2 Peter 1-3
March 1, 2011
2 Peter 1:1-21
1:1 SIMON PETER, a servant and apostle (special messenger) of Jesus Christ, to those who have received (obtained an equal privilege of) like precious faith with ourselves in and through the righteousness of our God and Savior Jesus Christ:
1. Precious faith: Gr.isodimos pistis: of equal value or honor moral conviction, persuasion, the system of religious (gospel) truth itself.
2. With ourselves: God having given to you-believing Gentiles, the same faith and salvation which He had given to us-believing Jews.
3.Through the righteousness of God: Through His method of bringing a lost world, both Jews and Gentiles, to salvation by and through Jesus Christ impartially.
2 May grace (God's favor) and peace (which is perfect well-being, all necessary good, all spiritual prosperity, and freedom from fears and agitating passions and moral conflicts) be multiplied to you in [the full, personal, precise, and correct] knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord.
1. If we have a true knowledge of God and of Jesus as Lord & Savior, we may expect to have grace & peace conferred on us abundantly.
2. Peace: Gr. eirene: peace, prosperity.
3 For His divine power has bestowed upon us all things that [are requisite and suited] to life and godliness, through the [full, personal] knowledge of Him Who called us by and to His own glory and excellence (virtue).
1. A complete knowledge of the doctrines of the Gospel, and the power to preach and defend these doctrines.
2. Since they were in a suffering state, and probable many of them strangers in those places, we could ascertain that they didn’t have all things that pertained to life, and yet God worked in their behalf that none of them perished, either through lack of food or clothing.
a. As to what was necessary for godliness, they had that from the Gospel ministry, which it appears was still continued among them and they had the gifts of the Holy Spirit, and what was further necessary in the way of personal caution, comfort, and instruction, was supplied by means of these two letters.
4 By means of these He has bestowed on us His precious and exceedingly great promises, so that through them you may escape [by flight] from the moral decay (rottenness and corruption) that is in the world because of covetousness (lust and greed), and become sharers (partakers) of the divine nature.
1. By His own glorious power He has freely given us exceeding great and invaluable promises.
a. As He gave the promises to Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Moses, and the prophets, God also promises these Gentiles to protect, support, and save them.
2. Become partakers of the divine nature: The object of all God’s promises and dispensation of Christ was to bring fallen man back to the image of God, which he had lost.
a. Through Christ, we are saved from the corruption in principle and fact which is in the world; the source of which is lust.
b. Lust: Gr. epithumia: irregular, unreasonable, inordinate, and impure desire; desire to have, to do, and to be what God has prohibited, and what would be ruinous and destructive to us, were the desire to be granted.
3. Lust is the source from which all the corruption which is in the world springs; This destructive principle is to be rooted out; and love to God and man is to be implanted in its place.
5 For this very reason, adding your diligence [to the divine promises], employ every effort in exercising your faith to develop virtue (excellence, resolution, Christian energy), and in [exercising] virtue [develop] knowledge (intelligence),
1. Add to your faith virtue: Courage or fortitude, to enable you to profess the faith before men, in these times of persecution.
2. Knowledge: true wisdom; by which your faith will be increased, and your courage directed and preserved.
6 And in [exercising] knowledge [develop] self-control, and in [exercising] self-control [develop] steadfastness (patience, endurance), and in [exercising] steadfastness [develop] godliness (piety),
1. Temperance: self control: a proper and limited use of all earthly enjoyments, keeping every sense under proper restraints.
2. Patience: Bearing all trials and difficulties with an even mind, enduring in all, and persevering through all.
7 And in [exercising] godliness [develop] brotherly affection, and in [exercising] brotherly affection [develop] Christian love.
1. Brotherly kindness: Gr. Philadelphian: The strongest attachment to Christ’s flock; feeling each as a member of your own body.
2. Love: Gr. Agape: To love as God loves
8 For as these qualities are yours and increasingly abound in you, they will keep [you] from being idle or unfruitful unto the [full personal] knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed One).
1. He who is active, and consequently fruitful, will be ready at all times to acknowledge his Lord and Savior, by whom he has been brought into this state of salvation.
9 For whoever lacks these qualities is blind, [spiritually] shortsighted, seeing only what is near to him, and has become oblivious [to the fact] that he was cleansed from his old sins.
