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THE BOOK OF 2ND PETER
The epistle of 2nd Peter has 3 chapters, 61 verses, and 1,159 words. It was written by the apostle Simon Peter around 64-68 A.D. It is Peter's last epistle, and was written shortly before he was killed for Christ. We know this because in chapter 1 and verse 14, Peter tells us that he must shortly "put off his tabernacle" (body).
The church fathers say that Peter was crucified upside down for his faith in Christ. Whether that is true or not, we know that this epistle is Peter's last. It is his "swan's song," just like 2 Timothy is Paul's.
Many dispute the fact that Peter was indeed the author. But, his authorship can easily be proven within the epistle itself. For instance, Peter out right tells us that he is the author in 1:1, and in 3:1. Plus the fact that in 1:17-19, Peter himself tells us that he was on the Mt. of Transfiguration with Jesus (this is verified in Matt. 17:1-7).
The final bit of evidence is found in 1:14 when Peter tell us that God "shewed" him his manner of death. This account is found in John 21:18,19. This proves that it is Peter writing, and not anyone else. With all this evidence we can confidently say that Peter is undoubtablely the author.
Now that we have established Peter's authorship of the book, let's discuss Peter's character. This epistle shows how Peter has changed since his first epistle. He has humbled himself. This humility can be seen in chapter one and verse one in comparison to the opening of his first epistle. In first Peter 1:1, he says "Peter an apostle..." Whereas in this epistle, he opens by saying, "Simon Peter, a servant..."
This epistle also shows Peter's desire to see Christians grow. Notice what he says in the last verse of this epistle. "Grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ..."
In his first epistle, Peter tells his converts to desire "the sincere milk of the word as new born babes" (1 Peter 2:2) However, when he writes this letter, he wants them to grow more mature and not remain babies. To help them grow, Peter gives seven things in chapter one and verses 5-7 that Christians should have added to their faith. This will also help keep them from falling.
Peter also wants them to grow in biblical knowledge. He uses the word "knowledge" seven times in this epistle, and stresses that knowledge is important to know Jesus Christ better. It will also keep them from being decieved by false doctrine.
The main theme of this epistle is to warn other Christians about false prophets. Most of chapter 2 deals with the subject. And, Peter tells those to whom he is writing that knowledge of the scriptures is the best way to overcome heresies and to spot the false teachers. Peter says we have "a more sure word of prophecy" (2 Pet. 1:19), than anyone else. It's the word of God!
Peter's epistle is also written to remind Christians of some things. Peter uses the word "remembrance" four times in this letter. The references are 2 Peter 1:12, 13, 15, and 3:1. In chapter two, Peter gives three examples from the Old Testament in order to remind Christians about the results of sin, and about God's judgment for it.
The first example is in 2:4 about the angels that sinned, and how they are locked up waiting to be judged. The next example is in 2:5 about the wickedness of the world in Noah's day, and the judgment of God by a flood. And, the final example is that of Sodom and Gomorrah, and God's judgment upon them by fire for their sin.
The epistle of 2nd Peter is a very small book, but it does have a lot to say to a Christian. And, it does contain an awful lot of doctrine in it's 3 short chapters.
So, without further adieu, let's begin a verse by verse study on the 2nd epistle of Simon Peter.
2nd Peter Chapter 1
2 Peter 1:1 Simon Peter, a servant and an apostle of Jesus Christ, to them that have obtained like precious faith with us through the righteousness of God and our Saviour Jesus Christ:
Right away, we see a change in Peter's character. In his first epistle, he boldly proclaims that he is Peter (which means a rock), and an apostle. But, here Peter calls himself Simon which means sifting sand and a servant. Thus, he humbles himself greatly between writing his epistles.
2 Peter 1:2 Grace and peace be multiplied unto you through the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord,
Notice that it says, "of God...and of Jesus our Lord." Certain scholars of the baser sort try to use these words and the same words in Titus 2:13 to prove that the King James Bible down grades the deity of Jesus Christ. They say that the "and" makes two different Gods This is of course ridiculous. These same critics of the King James Bible use the corrupt versions (NIV, NASV, RSV, etc.) which in John 1:18 does give you two Gods. One is God, and the other is a begotten God.
Now, the fact is that there is only one God, and this God has three parts: The Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, which we call the trinity.
This verse is talking about the knowledge of God the Father, and the knowledge of the Son (Jesus Christ). It is one God in three parts.
2 Peter 1:3 According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue:
"His" refers to Jesus Christ. The "us" is Christians. And, the "him" is Jesus Christ.
2 Peter 1:4 Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.
The fifth word "us" refers to Christians. Peter says that God has given to his followers some promises in the Bible. Some references for these promises are as follows:
1 Peter 5:7
John 6:37; 10:28,29
1 Cor. 10:13
Notice also in this verse that Peter uses the word "precious." Peter uses this word several times in his epistles. The word "precious" means of great price or value, beloved or dear. In this verse Peter says that God's promises are "precious."
Below are some other things that Peter thought were precious.The blood of Jesus Christ 1 Peter 1:19
Faith in Christ 2 Peter 1:1
Christians 1 Peter 2:4
Jesus Christ 1 Peter 2:6,7
The trial of your faith (suffering) 1 Peter 1:7
2 Peter 1:5 And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge;
Peter continues his thoughts from the last verse. The word "this" refers to the divine nature in verse four. When a man gets saved, he is a son of God, and has a new nature. He's been born again (1Peter 1:23). But, that new nature will always war with the old sinful nature (for further specifics see Romans chapters 6, 7, and 8.) A man must walk in the spirit in order to grow as a Christian, and Peter says he must give "all diligence" to strive to live a Christian life and fight the flesh.
In the rest of this verse, Peter is basically saying, now that you are saved by faith (Eph. 2:8), add to that faith. Then he lists seven things in the next three verses that every born again child of God should have in order to be a mature Christian. They are:
6. brotherly kindness
This verse talks about"virtue" which means moral excellence, chastity, or courage. And, "knowledge" which is an assembly of facts.
2 Peter 1:6 And to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness;
"Temperance" means self restraint or self control. "Patience" is waiting for something or putting up with something or enduring. And, "godliness" is devoted to God or living for God.
2 Peter 1:7 And to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity.
"Kindness." is the quality or habit of being kind to others. "Brotherly kindness" would be showing kindness to other Christians.
Also, notice the word "charity," which means giving. But, it means more than just simple giving, it has to do with sacrificial giving. It's root word means scarce, costly, and dear.
Paul gives us the best definition of "charity" in 1 Cor 13:4. He says, "Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up." According to Paul, charity is more than just giving, it is also enduring (1 Cor. 13:7) or putting up with someone or something. And, in 1 Cor. 13:13, Paul tells us that "charity" is the greatest thing a Christian can have. In fact, he goes so far as to say, "[If I] have not charity I am nothing" (1 Cor. 13:2).
2 Peter 1:8 For if these things be in you, and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Peter says you should have these things "in you" and if you do, you will be a better and more a mature Christian. You will also grow in the "knowledge" of Jesus Christ. To Peter, it was important to know God. Not just to know about him. Every Christian ought to strive to know God better.
Now let's look at this a little deeper in light of the scriptures. The verse says you'll get "knowledge" if you have these seven attributes "in you." Proverbs 2:10 tells us that knowledge is someting you have in your soul. The verse then goes on to say that wisdom is something you have in your heart.
