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Pastor Scott L. Harris
Grace Bible Church, NY
February 21, 2010
Motivation for Maturity
How quickly things in life can happen and change. I wonder if you have given that idea much thought lately? Those of you with children in the house might think I am referring to their ability to clutter a clean house in under 10 seconds. If you turn your back on a young child, they can suddenly have something in their mouth that could make them choke. Even with older children, it only takes an instant for some childish or foolish action to take place and result in an injury. An accident can happen in the blink of an eye.
Several years before my dad retired he was driving his fully loaded utility truck on the outside lane of a four lane boulevard. There was a truck just to his left and slightly ahead of him as they crossing the intersection of another 4 lane road. When he regained consciousness, his truck was totaled, and he hanging upside down in the cab. A van had run the red light and just missed the other truck but crashed into my dad’s truck just behind his door. The truck had rolled and spun around before coming to rest on its back. My dad never saw the van until he managed to crawl out of the cab and was being treated by the paramedics. If he had been hit a little farther forward, he would not have been able to walk away if he had lived. Things can happen suddenly.
Even in the those things we know are going to happen, its seems like they happen suddenly. In life, it seems like only yesterday that you graduated from high school or college. It is hard to believe that those precious babies you held such a short time ago are already big. Some of them are now holding their own babies. Where did the time go? How did it all happen so suddenly? It seems like I blinked my eyes and a thousand yesterdays passed in a flash and suddenly it was today – gray hair and all.
There is a story that comes out of the Alaskan Gold Rush days. It seems that there was a prospecting party that had penetrated far into the interior of the country when they came upon a miner’s cabin. Everything around was as quite as the grave. Entering the shack, they found the skeletons of two men, and a large quantity of gold. On a rough table was a letter telling of their successful search for the precious metal. In their eagerness to get it, they did not pay attention to the early coming of winter in that northern land. Each day the gold was found in more abundance. However, one morning they awoke to find a great snowstorm upon them. For days the tempest raged cutting off all hope of escape. Their little store of food was soon exhausted, and they lay down and died amidst abounding gold! Their folly was not in finding the gold, but in neglecting to provide against the inevitable winter. We can imagine these two. Each day they minded more gold and would talk with each other about all the things they were going to do with their new found riches. All the while they were neglecting to make provision for the coming winter. In a real sense, we could say that they were immature. They lacked practicality. They either lacked discernment about the signs of the approaching winter, or they lacked the good sense to do something to prepare for it. Their immaturity lead to their deaths.
There is another season approaching. There is a time coming that will be unlike anything any of us have ever experienced. It will be a time that will be far beyond anything that has ever before occurred on the earth. The Apostle Peter both warns us about this coming day and call for us to be prepared for it. In 2 Peter 3:10 Peter warns us about the coming Day of the Lord and calls us to be ready for it.
Mockers and the Day of the Lord – 2 Peter 3:3-9
“But the day of the Lord will come like a thief, in which the heavens will pass away with a roar and the elements will be destroyed with intense heat, and the earth and its works will be burned up.” This is actually an expansion of verse 7 in which Peter warned, “But the present heavens and earth by His word are being reserved for fire, kept for the day of judgment and destruction of ungodly men.”
In our study last week of the many references to the day of the Lord found throughout the Bible, we found there were two main elements in it. The first is what Peter warns about here. It is a coming day of judgment on the wicked. HTML clipboard(See: The Day of the Lord) Here in 2 Peter 3 the apostle gives warning to believers about the mockers that will appear in the last days. These mockers are already present and they scoff at the promise of the Lord’s return. They believe that the promise of the return of the Lord Jesus Christ is just foolishness “because all continues just as it was from the beginning of creation” (v4). In following after their own lusts, these mockers fail to see the overwhelming abundance of evidence that God has judged the wickedness of mankind in the past through the Genesis flood. I have talked about that evidence for several weeks. They purposely ignore the evidence because they do not want to face the reality that the Lord will return someday and He will bring judgment upon all the wicked. HTML clipboard(See: Mockery in the Last Days, Part 1 & HTML clipboard Mockery in the Last Days, Part 2)
Even though the sinfulness of man is constantly provoking God’s wrath, we find that He is yet still forbearing. Our God patiently endures the provocation of evil men. Why? 2 Peter 3:9 tells us, “The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance.” The fact that the Lord has not already returned does not mean in anyway that He is being slow about fulfilling His promise to return. The fact that the Lord has not yet returned is the demonstration of His great patience with you and me and all people allowing time for yet one more sinner to repent, be forgiven and receive eternal life through faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.