1. He, whether Jew or Gentile, who professes to have faith in God, and has not added to that faith: fortitude, knowledge, temperance, patience, godliness, brotherly kindness, and Godly love, is blind-his understanding is darkened, not able to look truth in the face, not to behold that God whom he once knew was reconciled to Him.
a. Thus he is willfully blind and has forgotten that he was purged from his old sins, and lost the evidence of things not seen; and is in danger of grieving the Holy Spirit.
b. Some go as far as to renounce Jesus Christ as having made atonement for them.
c. This can be the consequence of believers not continuing to be workers together with God, after they had experienced His pardoning love.
10 Because of this, brethren, be all the more solicitous and eager to make sure (to ratify, to strengthen, to make steadfast) your calling and election; for if you do this, you will never stumble or fall.
1. Seeing the danger of apostasy, and the fearful end of them who don’t obey the Gospel and who receive the grace of God in vain; give all diligence, hasten and be deeply careful to wotk with the most intense purpose of soul and mind.
2. If you are careful and diligent to work out your own salvation, through the grace which you have already received from God, you shall never stumble or fall and lose your peace and salvation.
3. We find, therefore, that those who do not do these things shall fall; and thus we see that there is nothing absolute and unconditional in their election.
4. Calling and election: Your being chosen, in consequence of obeying the heavenly calling, to be the people and church of God.
11 Thus there will be richly and abundantly provided for you entry into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
1. If you give diligence; and do not fall, an abundant, free, honorable, and triumphant entrance shall be ministered to you into the everlasting kingdom.
2. An allusion to the triumphs grated by the Romans to their generals who had distinguished themselves by putting an end to war, or doing some great military service to the state. (2 Cor 2:14)
12 So I intend always to remind you about these things, although indeed you know them and are firm in the truth that [you] now [hold].
1. He already wrote one letter, this is the second, and he intended to write more should he be spared.
2. Although they knew and were established in the present truth, yet he saw it necessary to bring these things frequently to their recollection.
13 I think it right, as long as I am in this tabernacle (tent, body), to stir you up by way of remembrance,
1. We see from this statement, that a man’s house is the place where he dwells, so the body is the house where the soul dwells; so as long as Peter is alive in this life, He will continue to remind them of these things.
14 Since I know that the laying aside of this body of mine will come speedily, as our Lord Jesus Christ made clear to me.
1. The Lord plainly told him that his death would take place when he should be old (Jn 21:18- 19): being aged now, he supposed that his departure was at hand.
15 Moreover, I will diligently endeavor [to see to it] that [even] after my departure (decease) you may be able at all times to call these things to mind.
1. Peter made sure that they would have these 2 letters in their possession.
16 For we were not following cleverly devised stories when we made known to you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ (the Messiah), but we were eyewitnesses of His majesty (grandeur, authority of sovereign power).
1. Cleverly invented stories: It is probable that he means those cunningly devised fables among the pagans, concerning the appearance of their gods on earth in human form.
2. To gain greater credit to these fables, the priests and statesmen instituted what they called the mysteries of the gods, in which the fabulous appearance of the gods was represented in mystic shows.
3. Peter says here that they saw the Lord Jesus, in his humanity, and also in his resurrected body, with their own eyes.
4. Peter says that we witnessed these things and therefore we can confidently say that neither you nor we have followed cunningly devised fables.
17 For when He was invested with honor and glory from God the Father and a voice was borne to Him by the [splendid] Majestic Glory [in the bright cloud that overshadowed Him, saying], This is My beloved Son in Whom I am well pleased and delight,
1. In His transfiguration, our Lord received from the Father honor in the voice that proclaimed that He was well pleased with His Son.
2. He received glory when his countenance was altered, for his face shown as the sun and his clothes were white and glistering whiter than snow.
18 We [actually] heard this voice borne out of heaven, for we were together with Him on the holy mountain.
1. Peter, James, and John heard the Father’s voice and saw this glory.
2. Jesus, who came to give a new law to mankind, appeared on this holy mount with splendor and great glory, as God did when He came on the holy mount, Sinai, to give the old law to Moses.
3. When the voice came from heave, This is my son, the beloved One, in whom I have delighted; hear him: the authority of the old law was taken away.
19 And we have the prophetic word [made] firmer still. You will do well to pay close attention to it as to a lamp shining in a dismal (squalid and dark) place, until the day breaks through [the gloom] and the Morning Star rises ( comes into being) in your hearts.