Knowledge and wisdom are found together a lot in scripture, and wisdom is something that every Christian needs. Proverbs 9:10 says, "The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom: and the knowledge of the holy is understanding." According to this verse, "knowledge of the holy (Christ Jesus)" is "understanding." And, according to Proverbs 17:24, "Wisdom is before him that hath understanding..." Thus, wisdom comes from understanding, and understanding comes from knowledge of the holy. That's why Peter makes such an appeal to knowledge. Every Christian should have some Bible knowlege and it should continully grow as he studies his Bible everyday.
Knowledge, understanding, and wisdom are always connected in the scriptures. Understanding is important, because without it, you can't get wisdom. And, Proverbs 4:7 says that wisdom is "the principal thing."
But, wisdom only comes after understandng. (See Prov. 14:33 and 10:23). So we see there is an order to Christian growth. It is knowledge first, then understanding, and then finally wisdom.
Now here's a great verse about wisdom. Proverbs 9:1 says, "Wisdom hath builded her house, she hath hewn out her seven pillars." What are these seven pillars that lead to wisdom? According to Peter, these seven pillars are those listed in the preceding verses: virtue, knowledge, temperance, patience, godliness, brotherly kindness, and charity. And, they will help a Christian grow and mature in Christ.
Finally let me say this about verse 8. Peter says that if you have these things, you will not be "unfruitful." That means if you have them, you'll be fruitful. This is a reference to the Fruits of the spirit. In Galatians 5:22, 23 Paul gives us the nine fruits of the spirit. They are:
Notice how close these are to what Peter says in these last couple of verses.
2 Peter 1:9 But he that lacketh these things is blind, and cannot see afar off, and hath forgotten that he was purged from his old sins.
"These things" refers to those things listed in vs. 5-8. And, a man that doesn't have those things is "blind." He can't see. These seven things can help a Christian see.
A Spiritual application of this verse to a Christian is for him to remember where he came from, and what God saved him out of.
2 Peter 1:10 Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure: for if ye do these things, ye shall never fall:
Peter says to make your calling and election sure. Every Christian is called to be like Christ, and to holiness. God wants you to do right! But, it's hard, and Peter says if you have these 7 things, you'll do well, and it'll keep you from falling.
Also, notice in the end of the verse that Peter does not say that if you don't do these things, you'll lose your salvation. He said that you "shall never fall." A Christian cannot lose his salvation, but he can fall. These things listed in verses 5-7, are to help a Christian grow, and keep him from falling, or backsliding.
2 Peter 1:11 For so an entrance shall be ministered unto you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.
To a Christian, the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ refers to the Kingdom of God. (Rom. 14:17). To a Jew in the tribulation, it would apply to the Kingdom of Heaven, or the millenial kingdom of Christ.
2 Peter 1:12 Wherefore I will not be negligent to put you always in remembrance of these things, though ye know them, and be established in the present truth.
Peter says he wants to be faithful, and not negligent in calling these things to our rememberance. That's a preacher's job. To remind the saints of some things that they already know. Oh how quickly we forget things! We need to reminded of things continually. And, repetition is the best way to learn something.
Peter also says he's not "negligent." A preacher should not to be either. He shouldn't be lazy or slothful, but diligent to teach and preach the word. Preachers should be able to join Paul in Acts 20:27, in saying, "For I have not shunned to declare unto you all the counsel of God."
2 Peter 1:13 Yea, I think it meet, as long as I am in this tabernacle, to stir you up by putting you in remembrance;
Now the use of the word "tabernacle" here is very important. It is three things:
1. A type of your body (2 Cor. 5:1-4)
2. The date of the 1st Advent
3. The date of the 2nd Advent
Let's look at each on of these. First, Peter is refering to his body as a tabernacle. There is a reason for this. The tabernacle in the Old Testament is the place where God could come and dwell with his people. But, in the New Testament, the tabernacle is the body of the believer. When a man gets saved, God lives inside of him. Ephesians 3:17 says that Christ "dwells in your heart by faith."
Paul says the same thing in 1 Cor. 6:19. He states, "What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?" So, Peter uses the word tabernacle in place of the word body.
Secondly, it's a type of the 2nd Advent. This is seen in Matt. 17:1-4 on the Mount of Transfiguration, which is a type of the second advent.
On the mountain we find Jesus with Peter James and John standing afar off. Then up show Moses and Elijah talking with him. These are God's two witnesses in the tribulation according to Rev. 11:3-12, and Malachi 4, yet they show up here. Then Peter open his mouth and says, "Lord...let us make here three tabernacles; one for thee, one for Moses, and one for Elias (Elijah)" Why would he ask this? Because it was the feast of Tabernacles!
During the feast of Tabernacles, it was custom for the children to build something. They were to build booths according to Levi. 23:39-43. And, the fact that Peter said that, proves he was still thinking about that feast. So he asked God if they could build three tabernacles instead of booths for Jesus, Moses, and Elijah. His heart was in the right place because he wanted to do something for God, but he opened his mouth to soon, and received a rebuking for it. In Matt. 17:5. God basically tells Peter to shut up and "hear...him [Christ]." Thus, Peter was rebuked. But, his outburst does give us a look into the time of the 2nd Advent. According to the Bible, it's during the Feast of Tabernacles.
In the Old Testament, there are three feasts that the children of Israel were supposed to keep unto the Lord. First was the Passover or the feast of Unleavened bread. Secondly was the feast of Harvest or Pentecost, and lastly was the feast of Tabernacles, also known as the feast of Ingathering (Exod. 23:16, 34:22). During these feasts, every man in Israel was supposed to make an appearance unto the Lord.
Now if you know your Bible, you remember that Christ died on the Passover. He was our Passover lamb. You'll also remember that Pentecost was when Jesus Christ descended up into heaven, and the Holy Spirit came down (Acts 2). It'll also be when the rapture of the church takes place. Acts 1:11 tells us in like manner as Christ arose, so must he return. When Jesus arose, the Holy Spirit came down to dwell in believers. When the rapture takes place, the holy spirit will go up.
That leaves us with the Feast of Tabernacles, and that's when the second advent will be. Christ will come back to this earth to rule and reign as King for a thousand years, and he'll tabernacle or dwell among us. This is found very clearly in Zechariah 14 verses 16-19. It tells us that at the 2nd advent, when Christ appears, the nations must keep the Feast of Tabernacles. They also must keep that feast every year after that.
Finally, it's a type of the 1st coming of Jesus Christ. When Jesus came to this earth the first time, he was born in a manger. And, the time he came was on or around the Feast of Tabernacles. Remember the Tabernacle in the Old Testament was the place were God dwelt and could meet with man.
But, when Jesus came to this earth the first time, it was to dwell with mankind. Matthew 1:23 calls him "Emmanuel" which means "God with us." Jesus came to this earth to live with man, and that's exactly what he did for 33 years of his life. But, man rejected Jesus Christ and killed him. God knew this would happen, and used this as a way for mankind to be saved. Christ's first coming was to die for man's sins, and his second coming will be to dwell with man on this earth for one thousand years. We call this the millenium.
