse a brother and sister is to gossip about their weaknesses to all and sundry and benefit from it for your own interests. Character assassination comes into mind this comes from the enemy and it is not of God. Personal gain is not always monetary it could be anything that a brother and sister will use to obstruct the will of God putting their own self interests as a priority whatever those interests may be but be warned God in due time will remove you unless genuine repentance is seen towards Him. These are the wages of unrighteousness (16) He was rebuked for his iniquity. The Lord is not slow to rebuke and chastise his people in whatever shape and form it comes in. You turn from God at your own peril. The decision to turn from God is not His it is always yours. (17)Wells without water they are of no use to anyone because they themselves are dead always seeking what they can devour and whom they devour become likewise. A well in a desert if it has no water and it is the only one for hundreds of miles the person who comes to it in need of water dies because of the lack of water in the well. The same principle applies to our walk with God unless I communicate with God and listen to what He has to say to me and
be obedient to his voice I will go in the opposite direction and do the things that I want and only living for me. For such people who not only do this but actively instruct others to do this reserved for them is the blackness of darkness I know this to be a reality from the personal experience of a brother in Christ. Who had been stung by a poisonous specimen of marine life while he was swimming in the sea in the tropics, while in the ambulance he was dying and cried out to the Lord to be saved. He remembered his mother was a Christian who taught him how to pray. God showed him a vision of hell, and then heaven in hell it was pitch black and cold and he could see no light but then he saw a great light that was heaven and was miraculously saved physically and then spiritually. (18) I would like to remind ourselves of the fact that like us those who had fallen away they were once like us grounded and rooted in Christ Jesus our Lord not everyone wants to take on the humility of our Lord. We see that in the description the apostle gives of them of how they speak. “…great swelling words of emptiness...” The wisdom of this world rather than that of God about how they see things human self sufficiency without the power of the Holy Spirit being behind it. Again the apostle speaks against the lusts of the flesh what other lusts is he thinking of here. Obviously he is talking about preaching but doing it all for the wrong reasons the wrong motivations using the gift to promote one self above others thinking that you are more special than your brothers and sisters in Christ Jesus. Spiritual pride I have been there. But it is recognizing this fact and to keep on repenting from it and stop yourself from doing it. Not so these false teachers. The accusation that is brought against them from the pen of the apostle illustrates the judgment they have brought upon themselves because of the entrapment of others from what they preach and teach.
You live by what you preach and that means holy and godly living in and through God the Holy Spirit. We are to love God the Father Jesus Christ the Son our Lord and God the Holy Spirit. This is a very dark passage but there is light in it too. The light is exposing the darkness. We who are of Jesus Christ our Lord are the light of this Dark Age and we must conform to whatever the Holy Spirit commands us to do and we must do it lovingly and gladly. It is by this method that we are stopped from living in error We are warned not to live in error and when we live in a manner that pleases God being obedient to His voice and listening to what He has to say to us then we will be safeguarded from error. To have an on going experience with God a personnel relationship spending time talking to Him and He talks to you. He speaks to me does He speak to you but you must want and desire this. Knowing God as a person is not knowing all of the Bible and the great doctrines on the contents of its pages although that is very important and helpful it is knowing God the Father and the Son through an intimate personnel knowledge and relationship with Him brought about by the influence and power of God the Holy Spirit who dwells within us. The false teachers had forgotten. (Jd.1:11). “Woe to them! For they have gone in the way of Cain, have run greedily in the way of Balaam for profit, and perished in the rebellion of Korah.” Allure to tempt others and that is actually what is happening here through their own intellect the wisdom of the age that we live in of the false teachers worldly wisdom is the flesh . (19)Continuing on the subject of error the apostle speaking to the church in Asia Minor says to them. “How can they promise you liberty when they are slaves of corruption or depravity,” speaking of the false teachers. Liberty and enslavement are contrary to each other. There can only be liberty or enslavement one cancels out the other. Whatever you and I are overcome by we will be a slave too. I believe our Lord makes this issue quite clear.