1. This event gave proof to the prophetic word spoken about the advent of the Messiah.
2. The prophecies are worthy of our close and careful study; and perhaps no study is more important to Christians than that of these prophecies.
3. The prophecies resemble a candle, lamp, or torch, in a dark room and they make objects distinct which were unseen before.
4. These prophecies do not give a perfect light, but they shed some light on objects which would otherwise be dark.
5. When Christ becomes real to our hearts, then we see clearly as we do in the full light of day.
20[Yet] first [you must] understand this, that no prophecy of Scripture is [a matter] of any personal or private or special interpretation (loosening, solving).
1. These principles that the prophets communicated were not of their own disclosure; that is, was not revealed or originated by them.
2. This refers not only to the prophecies recorded in the Scriptures, but also to any given in contemporary times; written, or given verbally.
21 For no prophecy ever originated because some man willed it [to do so — it never came by human impulse], but men spoke from God who were borne along (moved and impelled) by the Holy Spirit.
1. The ancient prophets did not even know the full meaning of what they wrote, but were carried beyond themselves by the influence of the Holy Spirit.
2. Ages later the fulfillment was to be absolute proof that the prediction was of God, and that no private invention, or human wisdom intervened, but only by the special revelation of the all- wise God.
3. This is sufficiently evident in all the prophecies which have been fulfilled, and we know that those that point to the future will definitely come to pass just as God has said.
2 Peter 2:1-22
2:1 BUT ALSO [in those days] there arose false prophets among the people, just as there will be false teachers among yourselves, who will subtly and stealthily introduce heretical doctrines (destructive heresies), even denying and disowning the Master Who bought them, bringing upon themselves swift destruction.
1. Secretly introduce destructive heresies: They would not at first make an open avowal of their doctrines, but would, in fact, while their teachings “seemed” to be in accordance with truth, covertly maintain opinions which would sap the very foundations of Christianity.
2. To lead in by the side of others: to lead in along with others. In other words they would bring in other doctrines along with or by the side of other doctrines which are true.
3. Destructive heresies: Heresies that will be followed by destruction; the Greek word is rendered “damnable,” is the same which in the close of the verse is rendered “perdition”.
4. False teachers attempt to bring divisions in the church; The particular doctrine in this case is that they “would deny the Lord that bought them.” (Doctrines which deny that God the father was the Author of the plan of redemption, and had caused them to be purchased or redeemed.)
5. Swift destruction: The apostle evidently believed that some would perish for whom Christ died.
2 And many will follow their immoral ways and lascivious doings; because of them the true Way will be maligned and defamed.
1. Shameful or immoral ways: Heresies of destruction or destruction opinions.
2. Lasciviousnesses: A sort of Antinomianism; they pampered and indulged the lusts of the flesh as did the Nicolaitans for they taught Israel to eat things sacrificed to idols, and to commit sexual immorality. Some early church leaders believed the Nicolaitans later became a Gnostic sect.
3. Nicolaitans were an early Christian heretical sect made up of followers of Nicolas. (Could this be the same deacon of Acts 6:5??????
4. Bring the way of truth into disrepute: These were persons who professed Christianity; and because they were called Christians and followed such abominable practices, the way of truth- the Christian religion, was blasphemed. Had they called themselves by any name but that of Christ, His religion would not have suffered.
3 And in their covetousness (lust, greed) they will exploit you with false (cunning) arguments. From of old the sentence [of condemnation] for them has not been idle; their destruction (eternal misery) has not been asleep.
1. Through covetousness, in their greed: that they might get money to spend upon their lusts with counterfeit tales, false narrations, of pretended facts, lying miracles, fabulous legends.
2. From the beginning God has condemned sin, and inflicted suitable punishments on transgressors; and has promised in His Word, from the earliest ages, to pour out his indignation on the wicked.
3. The punishment, so long ago predicted, shall fall on these impure and incorrigible sinners, is on its way and must soon overtake them.
4 For God did not [even] spare angels that sinned, but cast them into hell, delivering them to be kept there in pits of gloom till the judgment and their doom.
1. The apostle now proceeds to the proof of the proposition that these persons would be punished.
2. We need to remember that they had been, or were even then, professing Christians, though they had really, if not in form, apostatized from the faith (2 Peter 2:20-22).