Now, let's look at how we know that Christ's first coming was during the feast of Tabernacles. First, we need find out when the feast of Tabernacles is. According to the Bible it is in the seventh month on the Jewish Calendar. This lines up with September on our Gentile calendar.
The first day of the year on the Jewish calendar starts halfway through March on our calendar. But, our new year starts with January.
The following are the months of the Jewish calendar in comparison to the Gentile Calendar.
Gentile months Jewish months
1st January Abib (our March-April)
2nd February Jyar or Iyyar (our April-May)
3rd March Sivan (ourMay-June)
4th April Thammuz (our June-July )
5th May Ab (our July-August)
6th June Elul (our Aug.-Sept)
7th July Ethanim (our Sept.-October)
8th August Mar Hesvan (our Oct.-November)
9th September Kislev (our Nov.-December)
10th October Tebeth (our Dec.-January)
11th November Sebat (our Jan.-February
12th December Adar (our Feb.-March)
Our calendar did not always start on January. In fact, in England for centuries, the new year started in March. Why? Because that was Israel's new year. This can be seen through our use of words in English. The month September starts with "sept" which is the root word for seven. October has the root word "octo" which means eight. November starts with "nove" or "novo" which is the root of nine. And, December has "dece" in its beginning which comes from the root word for ten or "deci." Thus, you have this:
September = 7 (in spanish = siete)
October = 8 (in spanish = ocho)
November = 9 (in spanish = nueve)
December = 10 (in spanish = dies)
Counting backwards to one, you will get March. Thus, March is the beginning of the new year in the Jewish Calendar, and in the Bible. And, the feast of Tabernacles is in the seventh month, or September on our calendar today.
It is in this month that Christ was born. And, it just so happens that on September 20st-23rd, the sun is closer to the earth than any other time of the year. The sun is a type of the son (Jesus Christ). So, Jesus birth day was not on December 25th as some would have you think, it's actually in September. And, according to history, the birthday of December 25th is that of a pagan God. For further specifics see a book called "The Two Babylons" by Alexander Hislop.
2 Peter 1:14 Knowing that shortly I must put off this my tabernacle, even as our Lord Jesus Christ hath showed me.
As before mentioned, Peter is using the word "tabernacle" as a substitute for "body." Paul also uses that word when talking about the body. (See 2 Cor. 5:1,4.) In this verse, Peter is telling those that he is writing to, that he is going to die soon. Then he says, "as our Lord Jesus Christ hath showed me." Jesus told Peter how he was going to die in John 21:18,19.
2 Peter 1:15 Moreover I will endeavour that ye may be able after my decease to have these things always in remembrance.
Peter wants some people to remember some things after he dies. He calls them "these things." He says the same thing in verse 12. What are the things that Paul is talking about? It's probably the seven things that help a Christian to grow in verses 5, 6, and 7. Or it could be the things that he is about to tell us in the next verses.
2 Peter 1:16 For we have not followed cunningly devised fables, when we made known unto you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but were eyewitnesses of his majesty.
Peter tells those to whom he's writing that he didn't follow "fables." A fable is a made up story. And, the "power and coming of ... Christ" is not a fable. It's the truth.
Paul commands Christians not to follow fables in 1 Tim. 1:4 and 4:4; 2 Tim. 4:4 and Titus 1:14
2 Peter 1:17 For he received from God the Father honour and glory, when there came such a voice to him from the excellent glory, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.
The second word "he" refers to Jesus Christ. This verse says that he received honour and glory from God the Father when he said, "this is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased."
2 Peter 1:18 And this voice which came from heaven we heard, when we were with him in the holy mount.
Now Peter tells us that he heard God say this to Jesus on the "holy mount," which is the mount of Transfiguration. This account can be read in Matthew 17:1-6
There is also another place where God the Father says that Jesus is his beloved son in whom he is well pleased, and this is found in Matthew 3:17, and takes place at John's baptism.
2 Peter 1:19 We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts:
The "more sure word of prophecy" for a Christian is the word of God. It is true without error! Psalm 12:6,7 says that it is pure. Psalm 138:2 tells us that God's word is magnified above his very name! So, the Bible is not just sure, it's more sure. And, it's even more sure than a voice from heaven (verse 18).
Also in this verse, Paul mentions a "dark place" which spiritually applies to the church age. Then he uses the stars and the planets as an illustration of Christ and the church.
The light that shines in darkness would be the moon (a type of the church). The moon reflects light, and Jesus is the Light. Thus, the church is supposed to reflect Jesus Christ.
The "day star" of course is the bright and morning star himself - Jesus Christ (Rev. 22:16). When you trust Christ as your saviour, he comes into your heart. And, someday he's coming back at the rapture, and you'll rise with him. Finally, the "day" is the millenium. It will be a thousand years on this earth with Jesus Christ, the Light of the world!
2 Peter 1:20 Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation.
This is a great verse that Christians who do a lot of personal work need to memorize. While witnessing and soulwinning, I've heard people say many times, "Oh, that's just your interpretation. But, this verse says that no prophecy of scripture is of any private intepretation! The Bible interprets itself! Martin Luther used to say, "Solo Scriptura," which means scripture with scripture. The bible interprets itself.
Peter starts this verse by saying, "knowing this first." This is an important thing that all Christians need to know, and be taught. You'll remember from the introduction that 2 Peter is written to warn of false prophets and to help Christians grow in grace and in the knowledge of the word. This is an important verse because if a Christian knows it, then it is harder for a false prophet or a cult to deceive them. Most cults have a man (or woman) that use the bible, but they make the Bible say what they want it to say by taking a verse out of context, or by misinterpreting it. Peter says in 2 Peter 3:16 that they "wrest... the other scriptures, unto their own destruction." But, the Bible says that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation! It says what it means and means what it says.
2 Peter 1:21 For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost.
This verse says that holy men spake the prophecy or scriptures, but they were speaking what the Holy Ghost had them say. Nowadays, many "educated" people will say, "How do you know that God wrote the Bible?" Or "Man wrote that book." But, God says in this verse that men spake what God told them to say and it was written down. God is the author of the Bible, but he used man to write down what he wanted for them to know.
If you were to write a book on a type writer, you wouldn't say, "The typewriter wrote my book." No, you wrote it, and the typewriter was only the tool you used to do it. It's the same with the Bible. God is the author of the Bible, but he used man to write it down for him.
2nd Peter Chapter 2
2 Peter 2:1 But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction.
Here Peter begins to warn of false prophets. He says that they will come "privily" or privately. He also says that they will teach "heresy" or false doctrine, and they will deny Jesus Christ's death on the cross for their sins.
Here are several teachings of some false prophets:
1. They minimize sin.
2. They Humanize God
3. They Diefy Man
4. They teach Self Atonement
5. They say that there is no Hell and no Devil
Also notice the contrast between this verse and the one before it (1:21). That verse is talking about "holy men." Whereas this verse tells us about "false prophets." What does that tell you about false prophets? They are the opposite of God's prophets. Thus, they are unholy. This is seen in the next verse.
2 Peter 2:2 And many shall follow their pernicious ways; by reason of whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of.
