2 Peter 3 – IN Psalm 90 Moses reflects upon the eternity of God, and the fleeting nature of man: God is from everlasting, but man passes away like the grass of the Eastern fields, and if his years are prolonged beyond the normal span, “their pride is but labour and sorrow, for it is soon gone and we fly away” (verse 10, RV). Here is the classic doctrine of the mortality of man, such as we proclaim it from our platforms. But look what Moses does with it: “So teach us to number our days that we may apply our hearts unto wisdom.” From the doctrine we must draw the conclusion that if our life is indeed so short and for us too is soon gone, then we should be using it now while we have it, to learn that wisdom of God which alone can save us. Or consider Peter’s forecast of the divine judgements to come upon the world, when … ”the earth and the works that are therein shall be burned up”; and then his use of this: “Seeing that these things are all thus to be dissolved, what manner of persons ought we to be in all holy living and godliness …?” (2 Peter 3:11, RV) … So it is with all the doctrines of scripture; they are all intended to have a transforming power, and it is in this way that we should view them. This reflection provokes another: if the scriptures are designed to have such a vital influence upon us, how regularly and how prayerfully we should be reading them; and what a wise arrangement it has been that in our daily readings we set out to read all of them, and not just a selection according to our taste.
FRED PEARCE, The Christadelphian, 1977, page 169.
3This second epistle, beloved, I now write unto you; in both which I stir up your pure minds by way of remembrance: 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: Knowing this first, that there shall come in the last days scoffers, walking after their own lusts, 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. 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: Whereby the world that then was, being overflowed with water, perished: 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. 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. 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. 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. Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved, what manner of persons ought ye to be in all holy conversation and godliness, Looking for and hasting unto the coming of the day of God, wherein the heavens being on fire shall be dissolved, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat? Nevertheless we, according to his promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness. Wherefore, beloved, seeing that ye look for such things, be diligent that ye may be found of him in peace, without spot, and blameless. And account that the longsuffering of our Lord is salvation; even as our beloved brother Paul also according to the wisdom given unto him hath written unto you; As also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things; in which are some things hard to be understood, which they that are unlearned and unstable wrest, as they do also the other scriptures, unto their own destruction. Ye therefore, beloved, seeing ye know these things before, beware lest ye also, being led away with the error of the wicked, fall from your own stedfastness. But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and for ever. Amen.
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