The Lord has been forbearing to the present, but Peter is emphatic of the fact that He is coming back. Foolish people may scoff or sneer at His promise, but the Lord is coming back and they will have to face Him to be judged. Peter tells us in verses 10-13 about the suddenness of the Lord’s return and what will occur when He returns.
The Sudden Arrival of the Day of the Lord – 2 Peter 3:10
Verse 10 begins, “But the day of the Lord will come like a thief.” Several other passa
ges use the same analogy to describe His sudden return. In 1 Thessalonians 5:2 Paul says, “For you yourselves know full well that the day of the Lord will come just like a thief in the night.” The Lord Jesus Himself used the same phrase in Matthew 24:42-44 in His warning to be prepared. “Therefore be on the alert, for you do not know which day your Lord is coming. But be sure of this, that if the head of the house had known at what time of night the thief was coming, he would have been on the alert and would not have allowed his house to be broken into. For this reason you be ready too; for the Son of Man is coming at an hour when you do not think.”
The analogy of the day of the Lord coming “like a thief” describes it as coming suddenly and without immediate warning for that is how a thief comes. All of us know that there is always a possibility that our houses could be robbed, and so we do certain things to prepare for any attempt such as locking doors and windows when we are not present or at night when we are asleep. We also carry insurance in case a thief is successful in stealing from us. If there were a rash of thefts in our neighborhood we would even take greater precaution. However, no thief will send us an announcement that he will come by on Thursday at 3 AM to rob us for he knows that if we knew when he was coming we would be fully alert and prepared for him. A thief will come when you are not expecting him and when you are not prepared. That is the way in which Jesus said He would return. That is the manner in which the day of the Lord will come.
The call for us to be ready is an important one, for we have become so used to the patience of the Lord that we have a hard time thinking of God actually coming to judge. We might mentally assent that Jesus has promised to return some day and believe it to be true, but we do not believe it will be now. We don’t believe it will be today.
There is a story of a preacher in Scotland named McCheyne who once said to some of his friends, “Do you think Christ will come tonight?” One after another they said, “I think not.” When all had given this answer, he solemnly repeated the verse from Matthew, “For this reason you be ready too; for the Son of Man is coming at an hour when you do not think.”
Scripture teaches the imminent return of Christ. It is something forthcoming and impending. That is why so many Scriptures warn about it and call for us to be ready. Jesus told two parables in Matthew 25 to emphasize His warning in the previous chapter. In the parable of the Ten Virgins the five foolish ones are not prepared and so end up being shut out from the wedding feast. Jesus concluded, “Be on the alert then, for you do not know the day nor the hour.” In the parable of the talents the master went away for a long time but he did return and demand an account from his servants of their work. The one that was not prepared had the talent he was given taken away and he was thrown into the outer darkness.
In James 5 the Lord is described as being “near” (vs. 8) and that “the judge is standing right at the door” (vs. 9). The grammar here (a perfect active indicative) describes the action of drawing near and standing at the door before James wrote and continuing to stay near and stand at the door. While the coming of the Lord will be judgment on the ungodly and therefore they do not desire to see it happen, the opposite is true for believers. We find many scriptures calling on us to have an “eager” anticipation of His return including Romans 8:19,23 & 25; Philippians 3:20 and Hebrews 9:25. The word translated awaiting eagerly in 1 Corinthians 7:1,(apekdecomenou“ / apekdexomenous) means to have an “attitude of a burning expectation.” In 1 Thessalonians 1:10, the word translated as “wait” (anamenein / anamenein) means to “wait up for” as in one who waits up for someone to arrive late at night at an unspecified time. Since they could come at any moment you stay up waiting, otherwise you could go to bed and just get up to meet them at the set arrival time.
Both Paul and John had expectations that the Lord might return in their own lifetime. In 1 Corinthians 15:51 and 1 Thessalonians 4:17 Paul includes himself among those that could be alive, be changed and caught up to meet the Lord at His return. In 1 John 2:28 the apostle includes himself among those that could have confidence when the Lord appeared so that he would not shrink away in shame at His coming.