3. He refers to the case of the angels that had revolted; neither their former dignity, nor their holiness, saved them from being thrust down to hell, (Tartarus) and if God punished them so severely, then false teachers could not hope to escape.
4. These “angels” referred to here point to that revolt in heaven, an event referred to in Jude 6 and everywhere implied in Scriptures.
5. If there are evil angels, no doubt there are evil men who must have fallen at some period from a state of holiness, for God had not created them wicked!!!
6. This word Tartarus occurs nowhere else in the New Testament, though it is common in the Classsicals writers. In Greek mythology it was the lower part, or abyss of Hades; It was regarded, commonly, as beneath the earth; and entered through the grave; as dark, dismal, gloomy, and as a place of punishment.
a. The ancient Greeks appear to have received, by tradition, an account of the punishment of the “fallen angels,” and of bad men after death; Tartarus was the place where the giants who rebelled against Jupiter, and the souls of the wicked were confined.
b. The rebellious titans were bound in penal chains; Homer in the Iliad introduces Jupiter threatening any of the gods who should presume to assist either the Greeks or the Trojans, that he should either come back wounded to heaven, or be sent to tartarus.
c. The old Latin poet Cicero refers to this place.
7. Gloomy dungeons: chains of darkness: They are confined in that dark prisonhouse as if by chains; spirits cannot be literally bound; but it was common to bind prisoners who were in dungeons, and the representation here is taken from that fact.
8. Held for judgment: (Jude 6) They will then, with the revolted inhabitants of this world be brought to trial for their crimes.
9. If God punished the angels who revolted from Him, it is a fair inference that He will punish wicked people, though they were once professors of religion.
5 And He spared not the ancient world, but preserved Noah, a preacher of righteousness, with seven other persons, when He brought a flood upon the world of ungodly [people]. [Gen 6-8; 1 Peter 3:20.]
1. If God cut off that wicked race, and thus showed that He would punish the guilty by that awful act of sweeping away the inhabitants of a world, He showed that people could not sin with impunity, and that the incorrigibly wicked must perish.
2. But, the righteous, however few in number, would be saved when the wicked were cut off.
6 And He condemned to ruin and extinction the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah, reducing them to ashes [and thus] set them forth as an example to those who would be ungodly; [Gen 19:24.]
1. This is the 3rd example to demonstrate that God will punish the wicked, (Jude 7)
7 And He rescued righteous Lot, greatly worn out and distressed by the wanton ways of the ungodly and lawless — [Gen 19:16,29.]
1. Lot preserved himself uncontaminated amidst the surrounding wickedness; as long as he lived in Sodom he maintained the character of an upright and holy man.
2. The corruption of Sodom was open and shameless, and as Lot was compelled to see much of it, his heart was pained, and the crimes of those around him he found it hard to bear with.
8 For that just man, living [there] among them, tortured his righteous soul every day with what he saw and heard of [their] unlawful and wicked deeds —
1. To see and hear what was going on, his soul was constantly troubled; seeing their open acts of depravity, and hearing their vile conversations.
2. Lot, after his departure from Abraham lived at Sodom for about 20 years.
9 Now if [all these things are true, then be sure] the Lord knows how to rescue the godly out of temptations and trials, and how to keep the ungodly under chastisement until the day of judgment and doom,
1. The preservation and deliverance of Lot gave the apostle occasion to remark that God saved righteous Lot while he destroyed the rebellious.
2. This shows us that the Godly man is not to be preserved from temptation, but that he will be preserved in temptation, and that he will be delivered out of it.
10 And particularly those who walk after the flesh and indulge in the lust of polluting passion and scorn and despise authority. Presumptuous [and] daring [self-willed and self-loving creatures]! They scoff at and revile dignitaries (glorious ones) without trembling,
1. These indulge in their carnal appetites and in polluted pleasures.
2. Despise authority: They regard all government in the state, the church, and family as evil; defenders of what they regard as the rights of injured man, and yet secretly themselves lusting for the exercise of the very power which they would deny to others.
3. These men despise and refuse to submit to God’s authority.
4. It is one of the effects of Christianity to produce respect for superiors; but when men are self- willed, and when they purpose to give indulgence to corrupt desires, it is natural for them to dislike all government, and to speak disrespectfully of those in authority, and attempt to throw off all the restraints of law.
