-This second letter, as it concludes, it much like the first letter in Peter’s estimation in that it is designed to stir up the believers’ minds by sincere reminders as to the prophetic utterances listed in Scripture by the command of the Lord Jesus Christ (2 Peter 3:1-2). He lists the prophets as well as the apostles as having this Divine authority into the revelation of God’s Word. First of all, he warns of the scoffing spirit that will be prevalent in the last days that scorn any thought that God is coming in judgment and that things will be different in the world. They will claim that all is going as it has since the creation and that the promise is null and void by God as to His coming. They overlook the fact that God has already judged the earth for sin once with the deluge of water in the flood and has reserved the next judgment for the destruction of the ungodly by fire (2 Peter 3:3-7). *Application* There will be a denial of the truth pertaining to God’s wrath and punishment upon those who reject Him as we see clearly in this passage. This is an easy point to argue in our present modern and tolerant age. No one wants to acknowledge that there is a Higher Power that is objective and concrete. Most deny any way that the Supreme Being would ever come for judgment and fire, even though His Word is being fulfilled prophetically every day. The culture has denied the existence of God and His coming by their actions in not being willing to repent and turn to Him in the distresses of our current time. They rationalize everything and try to construct a society without sin by legislation rather than Godly transformation. This will never work. God will have to come back and set things straight by His Word and Power. Acknowledgment of God’s redemption through Jesus Christ is the only cure for what ails the human condition.
-Peter maintains persistence in remembering that the Lord is patient and never slow in fulfilling His promises. One day is as a thousand years and a thousand years as a day. In other words, time is of no essence to the Sovereign. He is desiring that everyone turn to Him in repentance so that none perish (2 Peter 3:8-9). *Application* Here we see the patience and impartiality of our Lord. We can also implicitly see His love for us in these verses. We should always thank Him for delaying His judgments on us. He gives everyone time who still need His forgiveness so that possibly His mercy might be extended to all. Receive the goodness of the Lord; He is waiting for you.
-“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 (2 Peter 3:10).” Because of this irrefutable fact, what kind of people should we be in holiness and godliness (2 Peter 3:11)? *Application* This is the question Peter asks us and it is worth reflecting on. We should wait for and hasten (quicken, speed up) the coming of the day of the God in all hope, joy, faith, and love. We have the blessed assurance of a new heavens and a new earth in which righteousness dwells (2 Peter 3:13). We are to be diligent to be found by Him without spot or blemish and at peace being patient at all times and in all ways as we wait for His glory (2 Peter 3:14-15). We are not to be carried away with the error of lawless people and lose our stability being twisted with illogical human rationale that the ignorant and unstable distort to their own destruction. These misinterpret and misuse Scripture for their own selfish desires and benefit (2 Peter 3:16-17). Instead, we are to grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ (2 Peter 3:18).
-One more important point is made here in this chapter. Peter ascribes apostolic authority to Paul in his writing for Scriptural authenticity (2 Peter 3:15-16). While in a sense he wasn’t an eyewitness with the disciples (he was in his Damascus vision if we want to apply that), he is given apostolic authority by Peter, which is a very important piece of information here in this letter. This is important because Paul wrote over half of the New Testament Scriptures, which we subscribe to. We can also concur that some of the things Paul writes are hard to understand unless illuminated by the Holy Spirit to enlighten the meaning of these Divine texts. Therefore, Peter has made some important theological and canonical points here in this short letter pertaining to Scripture, or God’s Word (2 Peter 1:20-21; 3:1-2, 15-16).
Verses to Memorize: 2 Peter 3:8-9