The word "pernicious" means wicked. Peter says that these false teachers are wicked, but many shall follow them. It's a shame but it's true. People would rather believe a lie than the truth. These false prophets speak evil of the truth, but they do it in such a way that it sounds soothing to the listener, or it makes them feel good about themselves. The old saying is "The truth hurts." People don't like to be told that they are sinners, or that they are going to hell without Jesus Christ. They want to hear that they are good people, and that everything's okay. So, these false prophets lie to them and tell them that everthings fine. And because of this, these false prophets tend to get a crowd. But, God says their end is destruction according to verse 1.
In Matthew 7:13-15, Jesus also warns us about false prophets and those crowds that follow them. He says, "Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it. Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.
Like Peter, Jesus says that "many" will be the ones that go along with the false teachers. It's not always the majority that's right. When it comes to the truth the majority is usually wrong. This is especially true with religion. The majority is corrupt and going to hell.
2 Peter 2:3 And through covetousness shall they with feigned words make merchandise of you: whose judgment now of a long time lingereth not, and their damnation slumbereth not.
The word "merchandise" is a reference to money. This verse gives the motive of false prophets. It's not to help people, it's to make money! They are covetous. They want to get rich off of others, and they'll do what ever it takes to do so. Even if it means deceiving others, lying, or blashpheming. But, God says that their judment is coming.
Also, we see here that the way these false prophets get what they want is with "feigned" words. Paul says this about them Romans 16:18, "by good words and fair speeches [they] deceive the hearts of the simple."
2 Peter 2:4 For if God spared not the angels that sinned, but cast them down to hell, and delivered them into chains of darkness, to be reserved unto judgment;
Here we have some angels who sinned or fell. We call these "Fallen Angels." According to Genesis 6, they looked down upon the daughters of men, and desired them, and took them wives of whomsover they pleased. This sin of fornication produced Giants. You say, "Do you really believed that? How could angels come down and mate with women and make giants?"
You either believe it or you don't, but the Bible says that it happened in Genesis chapter 6. And, it's not to far fetched either when you realize that angels look like men! Read your Bible! Don't just take my word for it.
In Genesis 18, the angel of the Lord shows up with 2 other angels (Gen. 19:1), and they looked like men (Gen. 18:2). In Joshua 5:13-14, Joshua says he saw a man with a sword, and it turns out it was the angel of the Lord. Or how about Judges 13:6, where it says an angel came to Manoah's wife, and he looked like a man. The Bible clearly teaches that angels look like men! And, in Genesis chapter 6 the Bible tells us that some of these angels fell, and sinned with women.
This verse says that at some time, God "cast them down into hell," where these rebellious angels are today. 1 Peter 3:20 says it was because they were "disobedient."
This verse also says that they are "chained" up. This isn't a physical chain because angels are spirits (Heb. 1:14). No, these are spiritual chains. They are probably just like the chains that bind Satan (a spirit being) for a thousand years in the bottomless pit (Rev. 20:1-3).
The Bible tells us that God is not finished with these angels. Someday they will have to stand before God and be judged. This will probably take place during the Great White Throne of Judgment. And, Paul tells us (Christians) an interesting thing in 1 Cor. 6:3. He says, "Know ye not that we shall judge angels?" Could it be that we will judge these angels?
2 Peter 2:5 And spared not the old world, but saved Noah the eighth person, a preacher of righteousness, bringing in the flood upon the world of the ungodly;
Here Peter is talking about the flood from Genesis chapters 6-8. This was a universal flood that destroyed every man, woman, child, and beast upon the earth except for Noah and his family.
This verse also tells us that Noah was a preacher. Noah preached 120 years according to Gen. 6:3, and he didn't have one convert except for his family. Now, you preachers reading this commentary, when you get down and discouraged because you church isn't growing fast enought for you, or you're thinking of quitting, just remember old Noah, okay? He preached 120 years and was still faithful, and didn't quit. You have no excuse!
2 Peter 2:6 And turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrha into ashes condemned them with an overthrow, making them an ensample unto those that after should live ungodly;
An "ensample" is an example. Peter here is using an old testament story to get across a point. And, the point is the fierceness of God's judgment. The destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah was an example to the world of God's awesome power. And, of his wrath upon sin. But, Sodom and Gomorrah will seem like a bonfire compared to the punishment of Hell on all those that "after should live ungodly." If you're not saved, you'd better get saved, or you'll fry forever and suffer God's unmerciful wrath!
2 Peter 2:7 And delivered just Lot, vexed with the filthy conversation of the wicked:
In this verse, God called Lot "just." Even though he was living with sinners. And, the Bible tells us that their filty conversation (not just speech but way of life, see commentary of 1st Peter), was a vexation to Lot. He didn't like what they did, nor did he condone it, but he still didn't want to get out of the hog pen. Lot is a perfect type of a backsliden Christian. One that is "just" because of Christ, and righteous in God's eyes (vs 8), but still wanted to live in the world and to try to get along with it. Jesus said you are to be separate from the world ( 2 Cor. 6:17).
The verse also says that he was "vexed," or that he was afflicted or disturbed with their ways.
The most miserable person in this life is a worldly Christian. If a Christian lives for God, then the Devil is against him. If he lives for the Devil, God is against him. But, if he lives for both, both are against him. No wonder Lot was so vexed. He wanted to do right, and was "just" according to God, but he wasn't willing to give up the world, and sell out to God completely.
2 Peter 2:8 (For that righteous man dwelling among them, in seeing and hearing, vexed his righteous soul from day to day with their unlawful deeds;)
Lot saw with his eyes the wicked things that went on in Sodom everyday, and even though he knew it was wrong, he didn't have enough strength to get away from it. God help you if you are that way and backsliden. You'd better get right while you can, or you'll end up in a mess like Lot did. He lost all of his earthly belongings, his wife died, and he ended up fathering two bastard children from his own two daughters. The life of a backsliden Christian will always end up in a mess. The question is how big of a mess will it be? The sooner you repent and get right, the smaller the mess.
2 Peter 2:9 The Lord knoweth how to deliver the godly out of temptations, and to reserve the unjust unto the day of judgment to be punished:
God knows how to get a backsliden Christian right, and how to get him out of temptation. But, it's not always fun. Hebrews 12:6 says that it's by chastening. It's better to get right on your own, then for God to have to do it for you, by taking your wife, or your house, or your health, etc. Humble yourself now while you can, or else God will humble you himself.
This verse also says that God knows how to reserve the unjust until the day of judgment. Every lost person has a reservation already. That's a reservation to appear at the Great White Throne of Judgment, and be given sentence to be punished for all eternity in the Lake of Fire.
If you are lost, you'd better cancel your reservations, and make a new one in heaven!
2 Peter 2:10 But chiefly them that walk after the flesh in the lust of uncleanness, and despise government. Presumptuous are they, selfwilled, they are not afraid to speak evil of dignities.
The third word "them" is a reference to the "unjust" of verse 9, because this verse is a continuation of the one preceding it.
In this verse, we find some characteristics of the "unjust." They dispise "government." ("Government" in this verse refers to those that have power over you). They are also, presumptuous, selfwilled (independent), and speak evil of dignities ( they are murmerers, complainers, and gossips).
2 Peter 2:11 Whereas angels, which are greater in power and might, bring not railing accusation against them before the Lord.
The Bible here says that angels don't accuse people before the Lord. That's the devil's job. He's called "the accuser of the brethren," in Revelation 12:10.
