Living Godly Lives
According to historians, the Apostle Peter spent his final years as a leader in the church in Rome in the early to mid 60’s AD. His NT writings were to the churches in his area, what is now modern-day Turkey. All were experiencing severe persecution and Peter wrote to encourage Christians to remain faithful.
In his 2nd writing, Peter is reportedly in prison for the Gospel’s sake, and he is aware that his time is limited before his execution. The churches are facing false teachers that claim since Jesus has not already returned, that He’s not coming at all. Given this belief, no judgment is coming either, therefore many immoral teachings were being spread around. In his second letter, (ch-3) he uses these words, “Dear friends, this is now my second letter to you. I have written both of them as reminders to stimulate you to wholesome thinking.”
Our world today, visibly immoral and full of false teachers as well, needs to be stimulated to some wholesome thinking. Peter goes on to help his readers understand. I’ll try to reduce a whole chapter into a few words for us to consider.
We are encouraged to remember the teachings and commands of Jesus. False teachers and scoffers (unpleasant people who argue and disagree) are here and aren’t going away, but God’s Word will judge them. Be patient concerning the Lord’s promise of His return. He is not constrained by time, but is patient, wanting people to repent. When He does come, it will be unexpectedly, and people will not be ready. His coming will be the end of all things, and as promised, God will destroy the world we know.
Peter then says, “Since everything will be destroyed in this way, what kind of people ought you to be?” He doesn’t just ask the question, he also answers it. "You ought to live holy and godly lives as you look forward to the day of God and speed its coming. That day will bring about the destruction of the heavens by fire, and the elements will melt in the heat.”
As Peter moves to close this portion of his thoughts, he says, “So then, dear friends, since you are looking forward to this, make every effort to be found spotless, blameless and at peace with him.”
So today, let us take some advice from this Apostle, and “be stimulated to some wholesome thinking”. Let us understand Jesus will return, some day, any day, when this world is doing exactly what it’s doing right now, scoffing, disbelieving and arguing. Christ will be coming for the people who are “spotless, blameless and at peace with Him.” We can’t be that way on our own, but we can by the precious blood of Jesus Christ.
Last week we talked about “spurring one another on to love and good deeds”. Let us also “stimulate” each other to some “wholesome thinking.”
2 Peter 3. NIV