11 Whereas [even] angels, though superior in might and power, do not bring a defaming charge against them before the Lord.
1. These Scriptures are almost identical to Jude 8-10.
2. The Holy angels who are represented as bringing an account of the actions of the fallen angels before the Lord in judgment, simply state the facts without exaggeration, and without permitting anything of a bitter, reviling, or railing spirit, to enter their accusations. Zech 3:1-2 (pg 153)
3. But, these persons, not only speak of the actions of men which they perceive to be wrong, but do it with innuendo and malevolence.
12 But these [people]! Like unreasoning beasts, mere creatures of instinct, born [only] to be captured and destroyed, railing at things of which they are ignorant, they shall utterly perish in their [own] corruption [in their destroying they shall surely be destroyed],
1. These are governed neither by reason or religion.
2. By blaspheming things they do not understand, they at last perish in their own corruption, (corrupt doctrines and vicious practices.)
13 Being destined to receive [punishment as] the reward of [their] unrighteousness [suffering wrong as the hire for their wrongdoing]. They count it a delight to revel in the daytime [living luxuriously and delicately]. They are blots and blemishes, reveling in their deceptions and carousing together [even] as they feast with you.
1. Most sinners practice their abominable pleasures in the secrecy of night, but these, indecent and shameful do it in the open day and they are a disgrace to the Christian name.
2. They form opinions which give license to sin, and then acting on those opinions.
3. It appears they held a kind of communion with the church, and attended sacred festivals, which they desecrated with their shameful conduct of riot and disorder.
4. If the Lord’s Supper was celebrated by them as it was at Corinth, that would furnish such as occasion; it would seem to be probable that a festival of some kind was connected with the observance of the Lord’s Supper. (1 Cor 11:21)
14 They have eyes full of harlotry, insatiable for sin. They beguile and bait and lure away unstable souls. Their hearts are trained in covetousness (lust, greed), [they are] children of a curse [exposed to cursing]!
1. They love and practice sin and the images of sinful acts were continually floating before their disordered and impure fancy; This figure of speech is very common in the Greek writers.
2. As adulterers seduce unwary, inexperienced women, so do those false teachers seduce those who are not established in righteousness.
3. They had exercised themselves until they were perfectly expert in all the arts of seduction and every kind of fraud.
4. These live under God’s curse here, and in the hereafter.
15 Forsaking the straight road they have gone astray; they have followed the way of Balaam [the son] of Beor, who loved the reward of wickedness. [Num 22:5,7.]
1. As Balaam did, who, although God showed him the right way, took one contrary to it, preferring the reward offered him by Balak to the blessing of God.
2. Balaam counseled the Moabites to give their most beautiful young women to the Israelite youth, that they might be enticed by them to commit idolatry.
16 But he was rebuked for his own transgression when a dumb beast of burden spoke with human voice and checked the prophet's madness. [Num 22:21-31.]
1. The original language says “the dumb ass, speaking with man’s voice”.
17 These are springs without water and mists driven along before a tempest, for whom is reserved forever the gloom of darkness.
1. These are teachers without ability to instruct; sowers that have no seed in their basket; nothing is more cheering in the deserts of the east to meet with a well of water, and nothing more distressing, when parched with thirst, than to meet with a well that contains no water.
2. In a time of great drought, to see clouds beginning to cover the face of the heavens raises the expectation of rain; to see it carried off by a sudden tempest is a dreary disappointment.
3. These will experience eternal separation from the presence of God; they shall be thrust into outer darkness, into the utmost degrees of misery and despair.
4. False and corrupt teachers will be sent into the lowest hell, and be the most downcast, underfoot vassals of perdition.
18 For uttering loud boasts of folly, they beguile and lure with lustful desires of the flesh those who are barely escaping from them who are wrongdoers.
1. These false teachers spoke of great and high things, and no doubt promised their disciples the greatest privileges, as they themselves pretended to a high degree of illumination; but they were all false and vain, and excited the desires of the flesh.
2. Those, who through hearing the doctrines of the Gospel, had been converted, were perverted by these false teachers.
19 They promise them liberty, when they themselves are the slaves of depravity and defilement — for by whatever anyone is made inferior or worse or is overcome, to that [person or thing] he is enslaved.