2 Peter 2:12 But these, as natural brute beasts, made to be taken and destroyed, speak evil of the things that they understand not; and shall utterly perish in their own corruption;
Several things are in this verse worthy of comment. The "these" refers to the "ungodly" in verse 9. God says they are like "beasts" or wild animals because they are so overcome with sin and lust and vain imaginations. And, they speak evil of things they don't understand. In other words, instead of studying to find out the truth, they'd rather just lie, and gossip because they enjoy it. They have pleasure in wickedness.
The verse goes on further to say that they shall perish in their own corruption. A reference for this is Proverbs 11:5 which says, "...but the wicked shall fall by his own wickedness." Some other references are Psalm 9:16, and Psalm. 10:2.
2 Peter 2:13 And shall receive the reward of unrighteousness, as they that count it pleasure to riot in the day time. Spots they are and blemishes, sporting themselves with their own deceivings while they feast with you;
This verse is a continuation of verse 13. Not only shall they perish in their corruption, but they will also receive the reward of unrighteousness. This reward to an unsaved sinner would be death (Rom. 6:23) and hell (Ps. 9:17).
The verse goes on to say that "they count it pleasure to riot..." They take pleasure in sin. Heb. 11:25 says that sin is pleasureable, but that doesn't make it right. God says in Rev. 4:11 that all things were made "for his pleasure." Your main reason for living in this life is to please God! Are you doing it?
In this verse, Peter refers to unsaved people as "spots." This is an interesting word in the bible, because it usually has a tribulation reference, and applies to the mark of the beast. In the tribulation, a man must have a mark (or a spot) on his right hand or on his forehead (Rev. 13:16), in order to buy or sell. Leprosy in the Old Testament is a type of that mark.
Also, interesting is that the antichrist in Revelation 13 is a spotted animal like a leopard. Spots in the Bible also refer to an uncleaness.
2 Peter 2:14 Having eyes full of adultery, and that cannot cease from sin; beguiling unstable souls: an heart they have exercised with covetous practices; cursed children:
Notice these ungodly people have eyes "full of adultery," which shows that their thoughts are evil continually (Gen. 6:5). They aren't only commiting it, but they are thinking about it when they look. Sin begins with the eyes, then enters the mind and then the heart. The verse says, with their heart "they have exercised with covetous practices." Their heart is cold and hard. They don't care anymore about doing right.
Then the verse goes on to say that they "cannot cease from sin." They are so wrapped up in sin, that they can't quit. Prov. 5:22 likens it unto being bound up by a cord of sin, and not being able to break free.
Finally the verse ends with "cursed children." The children of these ungodly people are cursed because of the sins of their parents. They don't have much of a chance because they grow up learning from and watching their parents evil way, and most will probably end up doing the same things there parents did if not worse. This is the problem in America today.
These "cursed children" could also be a reference the "generation" that does right in thier own eyes. (See Proverbs. 30:11-14).
2 Peter 2:15 Which have forsaken the right way, and are gone astray, following the way of Balaam the son of Bosor, who loved the wages of unrighteousness;
They forsook "the right way" (the way of righteousness), and went "astray" after money (wages). The Bible says, "the love of money is the root of all evil" in 1 Tim. 6:10.
This verse shows a contrast. Instead of the right way, they chose "the way of Balaam," which is of course the wrong way. But, what is Balaam's way?
To find out, we'll need to go to Numbers chapter 22, where we find a story about a "prophet" (who turns out to be a false prophet), who was approached by a king named Balak. This king wanted him to curse the children of Israel, but God told Balaam that he couldn't curse Israel. When he told King Balak this, it made him very angry. So, Balaam told the king that he would tell him a way that the children of Israel would be cursed by God, if the king would only give him a certain sum. The king consented, and Balaam told him that God would curse Israel if they intermarried with the heathen. So, all that King Balak had to do was to have his women marry the Israelites and vice versa, and they would be cursed. Balaam got his money, but he sold God's people out. Thus, the way of Balaam is to sell God out for whatever makes you happy.
The story of Balaam is not only found in the Old Testament, but it shows up three places in the New Testament also. They are 2 Peter 2:15, Jude 1:11, and Rev. 2:14. Each time it shows up, God uses it as an example of something he hates.
The first time it's mentioned in the New Testament is in this verse. God tells us about the way of Balaam. The second occurance warns about the "error of Balaam," which was greed according to that verse. And, the last time we hear about Balaam, God warns us about "the doctrine of Balaam," which is defined as eating food sacrificed to idols and commiting fornication.
2 Peter 2:16 But was rebuked for his iniquity: the dumb ass speaking with man's voice forbad the madness of the prophet.
Not only was Balaam condemed for selling God out, he also didn't preach all the message that God told him to give. This is his iniquity in this verse, and God used an ass to speak to him, to try to get him right. It's funny because if you go back and read the story, Baalam is mad at his ass for the same reason that God is mad at him - because he's going somewhere that he doesn't want him to go. Then on top of that, Balaam wants to do to the ass what God wants to do to him. Balaam says, if I had a sword, I'd strike you with it. And, the angel of the Lord was there over him with a sword, but Balaam didn't see it.
In God's eyes, there was no difference between Balaam and the ass. And, what's even funnier is that the ass was smarter than Balaam was, because he saw the angel of the Lord and feared him.
2 Peter 2:17 These are wells without water, clouds that are carried with a tempest; to whom the mist of darkness is reserved for ever.
The word "these" refers to false prophets. They are wells without water. In other words they are good for nothing. You go to a well when your thirsty to get a drink, and when it's dry, it's no good. Jesus said you needed his water (the Holy Spirit). These false teachers can't satisfy you. They don't have the water of life (Rev. 21:6; 22:17)
2 Peter 2:18 For when they speak great swelling words of vanity, they allure through the lusts of the flesh, through much wantonness, those that were clean escaped from them who live in error.
This verse gives us the means by which these prophets decieve people. First they use "great swelling words." And, secondly they appeal (allure) to the flesh. These false teachers as the bible calls them, want people to think they are smart, and are good orators, so they give nice fancy messages, and say things that people want to hear to make them feel good about themselves. And, by doing so, they appeal to the wants and desires of the listener. They will usually say something like, "God wants to bless you today! But, to get that blessing, you need to send $20 to our ministry..." Or they'll say something like, "Just put your hand on the radio and let me pray for you. God wants to heal you today." or "For a love offering of just $25, we'll send you a free prayer shawl that you can wear and use to help you be healed..." or "God told me that I needed to get 8 million dollars or he would kill me... won't you give your money so God can keep me and this ministry alive?"
Have you ever heard such as that? I hope you weren't suckered in or dumb enough to send them the money. They just use it to buy new houses and new cars.
Now let's take a look at their use of words. The bible says they speak "great swelling words." In other words, they don't speak plain and to the point. They use double speak. They try to be non-offensive in hopes of not offending anyone. Here's some examples: instead of fornication, they say "adult consent." They don't call them faggots, sodomites, or sex perverts, they are "gays." Instead of giving, they say "sharing." Instead of prison, jail, or the slammer, to them it's "a correctional facility." It's not being born again, it's "giving your life to Christ." They don't say sin anymore, now you only commit an "error" or "mistake." They try to tone down the negative, and accentuate the positive. Here are some more examples of "great swelling words" that are being pushed on us nowadays.
coping and sharing
getting in touch with yourself
positive thought patterns
learning to live with yourself
inner personal potentialites
These are just some examples of "great swelling words." They are words that people use that mean absolutely nothing. But, it's "Politically Correct" to use these terms instead of telling it like it is. That's the spirit of this age. People speak as not to offend anyone. Instead, they want to appeal to the flesh.