(Jn.8:34)Jesus answered them, “Most assuredly, I say to you, whoever commits sin is a slave of sin.” (20) This is a word from the apostle we must understand and see the importance that it brings to our belief in Jesus Christ as our Lord and Saviour although the letter was meant for the believers in Asia Minor it is for now and the future. Those to whom the apostle writes had already tasted the saving knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. They had already known Christ as Lord. I can hear the alarm bells ringing in me. Is it possible to fall from the grace of God the answer according to this letter of Peter’s is yes. They had already escaped the corruption of the world that had poisoned their spirits. (Mtt.12:45) Jesus speaks of this particular sin. “Then he goes and takes with him seven other spirits more wicked than himself, and they enter and dwell there; and the last state of that man is worse than the first. So shall it also be with this wicked generation” It will be even worse for them than the beginning I have no idea what is in store for them but I would not like to be in their shoes. (21) These are fierce words of condemnation from God a warning that you and I must always walk close to the Lord and to please Him nothing else will do. It would have been better that these so called believers had never known Jesus Christ as Lord. To deliberately turn from God and to continue to do so leads you back into the pit of hell a position that is more tragic than those who do not believe. (22) What a revolting thing to do to return to your own vomit like a dog but a dog knows no better and so they who turn their backs upon our Lord are worse off than the dog. The apostle using another illustration makes the point stand out even more a sow having being washed goes back and waddles in the mud and the filth. So it is with those who after knowing Jesus Christ as Lord having turned their backs against Him have been caught by the clutches of the enemy. Again!! (Prov.26.11.)… As a dog returns to his own vomit. So a fool repeats his folly.
IV Warning against end time deceivers 3:1-18 A. Scoffers in the last days 3:1-7 B. Believers and the day of the Lord. 3:8-18. A. Scoffers in the last days. 3:1-7 (1) Simon Peter uses the word Beloved to describe his love towards his brothers and sisters the love of Christ that dwells within him for himself and for others the church of Jesus Christ. Not the natural love that resides in us the love of Christ that surpasses anything else At the beginning of the sentence he uses the capital letter for the word Beloved to show the importance Christ feels towards His church always remember it is His church not ours. The author had already sent them a letter he speaks of this of being his second letter. His purpose as was in his first letter to stir up their pure minds. At last light after having been dragged down to what must have been an abyss of absolute darkness and the depravity of the human mind their souls must have recoiled in abject horror and dread that those among them could do the things that they had done and were still doing which continues in the present until the great day of the Lord. I know because as I was reading and studying the previous chapters my spirit was recoiling all the time at the deepness of those who once knew Christ of the darkness that they had allowed themselves to plunge themselves down into. I could not understand
why they had allowed this to happen to them regretfully of their own making and continues to be so. But now the apostle writes, (“I stir up your pure minds by way of reminder”) the answer of how to overcome the darkness the enemy was bringing against them a pure mind. Purity in the moral and ethical sense free from any kind of falsehood within us including no hidden motives to promote ourselves over and above our brothers and sisters that would cause them to fall from the path of Christ. Jesus spoke about this very subject. (Mk.12:30.) “…And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength. This is the first commandment.” Regardless of the circumstances we find ourselves in God always knows, when we focus on this commandment, and are obedient to it. He will help us because He loves us. Hard as that may be that is exactly the time He wants us to turn to Him because as well as being God He is our Father. (2) Let’s look closely at this next verse because the apostle meant it for us and those in the future until the Lord comes and to those to whom he writes. To remember the words of the holy prophets who had come before you and I were born. David takes the voice of a prophet and speaks the word of God introducing to us a King ruling in Justice. (2.Sam.23:2, 3.) “The Spirit of the Lord spoke by me. And His word was on my tongue. (3) The God of Israel said, The Rock of Israel said to me: He who rules over men must be just. Ruling in the fear of God.” This was not the case in the life of Peter or in our time. We have no one who rules in justice and equity in the world we live. But those who belong to Christ are in his kingdom. There is a sense that while on earth we are on the earth but also in the Kingdom of God. The apostle proceeds further to remind them of a vital truth of a commandment that comes from them but originally comes from their Lord and Saviour his Lord and Saviour our Lord and
Saviour. To read the word of God allow the Holy Spirit to give you the wisdom of God our Father and His Son our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ so that you and I will live lives that are totally different to the world we live in and in actuality Christ living in and through us because what you read of God’s word that is what you will be. There is no short cut. (3) Why we need to have an intimate and personal knowledge of Jesus Christ our Lord and that means getting to know him more and more listening to what He says to us and not what the scoffers are saying. The closer we walk with Him the more we will overcome. (4) The false teachers spoken of here is either speaking about the Patriarchs of the Old Testament or first century Christianity I believe the apostle has both in mind of who they are speaking against. But what they do not realise is that Jesus Christ made the creation it is through Him and the word of His power that we exist and He will bring it to a close. (Col: 1.15). He is the image of the invisible God, the first born of all creation Another reason why we must look to the glorified Christ to help us to overcome the world in these last days as the scoffers scoff at us but they have no idea what they are talking of. (5) Wilfully forget a deliberate choice they choose to forget God and that is exactly what the world has done and does. When you look around all you see and hear it speaks of God. The sky; the sea; the earth; and the universe the whole thing speaks of God To shut it out of your mind is a deliberate act of self will. The author reminds the true saints of a pertinent fact that the foolish and false prophets had deliberately forgotten. Apart from Noah and a few others the old creation had been totally destroyed by God and the humanity that had existed then because of their wickedness and perversity He drowned them with a great flood I believe it was worse than anything we have ever seen and we have seen some terrible ones. Note the apostle makes the point it is by the word of God that all things happen according to His will and purpose. (Gen.1:6, 9.) Then God said, “Let there be a firmament in the midst of the