In Revelation 2:16; 3:11 & 22:7, 12 & 20 the Lord makes that statement, “I am coming quickly.” There is to be an expectation of His return that could be near. The grammar of the verb here (futuristic present middle indicative) is not “soon,” but “swiftly, all at once” before you could be aware and make preparations.
It is for all these reasons that we teach that Jesus could return any day at any time as directed by the Father. He could come back today. He could come back before I finish this sermon.
The Old Testament has similar statements regarding the day of the Lord even in those passages speaking of the future day of the Lord when He returns to judge the world. Isaiah 13:6, Ezekiel 30:3, Joel 3:14; Zephaniah 1:7 & 14 all speak of the day of the Lord being “near” with Zephaniah 1:14 adding that the great day of the Lord is “near and coming very quickly.”
Peter’s statement here in 2 Peter 3:10 that the day of the Lord is coming like a thief emphasizes that it will happen suddenly at a time you don’t think it will happen. It will happen just as suddenly as when my dad was hit by that van at a time when a car accident was far from his mind. The real question is whether you are you ready for Christ’s return? Are you ready for what will happen then?
What the Day of the Lord will Bring – 2 Peter 3:7, 1,12.
Peter already said in 3:7 that the present heavens and earth are “being reserved for fire, kept for the day of judgment and destruction of ungodly men.” Just as there was a lot of water kept in reserve for the judgment of the ungodly before the Genesis flood, so the world is currently kept in reserve for fire for an even greater judgment. Peter expands in verse 10 and tells us specifically that on that day the “heavens will pass away with a roar and the elements will be destroyed with intense heat, and the earth and its works will be burned up.” He repeats this in verse 12 saying, “. . . on account of which the heavens will be destroyed by burning, and the elements will melt with intense heat.”
Contrary to what Jehovah Witnesses teach, this earth is not going to last forever. It is going to be destroyed. Jesus Himself said in Matthew 24:34 that “heaven and earth will pass away, but My words shall not pass away.” Jesus did not say heaven and earth “could” or “may” or “might” pass away. He said they “will” pass away. Revelation 21:1 states it this way, “And I saw a new heaven and a new earth; for the first heaven and the first earth passed away, and there is no longer any sea.” Peter’s commentary here is simply a more detailed and graphic description about this “passing away” of the heavens and earth.
Peter says that the heavens will “pass away with a roar” (v 10) and that “the heavens will be destroyed by burning” (v 12). The term for the heavens to “pass away” (parercomai / parerchomai) is the same as used to refer to people that “pass away.” The time of their life on earth has passed by. The time of the existence of the present heavens will end and they will be destroyed by fire (v 12). When the Day of the Lord comes, what we now know as the heavens will be d
estroyed. They will no longer exist as we know them.
Peter says something similar will happen to the earth in verse 10. The earth itself and its works, its products, the things it produces, will also be destroyed. The word used here, katakaiw / katakaiÃ´, means to be “burned up.” The earth will be consumed by fire. Peter describes this further saying that the “elements will be destroyed with intense heat.” To emphasize the point, he repeats it again in verse 12 adding that the elements actually “melt with intense heat.” This is speaking of the elemental principles which make up the earth being destroyed by heat with temperatures so high that they will melt, thkw / takÃ´, meaning to “become liquid.” When the day of the Lord comes, things on the earth are going to get very hot! Nuclear physics now gives us an understanding of the reality of this situation and that the earth is ready for consumption by fire.
I hope you can understand clearly from the language that Peter is using that the day of the Lord is going to be a time of judgment, but that is just the reason the mockers want to avoid it. That is why they refuse to believe the evidence for Noah’s flood, because if they believed the flood, they would also have to believe that God is going to judge again, which Peter says will come this time by fire. This is the reason for Peter’s strong warning here. The Lord is coming back! The day of the Lord will come! Don’t become complacent because of the Lord’s great patience! Get ready for Him. He is coming back! Are you prepared? You who do not yet know the joy of salvation in Jesus Christ must repent! Those of you who do know Jesus Christ as your Lord and savior must become mature in how you live!
The Call to Maturity – 2 Peter 3:11-18
As I pointed out last week in our study of the Day of the Lord in other passages of Scripture, there will be many events that occur between the beginning of the day of the Lord and its culmination in the destruction of the present heavens and earth and the creation of new heavens and earth. Peter jumps from the beginning to its end in order to place even greater emphasis on warning unbelievers to repent and call for believers to live correctly.