Now, let's look at how a Chrisitan is supposed to speak. Paul had this to say about his speech in 1 Cor. 2:4. It was "not with enticing words of man's wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power." Paul wasn't interested in enticing or deceiving anyone. His only concern was that the truth was preached.
Paul didn't use any "great swelling words" during his preaching. In fact, the opposite is true. He was usually "rude in speech" ( 2 Cor. 11:6). And, some even said that his speech was "contemptible" according to 2 Cor. 10:10. Paul didn't speak to gratify man's flesh. He told things the way they were, and said it plain and to the point.
A lot of preachers in the Bible were rude and crude in their speech. Take Elijah for example. He made fun of the 400 prophets of Baal and called them names (1 Kings 18:27). How about John the Baptist, who stood up and told Herod that he was fornicating with his brother's wife. Or look at the life of Hosea, Isaiah, or Habakkuk. Most of the Old Testament Prophets when they preached were rude and crude in their preaching.
But, let's take Jesus Christ the greatest preacher of them all for an example. He made the Pharisee's so mad that they wanted to kill him. Why? Because he told them the truth. He didn't use "enticing" or "great swelling words" either. And, the Pharisee's hated him for it. If you tell the truth, you'll be hated. Paul says this best in Gal 4:16; "Am I therefore become your enemy, because I tell you the truth?"
Real preaching is not saying things to make people feel good about themselves, it's telling the truth. Now that doesn't mean that you are scream and yell and downgrade people on purpose because you're trying to make people mad and invoke a riot. Just preach the word and they'll get mad enough at you, believe me. The point is that preaching is not always making people feel good about themselves. That's the mark of a false prophet. Note what Paul says in Rom. 16:17,18 Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them. For they that are such serve not our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own belly; and by good words and fair speeches deceive the hearts of the simple.
It all boils down to the motive. False prophets and false teachers do what they do not because they love the person, but because they love money or fame or attention. A real preacher will tell you the truth because they love you, no matter how much it will hurt you, because they don't want you to be deceived.
A good verse for a child of God about what a real preacher is to do is found in 2 Tim. 4:2. It states, " Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine." This verse also shows us what a false prophet doesn't do. He doesn't preach the word, he doesn't reprove, rebuke, or exhort. His motive is not longsuffering, but dinero. And, he doesn't give heed to doctrine.
Finally, let's look at one more thing that separates a Christian's speech from that of a false teacher. Titus 2:15 tells a Christian he can speak, exhort, and rebuke with "authority." A false teacher has no authority but himself and his own opinion. A Christian's authority is God's word. It all hinges on authoriy.
In Matt. 7:29 we read something interesting about Jesus Christ. It says, "For he taught them as one having authority, and not as the scribes. The scribes were the Pharisees. They were the teachers of the law, but they were false teachers. They were the ones that crucified Jesus Christ. But, Jesus spoke with authority. Why? Because he had the truth, and he wasn't interested in anyone's pocket book. The scribes however did not care about truth. All they cared about was money. And, they told the people what they wanted to hear in order to get it. That's why they hated Christ because he told the people the truth; that they were a bunch of murderes, theives and hypocrites (John 8:44, Mark 11:17, and Matt. 23).
2 Peter 2:19 While they promise them liberty, they themselves are the servants of corruption: for of whom a man is overcome, of the same is he brought in bondage.
False prophets and teachers will promise you anything, just to get what they want. But, God promises many wonderful and precious promises in his book. Never trust in a man, trust in God. Romans 3:4 says, "let God be true, but every man a liar." Men will lie to you, but God cannot lie (Titus 1:2).
The verse goes on to say that these false teachers promise liberty, they are the slaves of sin (corruption). In other words, they say one thing, but do another. They are in bondage to sin. And, when a man is overcome by sin, he's in bondage to that sin.
2 Peter 2:20 For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, they are again entangled therein, and overcome, the latter end is worse with them than the beginning.
Notice the last part of the verse which says, "the latter end is worse with them than the beginning." Jesus said something similar to this in Matt. 12:44,45, while talking about a devil possesed person.
2 Peter 2:21 For it had been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than, after they have known it, to turn from the holy commandment delivered unto them.
Peter is saying that it's better for a person not to hear the way of salvation or "the way of righteousness" than to to hear it, and reject it. Then Peter tells us that they turn from the holy commandment. What is the holy commandment? Well, 1 John 3:23 we read, "And this is his commandment, That we should believe on the name of the his Son Jesus Christ... " You see, God is not willing that any should go to hell (2 Peter 3:9), that's why he died on the cross. And, he commands everyone everywhere, "Ye must be born again" (John 3:7).
Peter is saying it would be better for a person to not hear about Jesus Christ dying for their sins, then to hear it, and have to stand before God and give account of himself why he rejected it.
2 Peter 2:22 But it is happened unto them according to the true proverb, The dog is turned to his own vomit again; and the sow that was washed to her wallowing in the mire.
Here Peter likens an unsaved man unto a dog, and an unsaved woman unto a pig. Those are two of the dirtiest animals in the world. Pigs love to wallow in the mud, and dogs eat their own vomit. And, that's what God thinks of a person who rejects him. They go back to their sin. That's human nature. A man that rejects Jesus Christ usually does it because he enjoys his sin too much. He'd rather return to his old wicked sins and die and go to hell, than get saved. When you get saved you get (your sins) cleaned, and pigs and dogs don't like to be clean.
God likens man to animals several times in the bible in order to let man know what he is like in God's eyes. For instance God calls his disciples "sheep" in John chapter 10. Why? Well, there are many reasons. You should really do a study on sheep some time. But, I'll just mention one. God likens them to sheep, because sheep can't clean themselves. That's God's job. When you get saved, and trust Christ as your Saviour, the Good Shepherd cleans you with his precious blood! But, a pig and a dog don't want to be clean. They enjoy the mud, and the dirt, just like an unsaved man loves his sins. In Germany they think so lowly of pigs and dogs that the dirtiest name you can call someone in the German language is a swine hund. Which literally means "a pig dog."
2nd Peter Chapter 3
2 Peter 3:1 This second epistle, beloved, I now write unto you; in both which I stir up your pure minds by way of remembrance:
This verse tells to whom Peter is writing this letter.
It's to the "beloved." Who are they? They are Christians. The bible says you are to love the bretheren (1 John 3:14).
Peter then wants to stir them up to remember something. There are four times in this epistle when Peter uses the word "remberence." The references are 1:12, 1:13, 1:15, and here in this verse. Peter wants Christians to remember somethings.
2 Peter 3:2 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:
Peter appeals to Christians to remember the words of the prophets (the Old Testament) and the commandments of the apostles (the New Testament). What Peter wants them to know and remember is scripture.
2 Peter 3:3 Knowing this first, that there shall come in the last days scoffers, walking after their own lusts,
This is the second time Peter uses the expression, "knowing this first." The first time is in chapter 1 verse 20. In that verse he gives us something important. It's the foundation for a Christian if he's going to keep from being deceived by false teachers. It states that the Bible is not of any private interpretation, and that it is the final authority because it is the sure word of prophecy (1:19).
