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02/10/2021 / Test All Things

A Short Study of 2nd Peter 3:3-11

2nd Peter 3:3 Knowing this first, that there shall come in the last days scoffers, walking after their own lusts,

2nd Peter 3:4 And saying, Where is the promise of his coming? for since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning of the creation. 

2nd Peter 3:5 For this they willingly are ignorant of, that by the word of God the heavens were of old, and the earth standing out of the water and in the water: 

2nd Peter 3:6 Whereby the world that then was, being overflowed with water, perished: 

2nd Peter 3:7 But the heavens and the earth, which are now, by the same word are kept in store, reserved unto fire against the day of judgment and perdition of ungodly men. 

2nd Peter 3:8 But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. 

2nd Peter 3:9 The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance. 

2nd Peter 3:10 But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up.

2nd Peter 3:11 Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved, what manner of persons ought ye to be in all holy conversation and godliness,

———

Children and young people often ask: “What will happen at the end of the world?” The Bible is very clear. One day the world will end; it will be burned up by fire. People today just do not believe this. They think the world will go on and on for ever. The argument is something like this: things have always gone on and on the same, and they will always go on and on the same. There is nothing different. There is no sign that Jesus will ever come again, or the world ever end.

How up to date the Bible is! Peter in the last things he ever wrote (2nd Peter chapter 3) takes up this very point; he tells us that this is just what people will say (verses 3 and 4). Then he answers it – in three ways:

1. Things have NOT always gone on and on the same. What about the flood, when God drowned the world? Is it strange, then, that one day He will burn the world (verses 5-7)?

2. God is never in a hurry. He has said He will come – and He will. But with God a thousand years is just like a day. He doesn’t measure time as we do. He is not slow in keeping His promise.

3. God has a chosen people who must be saved. He will not (cannot) come till they are all brought to repentance and prepare for heaven. If Jesus had come a thousand years ago, many of His chosen would never have been born, never lived, never been called. But God is “not willing that any (of these chosen ones) should perish, but that all should come to repentance” (verse 9).

How clearly Peter answers the arguments of those who do not believe the world will ever end! Then he says, “the earth also and the works that are therein shall be buried up” (verse 10).

But what of those who do believe the world will end?

“Seeing that ye look for such things” – the end of the world – “be diligent that ye may be found of Him in peace, without spot, and blameless” (verse 14).

“Be diligent to be found of Him in peace.” One day we shall all be found of Him. Every one of us will be found by God. But not every one will be found of Him “in peace”. The only way we can be found of Him (“in peace”) is if we are found IN Him. That was Paul’s desire: “That I may win Christ, and be found in Him.”

“Without spot” – clothed in the Saviour’s righteousness, washed in His blood.

“And blameless” – “He is able to present you faultless before His throne with exceeding joy.”

An old saint and a boy had spent the weekend talking about the Lord’s second coming – the end of all things. As the old man said goodbye, his words were these: “We have talked a lot about the Lord’s second coming. If we have an interest in His first coming, all will be well.”

How clear Scripture is that the Lord Jesus will come again – in power and glory, to judge the world! His coming will usher in the end of all things. The resurrection will take place, the final judgement, heaven and hell. But the great emphasis of Scripture is the need to be ready. “Prepare to meet thy God.” (Amos 4:12)

“Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved, what manner of persons ought ye to be” (verse 11).

———

B.A. Ramsbottom

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