March 30 - 2 Peter 3:8-13

Monday, March 31, 2014

2 Peter 3:8-13 – The Day is Coming

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. 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.

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.  

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.  That day will bring about the destruction of the heavens by fire, and the elements will melt in the heat. But in keeping with his promise we are looking forward to a new heaven and a new earth, where righteousness dwells.

Quoting from Psalm 90:4, Peter responds to those who mock the delay of Christ's return. God's perspective is quite different from anything a person could ever understand. He sees time through the lens of eternity, we see only by the limitations of our own short years. Even the grand scheme of history is but a moment in the vast panoramic timeline that God knows. We must not presume to understand what God will do and when He will do it.

To those same mockers, Peter reminds us of God's grace toward humanity. He is exceedingly patient with us.

"The Lord, the Lord, a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness," (Exodus 34:6)

"The Lord is slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love, forgiving iniquity and transgression" (Numbers 14:18).

"But you, O Lord, are a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness" (Psalm 86:15).

"Or do you presume on the riches of his kindness and forbearance and patience, not knowing that God's kindness is meant to lead you to repentance?" (Romans 2:4)

When the Lord returns, his anger will finally destroy sin, no matter the form that it takes. This is why He takes the time that He takes … He wants everyone to find repentance. He has boundless patience.

Peter then offers a challenge to all of us. Knowing that complete destruction … dissolution … is coming, he asks what type of people ought we be?  Since God comes to destroy sin – we should live holy and righteous … godly lives.

Holiness – remaining separate from evil, dedicating ourselves to God. Godliness includes worship.

We are to remain holy and godly … praying for the coming day of God, not because of destruction of sin, but because we are waiting for the new heavens and a new earth.

Do you pray for the Lord's return?