So, when he uses this expression again, we need to pay heed to it, because he's going to tell us something else that's very important. Also, he's going to give us a whole lot of doctrine from here on until the end of the chapter.
2 Peter 3:4 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.
Peter says in verse three that the context of this verse is "the last days." And, during this time, he tells us that "scoffers" shall come. This verse tells you what they will say. They'll be saying, "Where is the promise of his coming?" This is exactly what is happening today. If you do any witnessing at all, I'm sure you've heard people say, "I've heard that Jesus is coming back all my life, but he hasn't come back yet. Where is he?" That's someone who is a scoffer. And, this verse says that as we grow even closer to Christ's coming, we will hear people say this even more and more.
2 Peter 3:5 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:
Here's the kicker. They scoff, and walk after their own lusts (vs 3) because they are willingly ignorant. They don't want to know the truth. They are happy being ignorant. That's why Peter's appeal is to knowledge in this epistle. He wants Christians to study (2 Tim. 2:15), and know some things so they won't be ignorant. The old saying is "Ignorance is bliss." But, at the judgment, ignorance will be no excuse. The truth is everywhere, especially in America. Anyone who wants to can get a King James Bible just about anywhere. But, the problem is that people don't want the truth. That's why people are so easily lead astray by false prophets and teachers. Because they don't study and find out the truth for themselves.
Peter tells a Christian that he should study and know what the truth is, so he won't be deceived, and so that he can preach it!
In the context of the verse, Peter is saying that they are specifically ignorant of God's judgments on the earth. Verses 5, 6, and 7 are all one sentence. Together with verse 13, we learn that there are three different earths. First in verse 5 and 6, we have the earth "that then was." Peter also calls it the earth "of old." This is a reference to the Pre-Adamite earth. This is the earth before Gen. 1:1 and Gen. 1:2. Next, we have the earth that is "now" (vs7). That's the earth that we live on today. Finally, in verse 13, we have the earth that shall be or "the new heavens and new earth."
2 Peter 3:6 Whereby the world that then was, being overflowed with water, perished:
Some people say that this verse is a reference to Noah's flood. But, that can't be, and there are several reasons for that. First, Noah's flood did not cause the earth to perish. This is the same earth that Noah walked on before the flood. Noah's flood was only God's way of destroying sinful man. It didn't destroy the earth.
Secondly, verse 5 tells us that the the earth was "standing out of the water and in the water." During Noah's flood, how could the earth be in the water and out of the water at the same time. The Bible tells us in Genesis that the whole earth was covered during Noah' flood. So, this must be refering to something other that the diluge of that of Noah.
Finally, it cannot be Noah's flood because the verse calls it the "world that then was." We are still on the earth that Noah was on. So, this must refer to the world before Adam which existed sometime before Gen. 1:1 and Gen. 1:2. We call this the Gap Theory. Many do not believe this, but the Bible is clear that there was a civilization between Gen. 1:1 and Gen. 1:2. In Genesis chapter 1 and verse 1 the Bible tells us that God created the heavens and the earth. But, in verse two, the earth is without form and void. Why? because it had been destroyed. Let's look at some verses and see what happened in between Gen. 1:1 and Gen. 1:2.
First we must look at Isa. 14:12-14. I quote, "How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the
morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations! For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north: I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High."
This is an account of scripture that describes the fall of Lucifer. Now the first time Lucifer shows up in the Bible is in Genesis chapter 3. He is called a "serpent," and when he comes on the scene, and he has already fallen. So, he must have fallen sometime before Adam was created.
Ezekiel 28:12-19 sheds some more light on the subject. It tells us that Lucifer's sin was pride or envy. He didn't just want to be like God, he wanted to take God's place. But, God kicked him out of heaven. When he did, he probably destroyed the earth, and all the inhabitants thereof. We call this a Pre Adamic world. Then God recreated a new earth after Gen. 1:1.
One of the surest proofs that a Pre-Adamic civilazation existed is found in Gen. 1:28. Here, God tells Adam and Eve to "replenish" the earth. When you put the prefix "re" on something, it means to do it over again. So, there must have been a civilaztion here before if God told them to repopulate it again.
At any rate, we are on the earth now that Adam walked on as well as the one that Noah walked on both before and after the flood. But, someday this earth will be destroyed according to the verse to follow.
2 Peter 3:7 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.
The heavens and the earth which are "now" refers to the earth we live on today. And, it is "reserved" for destruction and demolition. God says he's going to destroy this world someday. And, his method of inihilation is by fire. God is going to burn it up. It's not going to be a little fire either. Verse 12 says that it is going to be "with fervent heat." The verse goes on to tell us that it'll be so hot that the "elements shall melt." Now that's a hot fire!
And, the reason God wants to destroy this earth is because it's no good! When God makes something, he makes it perfect, but when man gets a hold of it, he messes it up. And, according to God this earth is defiled by blood (Num. 35:33), by sin (Jer. 16:18), and by sodomy (Levi. 18:25). So, God is going to make a new earth someday according to Isaiah 65:17, and 66:22.
2 Peter 3:8 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.
Peter says if there is one thing I don't want you ignorant of, it is this: in God's eyes one day is a thousand years, and a thousand years is one day. Now if you read over that quickly, you might think that as far as time goes, to God a thousand years only seems like a day. But, this verse goes much deeper than that.
This verse gives us the length of time of history. Remember, one day is one thousand years. With this in mind, we need to go back to the book of Genesis. In the first two chapters, God created everything. And, he made it all in six days, and the seventh day he rested. That gives us 7 days, or seven thousand years.
From Adam to Jesus Christ is roughly 4000 years or four days. What happens on the fourth day in Genesis? Why on the forth day (Gen 1:15) God creates light. On the 4000th year, God sends Jesus Christ (the Light of the world.) On the fourth day, God also made the stars. Jesus Christ is the bright and morning star according to Revelation 22:16. Is that mere coincidence? Let's look farther. On the fifth day, in Gen. 1:20, God created life. Now look at that in comparison to the thousands of years, and you have Jesus coming to die for sinners to give them eternal life.
The seventh day, the day of rest will match the seventh thousand year of history, or what the Bible calls the millenium. A thousand year period where God reigns on earth.
Thus, the seven days of the literal creation line up exactly with the 7000 years of man's history. This is more than coincidence. This was God's plan!
2 Peter 3:9 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.
This verse has some good stuff in it. First, it says that God is not slack with his promises. When God says he'll do something, you can bet your soul on it that he'll do it! (For more comments on God's promises see 1:4, and 2:19 in this commentary).
This verse also talks about God's longsuffering. That's one of God's greatest attributes to us. God is all powerful. He could do what he wants when he wants. But, he sure has been longsuffering to put up with this world for almost 6000 years. He's sure been merciful to put up with all the sin, and wickedness going on in the world today. He sure was longsuffering to me before I got saved. I deserved to go to Hell for my wicked ungodly sins, but God was sure merciful to let me live until I got saved. And, I'm sure you can say the same thing about your life.
