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2 Peter 3:10-18 ESV

(10) But the day of the Lord will come like a thief, and then the heavens will pass away
with a roar, and the heavenly bodies will be burned up and dissolved, and the earth
and the works that are done on it will be exposed.
(11) Since all these things are thus to be dissolved, what sort of people ought you to be
in lives of holiness and godliness,
(12) waiting for and hastening the coming of the day of God, because of which the
heavens will be set on fire and dissolved, and the heavenly bodies will melt as they
(13) But according to his promise we are waiting for new heavens and a new earth in
which righteousness dwells.
(14) Therefore, beloved, since you are waiting for these, be diligent to be found by him
without spot or blemish, and at peace.

Vs. 10-14 can be summarized thusly: We don’t know exactly when Jesus is returning, so
we ought to be living holy lives. I will leave it for another day the eschatological
meanings of this passage ;)

(15) And count the patience of our Lord as salvation, just as our beloved brother Paul
also wrote to you according to the wisdom given him,
(16) as he does in all his letters when he speaks in them of these matters. There are
some things in them that are hard to understand, which the ignorant and unstable
twist to their own destruction, as they do the other Scriptures.
(17) You therefore, beloved, knowing this beforehand, take care that you are not carried
away with the error of lawless people and lose your own stability.
(18) But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him
be the glory both now and to the day of eternity. Amen.

3:15, 16 Earlier (1:20, 21), Peter provided his judgment concerning the accuracy of
the O.T. But what of the N.T.? In these two pivotal verses Peter makes three cogent
observations: (1) Peter observes wryly that Paul is not always easy to understand (v. 16).
(2) Consequently, the untaught and unstable have a tendency to “twist” these writings to
their own destruction. The word “twist” may be translated “distort.” (3) This process is
also characteristic of these false teachers in their handling of “the rest of the Scriptures.”
That last phrase clearly places the writings of Paul in the same category of Scripture with
the “prophecy” discussed in 1:20, 21. The same affirmation is made when Peter equates
the words of “the apostles” with “the holy prophets” (v. 2).
Believer’s Study Bible

and unstable; unsettled in their principles, who are like children tossed to and fro with
every wind of doctrine; the root of the matter is not in them; nor are they rooted and built
up in Christ, and so are not established in the faith; they are not upon the foundation
Christ, nor do they build upon, and abide by the sure word of God, or form their notions
according to it, but according to their own carnal reasonings, and fleshly lusts; and so
wrest the word of God, distort it from its true sense and meaning, and make it speak that
which it never designed;
unto their own destruction; for by so doing they either add unto, or detract from the
Scriptures, and so bring the curse of God upon them; and they give into doctrines of
devils, and into heresies, which are damnable, and bring upon themselves swift
destruction, which lingers not, and slumbers not. Gill

Twisting and distorting scriptures comes from both ignorant and unstable people.
Ignorance is not the same thing as dumb or stupid. I’ve never studied quantum physics
so I’m ignorant of that one topic. There are far too many “christians” today who are
ignorant of the scriptures.

The second group – unstable – are those Paul referred to as “being blown about by every
wind of doctrine.” Every new teaching, every new Christian fad, is embraced without
discernment. Gullible is another word that is well suited here.

Those who pervert and distort the scriptures do so at their own risk of destruction. Be
wary of people who try to make an experience fit into the bible by taking verses out of
context or reading into them things that simply aren’t there.

Peter has encouraged us to bear up under trials, to be discerning of false teachers within
our midst and to live holy, blameless lives because the Lord’s coming is at hand.