2 Peter 3
A reminder of what the prophets wrote  1
Doubt about the coming of Christ; the ancient world destroyed by water  3
The Lord will do as He said even if a long time has passed; like a thief  8
Earth to be destroyed; be holy  11
Be ready when He comes  14
Beware, some twist the Scriptures; Grow in grace  16
Text Comments
.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:
  1 - Beloved The term also appears in verses 8, 14, 17 and in 1jo0302.
  2 - Words We would refer to this as the Bible. It was the OT Scriptures considered holy and the writings of those who knew Jesus for the NT (Paul met Him on the road to Damascus).
  2 - So that you may keep in mind the words of the holy prophets in the past, and the law of the Lord and Saviour which was given to you by his Apostles. (BBE)
.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.
  4 - Fathers fell asleep The "fathers" are those who had come before. Peter probably had in mind fathers like Noah from early in the Bible story ge06 considering the next few verses. The word, sleep, describes those expected to be "awakened" by a resurrection ac2415. Also see Jesus' explanation jn1111-14.
  4 - Continue The idea that the future can be judged by the past is wrong in matters of God's promises. Many or most theologians of our day, however, do just that.
  5 - Willingly ignorant A choice to doubt mt2439.
  5 - Out of the water and in The earth was not covered with water; then it was. Also notice the concept of a firmament.
  7 - Reserved unto fire is6615. Literally, "The now heavens and the earth." Contrast with the flood of verse 5.
.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.
.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.
  8 - Day ... thousand years Some have taken this to be a mathematical equation, but it goes both ways. v9 explains. Also see below.
  9 - Not willing that any should perish Only those who refuse grace will be destroyed. By grace we mean more than nice words. Accepting it means putting it to work in transformation of character.
.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.
= = = = = = =
  Day of the Lord This is the final trouble for the wicked at the coming of Christ jl02, da1201. Before the righteous live again on the earth, it will be renewed re2101.
  Thief It comes by surprise mt2450 but then is noisy. See the table relating to the "thief" re1615.
  Elements The meaning of this term was different in Peter's time. Greek stoicheia;  literally "Things arranged in rows." So we may understand it to be the component parts of our world, am0905.
  Melt Greek luo. "to loosen" or "to break up." Compare is2419. The picture is of anarchy and chaos.
.11 Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved, what manner of persons ought ye to be in all holy conversation and godliness,
 12  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?
..13  Nevertheless we, according to his promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness.
  12 - Hasting We may help shorten the time for Christ's coming when He both punishes the wicked and saves the righteous.
  13 - New Discussed at v10. The atmosphere of righteousness will be a blessing to those who are there and will be reason why the wicked will not be there.
.14  Wherefore, beloved, seeing that ye look for such things, be diligent that ye may be found of him in peace, without spot, and blameless.
.15  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;
  14 - Found Some people believe that He makes us good when He comes. No, it is now that we have the opportunity to be ready by His grace. He finds us ready.
  14 - Without spot Pure behavior, walking in the light we have been given sanctified/cleansed. And blameless justified/forgiven.
.16  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 [twist], as they do also the other scriptures, unto their own destruction.
.17  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.
.18  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.
  16 - Hard to be undressed Paul could have said that about Peter, too.
  16 - Other scriptures Peter recognizes Paul's writing as [holy] "scripture."
  18 - Grow in grace This saving power from Christ leads ever closer to His character. We are considered ready as we continue to grow, putting away every evil trait as the Lord helps us see it.
  18 - Knowledge We may take this to be both learning about Christ as revealed in the whole Bible and learning to know Him personally jn1703.
A day as a thousand years
   This obviously isn't a formula for the length of a day because, mathematically, it is contradictory. Reading on in the context we discover the purpose for our verse. Although God may seem to delay His judgments, their coming is certain and He wants us to be ready all the time for Jesus' return which could be right away or far into the future. As it turns out some 2000 years have passed since Peter wrote this. We, like Peter's first readers, cannot wait to be ready.
    So how do we know about the days of creation? First because God said it was that way. I trust His word and expect you do to. Read Genesis 1 carefully. We find that "the evening and the morning were the first day. . . . the second day. . . . the third. . . ." Then we see that "evening" is the dark part of the daily cycle and that "morning" is the light part. Click the ball to see Gen. 1
    The gospel writers confirm this by recognizing the same way of naming the days. The first day is what we call Sunday, the second, Tuesday, and so on to the seventh. The first day and the seventh are mentioned. Friday was called "the preparation day." Read Luke 23:50 to 24:2. We get our modern day names from the pagan Romans. Click the ball to see the Luke passage
    We have an astronomical basis for our day and our year and, indirectly, for hours and minutes. The source of the week unit comes only from those first seven days creation week.

    The During creation week, the waters were divided, some above and some below. See Gen. 1:6-8 click   The water canopy above would have shielded the earth. At the time of the flood the rain fell as water from the upper firmament (something new).
    It has been thought that the ancients people thought that the sky was like an inverted bowl over the earth with stars attached. Recent study has shown that this is not so at all. Their understanding was apparently like ours.

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This concludes the writings of Peter.
John's letters are next.