Character & Conduct. Peter’s first call to believers in verse 11 concerns their character and manner of living. Peter says, “Since all of these things are to be destroyed in this way, what sort of people ought you to be in holy conduct and godliness, looking for and hastening the coming of the day of God, on account of which the heavens will be destroyed by burning, and the elements will melt with intense heat.” This is a very pragmatic question. If the things of this world are going to burn up, how should that affect the way you live your life? What kind of character and conduct should you have? Let’s consider a few practical questions to apply it to daily life.
1. What importance should be placed on the pursuit of material possessions? What difference does it make if you get the big house, the luxury car, the large bank account, the latest electronic gadgets, the fancy china, or whatever else strikes your fancy? All of it is going to burn! Jesus already said that if He would provide for our material needs if we would seek His kingdom and righteousness first (Matthew 6:33), so we do not need material possessions for security.
2. What is the benefit of working your way up the corporate ladder or becoming important in some social society? All corporations and social societies are going to end when the earth is destroyed. I am not suggesting it is wrong to be in position of power and influence, in fact it would be best for all of society if mature believes were in all those positions. I am calling you to think through your motives for the pursuit of those things. In Colossians 3:2 Paul calls on you to “set your mind on the things above, not on the things that are on earth” so that you will be “revealed with Him in glory.”
3. What is the real value of fame? Do the honors and accolades given by men have any real value? Is it worth the effort? Even if you do gain the fame you seek and you earn a spot in the history books, all those books will eventually burn. What then of your prestige? The honor received from the ungodly will not have any sway with God, and what do you give up to gain such honor from the unrighteous? Jesus rebuked the religious leaders of that time because they sought glory from one another instead of seeking glory from God (John 5:44).
Peter’s call to be holy in conduct and have a godly character is based in part that it would be futile to pursue things that will be destroyed anyway, but it is also based in the incentive of being part of the good that Jesus promises will come. The present heavens and earth will be destroyed, but verse 13 adds that, “according to His promise we are looking for new heavens and a new earth, in which righteousness dwells.” Every believer should be looking forward to the fulfillment of that promise. How wonderful it will be live where sin is vanquished and only righteousness dwells. We prepare for it by striving to be holy in conduct and godliness in the present.
Peter continues in his call to believers to be holy in conduct and character in verse 14 saying, “Therefore beloved, since you look for these things, be diligent to be found by Him in peace, spotless & blameless.” To be spotless is to be unstained by the sinful pursuits of the world. To be blameless is to be free from guilt. Such a person will be at peace. It only makes sense that in looking to the new heavens and the new earth in which righteousness dwells that we should respond by working on our character and manner of life in preparation for that rather than giving so much of our attention to the things of this life which are just going to burn up.
Understanding – 2 Peter 3:15-17: Another part of Peter’s call to maturity is the development of understanding. In verses 15-17 Peter tells us, “and regard the patience of our Lord to be salvation; just as also our beloved brother Paul, according to the wisdom given to him, wrote to you, as also in all his letters, speaking in them of these things, in which are some things hard to understand, which the untaught and unstable distort, as they do also the rest of the Scriptures, to their own destruction. You therefore, beloved, knowing this beforehand, be on your guard lest, being carried away by the error of unprincipled men, you fall from your own steadfastness.”
Christian maturity requires understanding. Peter begins with a call to understanding of the truth that the Lord’s patience is necessary for salvation. He restrains Himself and does not hastily revenge the wrongs He suffers at the hands of men. We must consider this and regard it as to our benefit, for it is because of the Lord’s patience that we were given time to repent and be saved, and it is what is necessary for others to have the time to realize their sinfulness, repent and also be saved.
Peter also calls us to understanding of what is taught in Scripture. Peter has said several times in his letter that he was not saying anything new but teaching what had already been taught by the prophets, the Lord and the apostles. Here in verse 16 Peter also affirms that Paul’s letters are also part of the Holy Scriptures. Remember that Peter had written to the believers in the five provinces of Asia Minor – modern day Turkey. Paul had previously written his epistles to the Ephesians, Colossians and Galatians who lived in the same areas as well as his personal letters to Timothy and Philemon.
