Study of Peter: Day of Judgement

Questions for 2 Peter Chapter 2:

1. What does Peter say to those who say there will be no Second Coming?

2. What will happen on the "Day of the lord comes like a thief"?

3. What should we do while we wait for the "Day of Judgement"?

Answers to Questions:

Answer to Question 1:

The concept of the second-coming is central to Christianity. It is also important to understand that this second-coming is forever imminent, that it might happen at any time.

In Peter's day as in our day there were those who scoffed, "generations have passed since Christ said that he would return; he has not yet come. How can you still believe in his promise?" This is a question that must be answered.

Peter has a two-fold response. First he wants everyone to understand that the second-coming is not going to be a "picnic in the park". It is a time of judgement. It is only the mercy of God that forestalls that moment, giving every person another day, another hour, another minute to seek the good.

Second, God's concept of time is far different from our own. Peter says in verse 8, "There is no difference in the Lord's sight between one day and a thousand years; to him the two are the same."

The always imminent return of Jesus Christ is a truly elegant reminder for us all to keep Christ in our hearts at every moment. At the same time, it is also an ever-present admonishment to sinners, reminding them to consult their conscience in every act; for the moment of judgement is ever at hand.

Answer to Question 2:

Verse 10 begins a minor apocalypse where Peter describes what will happen "when the Day of the Lord comes like a thief". It is, indeed, a frightening vision, "On that day the heavens will disappear with a shrill noise...and the Earth with everything in it will vanish."

But this seeming horror is to make way for something better. As Peter notes in verse 13, "We wait for what God has promised: new heavens and a new Earth, where righteousness will be at home.

It will be like the flood that destroyed the Earth and left Noah a purged land.

Answer to Question 3:

Peter winds up his second letter by telling us, "to be on your guard, then, so that you will not be led away by the errors of lawless people...But continue to grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ."

Thus his instruction to us is both negative and positive. We should be on our "guard" rather like an army that guards its encampment from the enemy. Do not let the errors of others become our errors. Let us learn to be good by their bad example.

Even as we are on our guard, we must also be positive. It is an old military maxim that the best defense is a good offense. Thus, to save our souls, it is far better to act positively, to do good, and to keep learning how to be good. This is why Peter tells us to "continue to grow in grace and knowledge."

As he said so well earlier in his letter, the Christian is never perfect, he can always learn more about his faith, about himself and about his God.

Letters of Peter Home
Overview
1st Letter
- Chapter 1
- Chapter 2
- Chapter 3
- Chapter 4
- Chapter 5
2nd Letter
- Chapter 1
- Chapter 2
- Chapter 3

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