waters, and let it divide the waters from the waters.” Then God said, “Let the waters under the heavens be gathered together into one place, and let the dry land appear”; and it was so. (7) A warning to all that although God is a loving Heavenly Father it does not alter the fact that first and foremost He is a righteous and Holy God. He is God and will accomplish His purpose and will destroying those who stand against Him including me if I foolishly decide to take that course of action and anybody else who does so. Let’s not pretend that we can do anything we like as Christians even when it means hurting one another to promote our own self interests because God can see what motivates our thinking .Nothing escapes his gaze and scrutiny. The whole of creativity exists because God wills it to be so not because of anything else it is His will and purpose for the moment that is the way it should be. By the word of His power the same word brought creation into being This is a frightening and awesome concept the purpose and will of the Lord God. Not my will and purpose. Not anybodies. Here we see the sovereign will and purpose of the Lordship of the Lord God over His handiwork. It should drive us to our knees those of us who know Christ as Lord and surrender our lives fully to Him. Learn to serve Him with awe and respect as one who is God a God who loves us He commands you and I to love Him Jesus Christ our Lord and Saviour with joy and gladness in obedience to His voice spoken in and through God the Holy Spirit. When we do this we will keep ourselves right before Him. The opposite is to dreadful an awful to think of to be destroyed by fire a painful and very physical death slow and excruciating agony that lingers until you expire but to be consumed by God’s holy fire is much worse not only physically but your spirit too. It will be in a fiery torment until the day of judgment of ungodly men and that day is approaching. The apostle Paul corroborates what Peter is saying here. (II .Thess.1:8.)
“…in flaming fire taking vengeance on those who do not know God and on those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ…” B. Believers and the Day of the Lord. 3:8-18. (8) Time is not relevant in the form we understand humans are limited to what they can or not do. God is not He is in control of time space and history. A very difficult idea for ordinary mortals to grasp with their earthly intellect as much as they try they will never succeed. A total impossibility because of the darkness of sin in the human intellect that pursues wisdom for its own sake believing that it will solve all the troubles of the world without God. It has not happened and it will not We see this in the rest of the verse in which Peter speaks of one day as being a thousand years and a thousand years as one day in the Lord’s presence. The time He allows is not for his sake it was for my benefit in order for me to be saved through the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ which was granted to me because of His mercy and no other reason and it is available to those who will believe. While He is still to return men and woman including children will have that opportunity meanwhile you and I must pursue holiness that can only come from God dedicating our lives to His Son our Saviour and Lord Jesus Christ. Reflecting Christ’s glory the fruit of the Spirit moral and ethical purity godly characteristics like kindness, long suffering, patience, mercy, and love to others. Not the natural love but the love of Christ who dwells within us. We will look at another passage in regard to time and how it is not relevant to God’s Person. (Ps90:4) “For a thousand years in your sight are like yesterday when it is past, and like a watch in the night.” It is nothing to Him.
(9) The Lord has promised His coming and as God He cannot lie to Himself it is out of Character. But He is withholding it until as He sees it the time is right. The prophet Habakkuk prophesied of this while under the guidance and influence of God the Holy Spirit. ( Hab.2; 3). “For the vision is yet for an appointed time; But at the end it will speak, and it will not lie. Though it tarries, wait for it; because it will surely come, it will not tarry”. The key to Christ like living when even our brothers and sisters in Christ Jesus are critical of us and openly hostile, judging us with their measuring rule for no good reason known to God. The fruit of long suffering, the long suffering of the Lord to us and to the lost that is why He delays His coming for the second time He is patient and long suffering towards us and commands the same from you and I towards our brothers and sisters in Christ and to the lost.( Is.30 : 18). Therefore the Lord will wait, that He may be gracious to you; and therefore He will be exalted, that He may have mercy on you. For the Lord is a God of justice; Blessed are all those who wait on Him. Our God does not want anyone to perish and that means everyone even if it means we find it hard to accept them because they do not fit in with our social calendar how dare we think like that towards those whom God has made!! The great apostle Paul speaks on this very issue. (Rom.2:4)? “Or do you despise the riches of his goodness, forbearance, and long suffering, not knowing that the goodness of God leads you to repentance?” The Day of the Lord 3:10-13.
(10) For those who will perish and be utterly destroyed this is a terrible and dreadful prophecy. The heavens will be no more I have no idea what that will look like, and I do not want to know. But add fervour and passion to my heart so I can serve the Lord as I go out to speak to the lost and stop as many as possible from suffering the destiny that lies in front of them if they do not repent before a Holy God.