We need to be students of the Bible and know what it says. At the same time we should realize that parts of it are hard to understand. Do
not be surprised that it does take some work to understand the Bible. Not only do we have to cross the language, culture and time barriers that separate us from what was originally written, but like those to whom these letters were first written we will struggle against our own sinful bent. We will find ourselves resistant at times to their call to live in holiness. We are limited creatures so we will have a hard time grasping the revelation the Scriptures give of our infinite God. We will have a hard time comprehending what is outside our experience. However, hard does not mean impossible to understand. By the means of diligent study and the teaching ministry of the Holy Spirit we can understand the Scriptures.
Christian maturity also requires understanding in order to be careful of false teachers. We have talked about them for quite awhile as we have been studying 2 Peter 2 & 3. Peter describes these false teachers here as untaught. They are ignorant, unstable, and that they distort the teachings of Scripture. “Distort” here, streblow / strebloÃ´, is an interesting word. It was used to refer to torturing someone by “twisting them.” Figuratively, it means to pervert, to torture, twist, distort language to a false sense and meaning. Christian maturity requires that we be careful of such men or we could be carried away by their errors. We stand in danger of having our thoughts twisted from the truth and falling into the same error as these ignorant, deluded men who operate outside of godly principles.
Christian maturity also requires us to understand Jesus Christ. Peter calls for us to “grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ” (verse 18). Peter expressed the same desire in his salutation in 1:2. We are to develop day by day more of the character of Christ in us. We should be more and more like Jesus as time goes by. We strive to be holy because He is holy (1 Peter 1:16). Peter also had said in chapter 1 that it was through the knowledge of Jesus that we find everything we need concerning life and godliness. No wonder then that he concludes with encouragement to continue to grow in the knowledge of Christ.
Peter’s call to maturity is not only a call for us to improve our character and to have and gain proper understanding, but it is also a call for us to keep the right purpose in mind.
Purpose: Peter ends his letter with a statement that covers the purpose of all creation. “To Him be the glory, both now and to the day of eternity.” All things were created by and for Jesus Christ (Colossians 1:16). There will be a day when all creatures will give glory to Him (Philippians 2:10,11). Jesus is worthy of glory with Revelation 5:12 revealing that all the host of heaven cry out, “Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power and riches and wisdom and might and honor and glory and blessing.” The glory of God and of His Son Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior is the purpose of creation. The mature Christian keeps that in mind, and by keeping this in mind, the Christian’s character and conduct will change too.
Peter ends the epistle the much the same way he started it. He wants us to be mature believers in Jesus Christ. He wants us to live life the way God meant for us to live it. God has already provided for us all that we need, but we have to do our part too. We have to believe what God says and trust Him for the future. That trust is put into practice when we obey Him.
God has also given us practical motivation for guarding ourselves from the temptations of the world and keeping on track with Him. Peter tells us that the Lord Jesus Christ will be true to His promise and He will return. When the Day of the Lord comes, it will come suddenly, and the heavens and the earth as we know them will be destroyed. In light of that, we should pursue a Godly character and we should seek to increase our understanding of God by Bible Study and be careful of being deceived by false teachers. Our focus and purpose of life is to glorify God and His Son, our Savior and Lord, Jesus Christ.
What do you believe is the purpose of your life? Are you living with eternity in mind? Will the fruit of your labor on this earth be burned up, or will it bring reward in heaven? (See: 1 Corinthians 3:12-15).
Out Of This Life
Out of this life I shall never take / Things of silver and gold I make.
All that I cherish and hoard away / After I leave, on the earth must stay.
Though I have toiled for a painting rare / To hang on my wall, I must leave it there.
Though I call it mine and I boast its worth / I must give it up when I quit the earth.
All that I gather and all that I keep, / I must leave behind when I fall asleep.
And I wonder often what I shall own / In that other life, when I pass alone.
What shall they find and what shall they see / In the soul that answers the call for me?
Shall the great Judge learn when my task is through / That the spirit had gathered some riches, too?
Or shall at the last it be mine to find / That all I had worked for I’d left behind?
Edgar A. Guest
Parents, you are responsible to apply God’s Word to your children’s lives. Here is some help. Young Children – draw a picture about something you hear during the sermon. Explain your picture(s) to your parents at lunch. Older Children – 1) Write down all the verses mentioned. 2) Count how many times the Lord is mentioned. 3) Talk with your parents about how you should live in view of the day of the Lord
THINK ABOUT IT!
