5 Nov. 2 Peter 3:1-16

5 Nov. What did Peter mean by 'The Day of the Lord'?

"My friends, this is the second letter I have written you to help your honest minds remember. I want you to think about the words the holy prophets spoke in the past, and remember the command our Lord and Saviour gave us through your apostles."

"It is most important for you to understand what will happen in the last days. People will laugh at you. They will live doing the evil things they want to do. They will say, 'Jesus promised to come again. Where is he?..."

"But do not forget this one thing, dear friends: to the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years is as one day."

"The Lord is not slow in doing what he promised - the way some people understand slowness. But God is being patient with you. He does not want anyone to be lost, but he wants all people to change their hearts and lives."

"But the Day of the Lord will come like a thief. The skies will disappear with a loud noise. Everything in them will be destroyed by fire, and the earth and everything in it will be burnt up. In that way everything will be destroyed."

"So what kind of people should you be? You should live holy lives and serve God, as you wait for and look forward to the coming of the Day of God."

"When that day comes, the skies will be destroyed with fire, and everything in them will melt with heat. But God made a promise to us, and we are waiting for a new heaven and a new earth where goodness lives."

"Dear friends, since you are waiting for this to happen, do your best to be without sin and without fault. Try to be at peace with God. Remember that we are saved because the Lord is patient."

"Our dear brother Paul told you the same thing when he wrote to you with the wisdom God gave him. He writes about this in all his letters. Some things in Paul's letters are hard to understand, and people who are ignorant and weak in faith explain these things falsely... but they are destroying themselves by doing this."

          (2 Peter 3:1-16)

 

 

Peter reminds the believers that this is his second letter to them. In both letters, he has tried to encourage pure thoughts in their minds so they are well prepared for the ‘last days’ and the return of Christ to earth. They are not to listen to those who say Christ has broken his promise and will not appear again. (see 2 Peter 3:1-4)

In fact, the opposite is true. On God’s command the earth was created, and on God’s command and at his own appointed time – the ‘Day of the Lord' - the 'Day of Judgement’ will come. For “To the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years is as one day” (2 Peter 3:8) (see Psalm 90:4).

The Lord isn’t slow to do what he’s promised; rather he is patient because he doesn’t want anyone to be destroyed on the ‘Day of Judgement’. (2 Peter 3:9)

Believers shouldn’t be complacent, however, because “the day of the Lord will come like a thief” (2 Peter 3:10) and everything on the earth and in the sky will vanish – to be replaced by a new heaven and a new earth (see Isaiah 65:17 & Revelation 21:1).

So the believers should live holy lives dedicated to God as they wait for the ‘Day of the Lord’ and do their best to make it come soon.

At the end of his letter, Peter refers to “our dear brother Paul” and writes favourably about “the wisdom that God gave him” (2 Peter 3:15). Peter’s reference to the 'divine wisdom' given to Paul ‘in his letters’ (see Ephesians 3:3) suggests that he was familiar with Paul’s Letter to the Ephesians, written to the believers in Ephesus in c.60AD while Paul was under house arrest in Rome.

Peter (who was an uneducated fisherman – see Acts 4:13) respected Paul’s learned scholarship, but he adds at the end of his letter that Paul’s letters are sometimes difficult to understand and his complicated arguments can be twisted by unstable people (see 2 Peter 3:16). So he advises the believers to be on their guard for false teachers who might twist Paul’s message and lead them astray.

Peter concludes his letter with a benediction. He urges them to “grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. Glory be to him now and for ever!” (2 Peter 3:18).

The photo shows a 4th century Roman dish with images of St Peter ('Petrus') and St Paul ('Paulus') in the Vatican Museum, Rome.

You can read more from the Second Letter of Peter @ https://www.thebiblejourney.org/…/the-last-days-the-day-of…/


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