2 Peter 3

Chapter three begins with the same phrase as in 2 Peter 1:13. Peter’s goal was to “STIR UP” his readers “BY WAY OF REMINDER,” cementing in their minds the correct method of spiritual growth (2 Peter 1:5-7), the source of truth (2 Peter 1:20-21), and the dangers of being weak in truth (2 Peter 2:1-22). In wrapping up his letter, Peter noted that standing firm for the truth of Scripture would draw the attention of those who mock the truth (2 Peter 3:3-4). Similar to Paul’s assessment in Romans 1:18-19, Peter wrote that this mocking comes from a deliberate suppression and rejection of the truth that God has made clear to everyone (2 Peter 3:5).

One of the arguments the mockers will use is that nothing seems to change, 1 that God does not seem to move so he must not truly exist, and believers are simpletons for believing such nonsense. Peter comforted his readers by reminding them that God is not bound by time, and, because of his infinite longsuffering and desire for all to be saved, he will hold off his judgment until just the right time (2 Peter 3:8-9). However, when that time does come, his judgment will be swift and strong, and nothing will be able to stand against it. This should cause all believers to follow the path of spiritual growth God has given us, as we await the fulfillment of his promises (2 Peter 3:10-13). Peter mentioned that even Paul’s letters were already being misused and misunderstood, just like the other words given by God. By saying this, Peter publicly acknowledged Paul’s apostolic authority and placed him on the same level as the Hebrew prophets who spoke from God (2 Peter 1:21). He closed with a final encouragement to hold fast to the truth and a command that we should grow in both the grace and knowledge of Jesus, a balance that is not always well-maintained.

Notes:

  1. This is the same argument used by evolutionists today called “uniformitarianism.” They hold that “the present is the key to the past,” so whatever is happening today must have always occurred the same way. It is this belief, ignoring the miraculous events of an instantaneous Creation and catastrophic global Flood, that allows them to promote a theory that the Earth is billions of years old and that evolution accounts for what we observe today.

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