1. Their own conduct showed the falsity of their system; for they were slaves to every disgraceful lust.
2. The person who is overcome by his lusts is represented as being the slave of those lusts.
20 For if, after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through [the full, personal] knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, they again become entangled in them and are overcome, their last condition is worse [for them] than the first.
1. The world is here represented as one large, putrid marsh, or corrupt body, sending off its destructive disease everywhere and in every direction, so that no one can escape its contagion, and none can be healed of the great epidemic disease of sin, but by the might power of God.
2. If, after being healed, and escaped the death to which we were exposed, we get enveloped with them, it will be worse because we shall have sinned against more light, and the soul, by its conversion to God, having had all its powers greatly improved, to become repolluted, becomes more capable of sin than before.
21 For never to have obtained a [full, personal] knowledge of the way of righteousness would have been better for them than, having obtained [such knowledge], to turn back from the holy commandment which was [verbally] delivered to them.
1. Because of the reasons given above, because they have sinned against more mercy, are capable of more sin, and are liable to greater punishment.
2. The Holy Commandment: “Thou shall love the Lord thy God with all they heart, with all thy soul, with all they mind, and with all thy strength; and your neighbor as yourself”; Whoever obeys this great commandment, and this by the grace of Christ is possible to every man, is saved from sinning either against his God or against his neighbor; Nothing less that this does the Lord require.
22 There has befallen them the thing spoken of in the true proverb, The dog turns back to his own vomit, and, The sow is washed only to wallow again in the mire. [Prov 26:11.]
1. The poor sinner, having heard the Gospel of Christ, was led to loathe and reject his sin; and, on his application to God for mercy, was washed from his unrighteousness; but he is here represented as taking up again what he had before rejected, and defiling himself in that from which he had been cleansed.
2. This is a sad proof of the possibility of falling from grace, and from very high degrees of it also; They had escaped from the contagion of the world, they had true repentance, had been washed from all filthiness through the blood of the Lame, but went back into the mire of corruption.
3. How dangerous when the person has abandoned himself to his old sins. (Heb 6:4-6)
2 Pet 3:1-18
3:1 BELOVED, I am now writing you this second letter. In [both of] them I have stirred up your unsullied (sincere) mind by way of remembrance,
2 That you should recall the predictions of the holy (consecrated, dedicated) prophets and the commandment of the Lord and Savior [given] through your apostles (His special messengers).
1. In order to guard them against the influences of false teachers, he reminds them of the doctrines of the ancient prophets, and the instructions of the apostles, all founded on the same truths.
2. Possibly referring to the prophecies of Enoch mentioned by Jude in Jude 14-15 and Dan. 12:2, relative to the coming of our Lord to judgment; and he brings in the instructions of the apostles of Christ, by which they were directed how to prepare to meet their God.
3 To begin with, you must know and understand this, that scoffers (mockers) will come in the last days with scoffing, [people who] walk after their own fleshly desires
1. The Gospel of Jesus is pure and holy, and requires a holy heart and holy life, these mockers, who endeavor to turn Christianity into ridicule, follow their own lusts and finally convince themselves that Biblical truth is a forgery and thus their opposition to revealed truth began and ended in their own lusts.
2. Mockery is their spirit and temper; they have no desire to find out truth; they take up the Bible merely with the design of turning it into ridicule.
4 And say, Where is the promise of His coming? For since the forefathers fell asleep, all things have continued exactly as they did from the beginning of creation.
1. The false teachers and others referred to here believed in the eternity of the world: where the prophets and the apostles had foretold its destruction.
2. These unbelievers thought that if the world was to end, the terrestrial machine would have begun to show some symptoms of decay long ago, but nature continued as always, regular change of seasons, succession of day and night, etc. for many generations.
3. Since they didn’t see any of these changes, they presumed that there would be none, for they did not consider the power of the Almighty who can annihilate everything in a moment, as well as create. (They forgot that God once destroyed the world with water.)
4. The apostle combats this notion in the next verse.
5 For they willfully overlook and forget this [fact], that the heavens [came into] existence long ago by the word of God, and the earth also which was formed out of water and by means of water,
1. By the “command” of God the heavens and the earth were originally made, so by the same command they can be destroyed.
2. The heavens were formerly made, Gen 1:1. The word “heaven” in Scriptures sometimes refers to the atmosphere, sometimes to the starry worlds as they appear above us, and sometimes to the exalted place where God dwells.