The day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night. I have no idea when He will come but I must do what He bids me until that day What is waiting for the ungodly is so terrifying and dreadful that if they had any idea they would repent immediately!! The earth and the works that are in it will be burned up. And by the time it comes. It will be too late for the rest of the wicked!!! (Ps.102: 25, 26). “ Of old you laid the foundation of the earth, and the heavens are the works of your hands.(26) They will perish but you will endure; yes, they will all grow old like a garment”; (11) A challenge to the believers in Asia Minor in how they ought to live because of what is coming. The earth and the heavens as we know it will be dissolved at a future date and time. You must conduct your present lives in a manner that pleases God pursuing holiness and godliness those things that reflect the glory of Christ our Lord the fruit of the Spirit. Not only for the church then it is for the church in the present and in the future. You and I, we have to take up the challenge. None of the saints in Christ are exempt. The Lord commands us to live 24 hours and seven days a week for Him always pursuing His sovereign will for how we are to live. Holiness and godliness moral and ethical characteristics that only the Holy Spirit can provide us with. (12) To draw closer to God on a daily basis letting the love of Christ shine through our lives to those whom we speak and talk too promoting the gospel of our glorified Saviour and Lord. Our God Jesus Christ. Looking for the day when we will go to be with Him in glory I am looking forward to that great day. “Because of which the heavens will be dissolved” I am pondering over this remark of the apostle and wondering what it means. He is coming to take vengeance on the ungodly who have not repented and have murdered his people persecuted them and have thrown them in prison something that continues to happen all of the time because the enemy will use godless people to do his work
but that time will end. (Ps.50:3) “Our God shall come, and shall not keep silent; A fire shall devour before Him, and it shall be very tempestuous all around Him” The ungodly have had their opportunity to repent before God and accept his mercy from His Son Christ Jesus but they refused as they had done then and they do now and so it will be in the future until they have drawn their last breath. But until that time you and I have to tell them about the Good News the gospel of Jesus Christ so they can have access to the saving knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ and if they refuse then that is their choice and they will be without any excuse. However; what lies before them is far too terrible and dreadful to contemplate and ponder over. (Mic.1:4). “The mountains will melt under Him, and the valleys will split like wax before the fire, like waters poured down a steep place”. . (13) Only the people of God will be allowed into the new heavens and earth not the ungodly that kill maim and murder God’s people and refuse to recognize God. He alone has chosen them. (I s.65:17). “For behold, I create new heavens and a new earth; And the former shall not be remembered or come to mind). See too Isaiah 66.22.. “ For as the new heavens and the new earth which I will make shall remain before Me,” says the Lord. “So shall your descendants and your name remain”. The people of God from every nation and tribe including His own chosen people the remnant of the Jews. Be Strong and Resolute 3:14-18. (14) In view of the promise that has been made to us, you and I have to be about the Lord’s work. When not actively engaged we should focus on Him and be in constant communion with Him to be at peace with others giving them nothing to complain of against us the complaint having no substance. To be joyous and glad in what we do. When we do these things He will find us at peace. (I.Cor.1:18). “ For the message of the cross is foolishness to those
who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.” (15) Long suffering a virtue that we have all to possess to be able to show it to others in the same manner Christ shows it to us. We can only do this by loving the Lord Jesus as deep as we can because of His long suffering towards us. A gift of the fruit of the Spirit. The author of the book of Hebrews calls it patience. (Heb.6:12). “….that you do not become lazy, but imitate those who through faith and patience inherit the promises”. (16) The enemy can use Scripture to fool believers to guard against it make sure it glorifies Christ not me or you and that it edifies the body the church of the Lord Jesus Christ and exalts Him in majesty and splendour. False teachers will always do this to protect their own interests and they are not interested in the body of Christ our Lord. Peter writes of not understanding some of the letters of Paul but he does not change what he has written because he knows it has come from the Lord. Those who do this and continue to do it are on the path to destruction. (17) The believers to whom he writes know this they know what to do to stop them from falling into error. You and I have to concentrate on our personnel relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ desiring to know more and more of Him - A personal and intimate relationship - To keep growing in his grace, mercy, and love by doing this we will be able to show the same mercy, love, and kindness to others. (18) The conclusion but not the finality that is in the Lord’s hands. You and I are commanded to grow, the inference being is that while we live there is always a choice. God will not force Himself upon us. The road you and I take is up to us right up until our last breath. After reading what will happen to the ungodly my choice is to love Jesus Christ more and more for He is is my Lord and God. To know Him as He knows me or as much as possible and I pray it is the same for you.
“To Him be the glory both now and forever. Amen” Let it be so!!!
Disciples of Jesus Ministry © 2009