Questions to consider in discussing the sermon with others. How quickly have you seen things in your life? Give an example. Are you ready for the future? What do the mockers scoff at? Why? What do they willingly ignore in their mocking? Describe the patience of the Lord. Why does He forbear with man? What does it mean that the day of the Lord will come like a thief? What other Scriptures use the same analogy? What is the point of the parables in Matthew 25: The parable of the Ten Virgins? The parable of the talents? What does James 5 tell us about the coming of the Lord? What does it mean that we should “eagerly” await the coming of the Lord (Rom. 8:19,23 & 25; Phil. 3:20 and Heb. 9:25)? What should our attitude be according to 1 Cor. 7:1? What were the expectations of John and Paul concerning the Lord’s return? How do the Old Testament passages that reference the future day of the Lord regard its proximity? Are you ready for the day of the Lord? What will happen to the present heavens and earth on that day? Describe. What will happen after that? What effect should these truths have on how you live in the present? What should change? What should the Christian’s attitude be toward material things? Positions of power? Fame? What does it mean to be blameless and spotless? How are you doing in those areas? What is the importance of the Lord’s patience to salvation? What does 2 Peter 3:16 tell us about the writings of Paul? What difficulties must be overcome to properly understand the Scriptures? What do false teachers do to the Scriptures? How do you keep yourself from falling under the influence of a false teacher? What is the purpose of all creation? How does your life fit within that purpose? What will happen to the fruit of your labor upon this earth?
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Sermon Notes – 2/21/2010
Motivation for Maturity, 2 Peter 3:10-18
Things in life can happen ____________
Are you ____________ for the coming Day of the Lord?
Mockers & the Day of the Lord – 2 Peter 3:3-9
Peter warns about the ____________ that will scoff at the promise of the Lord’s return
They purposely _____________the evidence of God’s judgment of man in the past – the Genesis flood
God patiently endures sinful man because He desires them to _________________
The Sudden Arrival of the Day of the Lord – 2 Peter 3:10
“Like a _____________” – cf. 1 Thess. 5:2; Matt. 24:42-44. Sudden arrival without immediate warning
Matthew _______ – Parable of the Ten Virgins and Parable of the Talents
James 5 – “the coming of the Lord is at hand” (vs. 8); “the judge is _________right at the door” (vs. 9)
We are to have “_________” anticipation of the Lord’s return: Rom. 8:19,23, 25; Phil. 3:20; Heb:9:25
1 Corinthians 7:1 – (apekdecomenouV / apekdexomenous) = “attitude of a _____________expectation.”
1 Thessalonians 1:10 – anamenein / anamenein) = “____________ for”
Revelation 2:16; 3:11 & 22:7, 12 & 20 the Lord states, “I am coming __________.”
What the Day of the Lord will Bring – 2 Peter 3:7, 1,12.
2 Peter 3:7 – Fire, judgment & destruction of the ____________
2 Peter 3:10 – Intense ____________will destroy the present heavens and earth.
Matthew 24:34 – heaven and earth will _____________
Revelation 21:1 – a ________ heaven and ________ earth for the first ones had passed away
katakaiw / katakaiÃ´ = to be “_________ up.” – vs. 10
thkw / t kÃ´, = “become liquid,” “_________” – vs. 12
The day of the Lord is going to be a time of ____________
The Call to Maturity – 2 Peter 3:11-18
Peter jumps from the beginning to the end in order emphasize the ___________and call to holy living
Character & Conduct. – 2 Peter 3:11-14
Since it will all burn, what manner of life should you live in the ____________?
What importance should be placed on the pursuit of _____________ possessions?
What is the purpose in gaining positions of __________or prestige?
What is the real value of ___________?
2 Peter 3:11-12 The _____________ of pursuing the things of this earth
2 Peter 3:13-14 The __________ of a new heaven and earth in which righteousness dwells
Spotless = unstained by _________ pursuits. Blameless = free from guilt
Understanding – 2 Peter 3:15-17
The Lord’s ____________ is necessary for salvation
Peter has only taught what had already been taught by the prophets, the __________or the apostles
Paul’s writings are part of the Holy _____________
The Bible can be ____to understand, but with diligent study and the Holy Spirit it can be understood
We must be careful of false teachers – they distort / _________ the Scriptures
We must continue to ____________ in the grace and knowledge of the Lord
Purpose – 2 Peter 3:18
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