Today you finished 2 Peter – let’s go to Nahum next. It only has three chapters so you can finish the entire book in three days!
2 Peter 3:14-16 “And so, dear friends, while you are waiting for these things to happen, make every effort to be found living peaceful lives that are pure and blameless in his sight. And remember, our Lord’s patience gives people time to be saved. This is what our beloved brother Paul also wrote to you with the wisdom God gave him—speaking of these things in all of his letters. Some of his comments are hard to understand, and those who are ignorant and unstable have twisted his letters to mean something quite different, just as they do with other parts of Scripture. And this will result in their destruction.” (NLT)
What are you waiting for?
Peter challenges us to remember the works and the word of God. He reminds us of the coming judgement of God. He recounts the creation of the world and God’s work to purify his creation. I don’t know how you feel about our world today. Some may say it’s worse than it’s ever been. You may look around and see how people refuse to believe, how they reject the faith, how they deny the truth. You see these things and think the times we live in are quite desperate. Then I read 2 Peter 3. Within Peter’s lifetime and only a few decades after the death and resurrection of Jesus the times were no different than they are now.
People will always doubt. They will always deny. They will alway scoff at the things of God.
God delays his punishment because of his kindness, because of his desire to give all people time to repent. Not all will – but it won’t because they didn’t have a chance. It will be because they rejected that chance.
Side note – In verses 14 – 16 Peter calls the letters of Paul, ‘Scripture’. That’s a bold statement. It shows the influence of Paul and demonstrates that the most significant leader of the early church believed the words of Paul to be inspired by God. This knowledge helps us better understand the context of Paul’s writings. They aren’t simply great devotional material. They are more than letters designed to encourage his converts in their faith. They are the Word of God, profitable for reproof, correction, and instruction in righteousness.
Back on track – What are you waiting for?
The time will come when the certain judgement of God will fall on all people. Will you be found faithful? Better question – who will be found faithful because of you? There is a coworker you’ve been waiting for just the right moment to share Christ with. You have a family member who needs to experience the love of God. That guy on your kids ball team you’ve just been introduced to – he could use a dose of grace. What are you waiting for?
Right now there’s time. Time to let the story unfold. Time to share the gospel well. Time to love all people to Christ. But someday the time for such things will end. The work will be done. Christ will come. The day will pass. The thousand years will be over and – ready, or not, – we will meet him face to face.
Will you be ready? Who will be ready because of you?
Thank you for your Word and your promises. Thank you for waiting to cast your judgement on me and the rest of the world. Thank you for your patient endurance as you lovingly lead me into repentance. Forgive my sin. Remove me from temptation. Allow me to make decisions today based on your grace. Give me your wisdom. Help me be ready – to share the gospel, to live by faith, to do things your way, to follow you. Allow me to help others be ready to do the same. Like Paul was an encouragement to Peter, may I encourage others to follow you. On the day you return, may others be ready because of me.
I love you, in Jesus name –