3. Here, denoting the heavens as they “appear”, probable refers to the sun, moon, and stars.
4. Water entered materially into the formation of the earth, and that in its very origin there existed the means by which it was destroyed afterward.
5. At first there was a vast fluid, an immense unformed collection of materials, called “waters,” and from that the earth arose.
6. The expression “out of water” refers to the origin of the earth, it was formed “from,” or out of, that mass.
7. The expression “by water”, does not mean that the earth stood in the water in the sense that it was partly submerged; but that not only did the earth rise from that mass that is called “water” in Gen 1, but the mass called “water” was in fact the grand material out of which the earth was formed.
8. It was “through” or “by means of” that mass of mingled elements that the earth was made as it was, which therefore existed causes which ultimately resulted in the deluge.
9. The earth is surrounded with the atmosphere which contains all the vapors which belong to our globe, and without which we could neither have animal or vegetative life.
6 Through which the world that then [existed] was deluged with water and perished. [Gen 1:6-8; 7:11.]
1. The earth, which was formed originally of water, or a fluid substance, and which was suspended in the heavens-the atmosphere, enveloped with water, by means of which water it was preserved; yet, because of the wickedness of its inhabitants, was destroyed by those very same waters out of which it was originally made, and by which it subsisted.
7 But by the same word the present heavens and earth have been stored up (reserved) for fire, being kept until the day of judgment and destruction of the ungodly people.
1. The present earth and its atmosphere, which are liable to the same destruction, because the same means still exist (for there is still enough water to drown the earth, and there is enough sin to induce God to destroy it and its inhabitants), are kept in God’s storehouse, to be destroyed, not by water, but by fire at the day of judgment.
2. Those mockers are ignorant of the Mosaic account of formation of the earth, (those preaching evolution???) and its destruction by the flood, and yet they imply that all things continued as they were from the creation, and Peter calls them back to Mosaic account, to prove that this was false; for the ancient earth perished by the flood, and the present earth, should, at the day of judgment, perish by the fire of God’s wrath.
8 Nevertheless, do not let this one fact escape you, beloved, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years and a thousand years as one day. [Ps 90:4.]
1. All time is as nothing before Him, because in the presence as in the nature of God all is eternity; therefore nothing is long, nothing short, before Him; no lapse of ages impairs his purposes, nor does He wait to find a convenient time to execute those purposes.
2. When the longest period of time has passed by, it is but as a moment or indivisible point in comparison of eternity.
3. The ancient writer Plutarch said, “If we compare the time of life with eternity, we shall find no difference between long and short, for a thousand or ten thousand years are but a certain indefinite point, or rather the smallest part of a point.”
9 The Lord does not delay and is not tardy or slow about what He promises, according to some people's conception of slowness, but He is long-suffering (extraordinarily patient) toward you, not desiring that any should perish, but that all should turn to repentance.
1. In God’s long-suffering, his unwillingness that any should perish; he spared them; that they might have addition offers of grace, and be led to repentance, to implore God’s mercy, and find redemption through the blood of the lamb.
2. God is not willing that any should perish, and he is willing that all should come to repentance; consequently he has never devised or decreed the damnation of any man, nor has He rendered it impossible for any soul to be saved.
10 But the day of the Lord will come like a thief, and then the heavens will vanish (pass away) with a thunderous crash, and the [material] elements [of the universe] will be dissolved with fire, and the earth and the works that are upon it will be burned up.
1. The day of the Lord (Matt 24:42-43)
2. The heavens referred here is the whole atmosphere, in which all the terrestrial vapors are lodged; and as water is composed of 2 gases, 85 parts in weight oxygen, and fifteen of hydrogen, for if these 2 quantities are put together and several electric sparks pass through them, a chemical union takes place, and water is the product, (H2O); and, vice versa, if the galvanic spark be made to pass through water, a portion of the fluid is immediately decomposed into its two constituent gases, oxygen and hydrogen; and this electric or ethereal fire is that which, in all likelihood, God will use in the general destruction, the noise occasioned by the application of this fire is terrible in the extreme.
3. If you put a drop of water on an anvil, put a piece of red hot iron over it, strike it with a hammer, and the noise will be as loud as a gunshot; imagine this happening over the entire earth as every particle of water is reduced into its component gaseous part, the noise will be most terrific.