He sure was longsuffering on that old rugged cross being stripped naked, and spit upon, and ridiculed and mocked, when he could have called twelve legions of angels at any time and ended the whole mess. Yes God sure is longsuffering to sinful mankind. But, his longsufferingness is only applied to a lost sinner while he's alive. If he dies without Christ, God will no longer suffer him. The Bible says God will torment him and torture him with everlasting fire! Which do you want? He's longsufferingness, or his everlasting judgment in a lake of fire? If you aren't saved, you need take advantage of Christ's longsufferingness right now and trust him as your Saviour before it's too late!
This verse goes on to tells us that God is not willing that any should die and go to hell. What a verse! God is not willing for a lost man to go to hell even if he is. Now when Calvinists read their Bible, they don't read this verse. Because if they did, they wouldn't be Calvinists. They believe that God didn't die for everyone, but that he only died for the "elect." They call this stupid doctrine "Limited Atonement." They continue this foolishness by teaching that God elected some to everlasting life and some to everlasting damnation. However, that goes against the scriptures. According to them, God was willing that some perish. But, this verse says that God is not willing that "any" should perish, but that "all" should be saved! God wants everyone to get saved (1 Tim. 2:4), and when he died on the cross, he died for everyone (1 John 2:2, 1 Tim. 2:6, Heb. 2:9 etc.). It's not God's will for anyone to go to hell. And, if a soul dies without Christ and goes to hell, he is out of God's will!
2 Peter 3:10 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.
In this verse, Peter tells us about "the day of the Lord." This is always a reference to the 2nd Advent and the millenium in the Bible. The Old Testament Saints spoke more about it than anyone else, and every time they did, it was connected with vengence, and destruction. Some references are Isa. 2:12-17, Jer. 46:10, Ezekiel 39:6-11, Amos 5:18, Obadiah 1:15, Zephaniah 1:7-10, and Zecariah 14:19.
Several times it is connected with a battle (See Ezek. 13:4-6, and Joel 2). But, Peter and Paul aren't looking for the 2nd Advent, they are waiting for the rapture. So, the question is "Why did he say this." Well the answer is that there are two comings of the 1st advent, and 2 coming of the second advent. When Christ came the first time, he was born in a manger. Then after he died and rose again, he went to heaven, and then came back and walked with man forty day and forty nights on the earth (Acts 1:3). After which he descended up into heaven. Just as their are two parts of Christ's first coming, there are two parts are his second coming. The first part is what we call the rapture. That's what Paul told us to look for in Titus 2:13. The second part is Christ's coming at the Battle of Armageddon, when he comes with an army to set up the millenial Kingdom of Heaven. He'll rule and reign for a thousand years. After the millenium, the earth will be destroyed and a new heaven and new earth created (Read Revelation chapter 20 and 21).
In this verse, Peter tells us that Christ's coming will be like a thief in the night. Paul says this exact thing in 1 Thess. 5:2. However he adds this in verse 4, "But ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that that day should overtake you as a thief." The application here is to the rapture. Why does Christ come as a thief in the night? Because according to Revelation 3:20, Jesus Christ is standing at the door of the church trying to get in, but they have locked him out. So, like an old Southern Preacher said, "he'll have to go in a window." That's the way a thief comes in.
Now we know that this is the rapture, and not Armageddon because Rev. 1:7 says this about Armageddon, "Behold, he cometh with clouds; and every eye shall see him..." But, at the rapture he comes as a thief. This proves that the Day of the Lord is from the rapture, til the end of the millenium.
2 Peter 3:11 Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved, what manner of persons ought ye to be in all holy conversation and godliness,
Peter appeals to God's awesome power to make Christians want to live right. He gives the idea that if God is so powerful that he can destroy (dissolve) the entire earth, image what he could do to you if he wanted to. So, you better do right and live right!
Now a Christian can't lose his salvation. When he's saved, he's always saved. We call this "eternal security," and there are hundreds of verses in the Bible to prove it. Probably the greatest of these by far is John 1:12. When a person is saved, he is born again, and is a son of God. Just like you are a son or daughter of your earthly parents, a Christian is a son of God in heaven. And, you can never quit being your father's child. You could rip up your birth certificate, change your name, or even move half way around the world, but that still doesn't change the fact that that man whose seed you came from is still your father. Neither can you quit being a son of God when you sin. But, you can be disciplined. Hebrews 12:6 says, "For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth." Peter is saying in this verse that you had better live like a Christian, because God has an awful big paddle.
2 Peter 3:12 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?
Here Peter mentions "the day of God." What is the day of God? We saw what the day of the Lord is in verse 10. But, this is different. This is pure speculation, but maybe it is after the new heavens and new earth. And, maybe God will populate the universe with sinless people.
2 Peter 3:13 Nevertheless we, according to his promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness.
Here Peter tells us to look for the new heavens and the new earth. But, this comes after the millenium. And, Peter tells us when this earth is destroyed, and God makes a new one, it will be perfect and righteousness will dwell therein.
2 Peter 3:14 Wherefore, beloved, seeing that ye look for such things, be diligent that ye may be found of him in peace, without spot, and blameless.
Peter says when Christ comes, you need to be found doing right. Don't let God find you doing something wrong when he comes. Do right!
2 Peter 3:15 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;
Peter says that the longsuffering of our Lord is our salvation. God's longsuffering in waiting before he destroys the earth is the salvation of the world physically. But, sinners need to get saved spiritually as soon as possible, because God won't wait for ever.
2 Peter 3:16 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, as they do also the other scriptures, unto their own destruction.
Peter is writing about Paul's epistles in this verse, and he says that some of Paul's epistles are hard to understand. That's because God gave Paul more revelation on certain things than he did Peter. Paul for example was shown about the rapture, and the antichrist and many other things. Paul called these mysteries. And, Peter had a hard time understanding these things, because Peter was looking for Christ's immediate return to the earth to set up the millenial kingdom. Remember Peter didn't have the book of Revelation, so he didn't understand about a lot of things.
Below I'll list the seven mysteries in the New Testament for you to study.
1. The Blinding & Restoration of Israel (Rom. 11:25)
2. The Rapture (1 Cor. 15:51)
3. The Antichrist (2 Thess. 2:6-10)
4. The Body of Christ (Eph. 5:32)
5. The Indwelling of Christ (Col. 1:27
6. Mystery Babylon the Great (Rev. 17:5)
7. The Trinity and Incarnation (1 Tim. 3:16)
These are important to know and learn. If a Christian can learn all of these, it will greatly help his understanding and his Bible reading. It will open up the Bible more for him.
Peter then finished this verse by telling us that some people "wrest" or twist the scriptures unto their own destruction. These are the false teachers and false prophets that he warns of in chapter two. It's because they don't understand the bible.
2 Peter 3:17 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.
"Beloved" is a reference to Christians. This verse is Peter's last warning to Christians about false teachers. He tells us to "beware" of them, and their "error," which is a reference to their false doctrines in verse 16.
Peter says that he doesn't want to see any Christians fall. Paul doesn't want to see this either. Paul says the opposited in 1 Corinthian 16:13. he says, "Stand fast in the faith..."
2 Peter 3:18 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.
Peter's final plea to Christians is to grow in grace and in knowledge. Then, Paul's last recorded words before he dies are written here, as he gives glory to Jesus Christ.
This concludes our study of the second epistle of Simon Peter