TEXT: 2 Peter 3:1-7
1 This second epistle, beloved, I now write unto you; in both which I stir up your pure minds by way of remembrance:
2 That ye may be mindful of the words which were spoken before by the holy prophets, and of the commandment of us the apostles of the Lord and Saviour:
3 Knowing this first, that there shall come in the last days scoffers, walking after their own lusts,
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.
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:
6 Whereby the world that then was, being overflowed with water, perished:
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.
Glen Spencer said, “The Christian’s duty is to live at all times the way he would want his Saviour to find him living at the rapture. Jesus Christ asked the question, when the Son of man cometh, shall he find faith on the earth? To live a holy life we must have the right perspective. The faithful Christian is living and watching for the return of his Saviour.”
Last week, we wrapped up an over year-long series in which we traveled through the Old Testament, learning How To Hope From the Israelites and Their Messianic Expectation of the first coming and the second coming. Your hopes should have been renewed and your faith strengthened throughout that series. Today we are starting a new series, in which we will look at what Peter wrote about the end of days in chapter 3 of his second epistle. We will look at the entirety of chapter 3 throughout this series, but today and for the next few weeks we will focus only on the first seven verses of the chapter. Steven J. Cole said that the central message of 2 Peter 3 is, “Since Christ will return in frightening judgment, we must live in holiness in light of that day.” Keep that central message in your mind as I preach on the second coming of Christ and how we should live until He comes.
The Bible Knowledge Commentary says about this passage, “Few people like to wait, but that is precisely what God calls believers to do as they anticipate the Lord’s return. Three times the word prosdokaō, “look(ing) forward,” appears in this chapter. This is the same Greek word translated “expect” in Luke 12:46. Waiting is to be coupled with watching. First-century Christians were close to the words of the Old Testament prophets about Christ’s second coming, to which were added the promises of the Lord Himself and the constant reminders of apostles such as Peter in letters like this. Second Peter 3:1–16 presents five facts about or perspectives on the Lord’s return.
A. Believers remember it.
Addressing his readers as Dear friends, Peter called this his second letter to this group, and said both letters are reminders. Many scholars assume that the earlier letter is 1 Peter. But some suggest that calling 1 Peter a “reminder” does not suit its contents. Of greater importance, however, is Peter’s purpose: to stimulate you to wholesome thinking. “As reminders to stimulate you” translates the same Greek words which are rendered “to refresh your memory” in 2 Peter 1:13. The phrase “wholesome thinking” (“pure minds” in the KJV) may also be rendered “sincere mind” or “pure disposition.” The English “sincere” is from the Latin words sine cera, “without wax.” Some pottery salesmen would use wax to cover cracks and weak places in pottery. Such a cover-up could be detected only by holding the jug up to the sun to see if any weaknesses were visible. Such a vase was “sun-judged”. God wants His people to have sun-judged minds, not those in which their sin spots have been covered over. Peter again reminded his readers of the need to remember. Others, like Peter, referred to the holy prophets, whose words were oracles regarding the day of the Lord and related topics. The command of our Lord and Savior refers to His teachings, which were then proclaimed by the apostles (cf. Jude 17). Peter’s linking the prophets and apostles placed them on the same level of authority. This also suits Peter’s earlier purpose of distinguishing the true servants of the Lord from the false. Believers do well to recall the writings of both Testaments regarding the Lord’s return.
Now, if you are not a believer in Jesus Christ, I urge you to trust in Him because He is coming again and you do not want to be left behind. Here is how you can place your faith and trust in Him for Salvation from sin and the consequences of sin.
First, accept the fact that you are a sinner, and that you have broken God’s law. The Bible says in Romans 3:23: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”
Second, accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”
Third, accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” Also, the Bible states in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”
Now that is bad news, but here’s the good news. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will.
Romans 10:9 & 13 says, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved… For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
If you believe that Jesus Christ died on the Cross for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead, and you want to trust Him for your Salvation today, please pray with me this simple prayer: Holy Father God, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. I am sorry for my sins, and today I choose to turn from my sins. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. I trust Jesus Christ as my Savior and I choose to follow Him as Lord from this day forward. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen.
If you just trusted Jesus Christ as your Saviour, and you prayed that prayer and meant it from your heart, I declare to you that based upon the Word of God, you are now saved from Hell and you are on your way to Heaven. Welcome to the family of God! Congratulations on doing the most important thing in life and that is receiving Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour. For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to Gospel Light Society.com and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door.” Jesus Christ said in John 10:9, “I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”
God loves you. We love you. And may God bless you.
Daniel Whyte III has spoken in meetings across the United States and in over twenty-five foreign countries. He is the author of over forty books including the Essence Magazine, Dallas Morning News, and Amazon.com national bestseller, Letters to Young Black Men. He is also the president of Gospel Light Society International, a worldwide evangelistic ministry that reaches thousands with the Gospel each week, as well as president of Torch Ministries International, a Christian literature ministry.
He is heard by thousands each week on his radio broadcasts/podcasts, which include: The Prayer Motivator Devotional, The Prayer Motivator Minute, as well as Gospel Light Minute X, the Gospel Light Minute, the Sunday Evening Evangelistic Message, the Prophet Daniel’s Report, the Second Coming Watch Update and the Soul-Winning Motivator, among others.
He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Theology from Bethany Divinity College, a Bachelor’s degree in Religion from Texas Wesleyan University, a Master’s degree in Religion, a Master of Divinity degree, and a Master of Theology degree from Liberty University’s Rawlings School of Divinity (formerly Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary). He is currently a candidate for the Doctor of Ministry degree.
He has been married to the former Meriqua Althea Dixon, of Christiana, Jamaica since 1987. God has blessed their union with seven children.