4. When the fire has decomposed the water, the elements, the hydrogen (which is highly flammable, (Remember the Hindenburg??) and oxygen (which supports all combustion) gases will occupy distinct regions of the atmosphere; hydrogen which is lighter goes to the top, and the oxygen to the bottom, close to the ground, and will accelerate combustion near the surface of the earth, all water and water vapor will be decomposed and burn up, (remember the earth is formed out of water and by water!!!) and the whole frame of nature will be necessarily torn in pieces, and thus the earth and all its works will be burned up.
11 Since all these things are thus in the process of being dissolved, what kind of person ought [each of] you to be [in the meanwhile] in consecrated and holy behavior and devout and godly qualities,
12 While you wait and earnestly long for (expect and hasten) the coming of the day of God by reason of which the flaming heavens will be dissolved, and the [material] elements [of the universe] will flare and melt with fire? [Isa 34:4.]
1. It was an ancient opinion among the pagans that the earth should be burnt up with fire.
2. It was a common opinion of the Stoics that, the moisture of the earth being consumed, the whole world would catch fire. The Epicurians and many other various authors held the same view; but it is remarkable that none believed that it will be destroyed by water.
3. The tradition, founded on the declaration of God, was against this; therefore it was not received.
4. The NIV uses “speed its coming”; we can’t accelerate the time, but the state of mind which is indicated by the word is that when we are anxiously desirous that of this time to occur, then we would accelerate it if we could; the true Christian does not dread the coming of that day, but looks forward to it as the period of his redemption, and would welcome, at any time, the return of his Lord & Savior.
13 But we look for new heavens and a new earth according to His promise, in which righteousness (uprightness, freedom from sin, and right standing with God) is to abide. [Isa 65:17; 66:22.]
1. The present state and order of things, shall be no more.
14 So, beloved, since you are expecting these things, be eager to be found by Him [at His coming] without spot or blemish and at peace [in serene confidence, free from fears and agitating passions and moral conflicts].
15 And consider that the long-suffering of our Lord [His slowness in avenging wrongs and judging the world] is salvation ( that which is conducive to the soul's safety), even as our beloved brother Paul also wrote to you according to the spiritual insight given him,
1. Conclude that the Lord’s song-suffering with the world is a proof that he designs men to be saved even as our beloved Paul wrote to the Ephesians (Eph 2:3-5), to the Colossians (Col 1;21), and to Timothy (1 Tim 2;3-4) things which imply that God’s bearing with sinners is intended for their salvation.
2. The persons to whom Peter’s letters were sent were, for the most part, Paul’s converts.
16 Speaking of this as he does in all of his letters. There are some things in those [epistles of Paul] that are difficult to understand, which the ignorant and unstable twist and misconstrue to their own utter destruction, just as [they distort and misinterpret] the rest of the Scriptures.
1. Speaking of these things: Christ’s coming to judgment, the resurrection of the dead, the burning of the earth, (2 Thesss 1:8), the heavenly country, (2 Cor 5:1-10), the introduction of the righteous into that country, (1 Thess 4;;17, Heb 4:9, 12:14-24), and the judgment of all mankind by Christ, (Rom 14:10)
2. Some of these things are difficult to understand, and from which a wrong or false meaning may be taken.
17 Let me warn you therefore, beloved, that knowing these things beforehand, you should be on your guard, lest you be carried away by the error of lawless and wicked [persons and] fall from your own [present] firm condition [your own steadfastness of mind].
18 But grow in grace (undeserved favor, spiritual strength) and recognition and knowledge and understanding of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ (the Messiah). To Him [be] glory (honor, majesty, and splendor) both now and to the day of eternity. Amen (so be it)!
1. So that you do not fall from that faith in Christ which has put you in possession of that grace which establishes the heart, because you have been forewarned by the prophets and apostles so be on guard, cling to God and the word of his grace.
2. Every grace and divine influence and the Word of God which you have received is a seed, and if it is watered will endlessly increase and multiply itself.
3. The life of a Christian is a growth; he is at first born of God, and is a little child; becomes a young man, and a father in Christ; every father was once on infant, and had he not grown, he would never have been a man.
4. An infant that does not grow, or grow daily, is sickly and soon dies; in the order of grace, those who do not grow up into Jesus Christ are sickly, and will soon die, die to all sense and influence of heavenly things.