2 Peter 3:14-18
Final Words 14 h Therefore, beloved, since you are waiting for these, be diligent to be found by him i without spot or j blemish, and k at peace. 15 And count l the patience of our Lord as salvation, just as m our beloved brother Paul also wrote to you n according to the wisdom given him, 16 as he does in all his letters when he speaks in them of these matters. o There are some things in them that are hard to understand, which the ignorant and unstable twist to their own destruction, p as they do the other Scriptures. 17 You therefore, beloved, q knowing this beforehand, r take care that you are not carried away with the error of lawless people and lose your own stability. 18 But s grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. t To him be the glory both now and to the day of u eternity. Amen.
2 Peter 3:14-18
14 Διό, ἀγαπητοί, ταῦτα προσδοκῶντες σπουδάσατε ἄσπιλοι καὶ ἀμώμητοι αὐτῷ εὑρεθῆναι ἐν εἰρήνῃ 15 καὶ τὴν τοῦ κυρίου ἡμῶν μακροθυμίαν σωτηρίαν ἡγεῖσθε, καθὼς καὶ ὁ ἀγαπητὸς ἡμῶν ἀδελφὸς Παῦλος κατὰ τὴν δοθεῖσαν αὐτῷ σοφίαν ἔγραψεν ὑμῖν, 16 ὡς καὶ ἐν πάσαις ταῖς ἐπιστολαῖς λαλῶν ἐν αὐταῖς περὶ τούτων, ἐν αἷς ἐστιν δυσνόητά τινα, ἃ οἱ ἀμαθεῖς καὶ ἀστήρικτοι στρεβλώσουσιν ὡς καὶ τὰς λοιπὰς γραφὰς πρὸς τὴν ἰδίαν αὐτῶν ἀπώλειαν. 17 Ὑμεῖς οὖν, ἀγαπητοί, προγινώσκοντες φυλάσσεσθε, ἵνα μὴ τῇ τῶν ἀθέσμων πλάνῃ συναπαχθέντες ἐκπέσητε τοῦ ἰδίου στηριγμοῦ, 18 αὐξάνετε δὲ ἐν χάριτι καὶ γνώσει τοῦ κυρίου ἡμῶν καὶ σωτῆρος Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ. αὐτῷ ἡ δόξα καὶ νῦν καὶ εἰς ἡμέραν αἰῶνος.
Grow in the grace and knowledge of Jesus Intro Distorted teaching leads to instability, and catastrophic pastoral consequences. S table vs unstable, a theme in the letter cf 1.12 , 2.14 The future is absolutely certain, and gloriously bright, so make every effort to be ready for it when it arrives. No such thing as 'neutral', treading water. The only way for the Christian is constant growth in grace and knowledge of Jesus. 1. Make every effort to live the new life in Christ together as we await his return (v14-15) v14 Waiting for these; connects to last week; since you are waiting for...the new heavens and the new earth. v14 be diligent - again Without spot or blemish. Shorthand for holiness, living the new life in Christ. v14 At peace; you plural - so to be at peace is not an inner peace, so much as a relational one; part of blameless Christian living. v15 Count the patience of our Lord as salvation: both comfort, and courage. Paul writing about patience - eg Romans 2.4 'Think of the Lord's patience as salvation' - like, this is the frame, the right interpretation, for the apparent delay in his return. Application directions: how will you be found by him? Blameless, and at peace? the Lord's patience is an opportunity for salvation - thus, evangelism. This Christmas yet another season of his mercy. 2. Don't distort the Scriptures and lose your stability, but grow in the grace and knowledge of Jesus (v16-18) Paul hard to understand v16 Twist, distort, 'rack' the Scriptures. 'Ignorant' in the Bible doesn't usually mean that they didn't know. Distortion (wrong emphasis) is a form of false teaching. Don't get carried away; keep stability. [Examples of distortion] This is an error, and leads to instability. DMLJ quotation; wrong emphasis ultimately just as dangerous as outright denial. The unstable twist the Scriptures; ultimately it is seen in their fruit Stability - to do with calibration. v18 What it means to grow in grace and knowledge of Jesus (the book is book-ended): To continue depending on his grace; To put on Jesus' virtues/excellencies as you depend on him; And in doing this in real life you learn more of Jesus himself; you grow in knowledge of him, not just about him. E.g., will you today trust Jesus for his grace? Will you put on Jesus' steadfastness/perseverance? In the face of things which are wearing you down? And in so doing you will know more of Jesus' own steadfastness, as you share in his life. This is why times of suffering actually prove to be glorious gifts for Jesus' people; since in those times we get a huge boost in growing in grace and knowledge of Jesus. Application directions: what stops us growing in grace and knowledge how can we help one another how can we avoid distorting the Scriptures what about different Christian traditions with different emphases? [highlight book, Finding the Right Hills to Die On ] God's glory . His patience means salvation. FCF . We distort and thus lose stability. This happened in the garden, when God's words were embellished for the first time. H1. Blatant denials and attacks. H2. Wrong emphases, ever so subtle. A love of particular principles and systems. This can happen inadvertently. a) One generation defends strongly a particular doctrine, formally. b) the next generation keeps that emphasis, though it is no longer a cultural battle. c) the next generation miscalibrates entirely in relation to the actual gospel. Person of Jesus. The patience of God, for salvation, in human flesh. He corrects the distortions of the Bible believers, and preaches the true, stable, gospel Work of Jesus . He dies at the hands of those who claim to uphold the word of God but actually have distorted it. Their ego, their sin nature, so bound up with being right and being able to defend their righteousness, that they would rather kill the Christ. Union with Jesus . In him I know the Father's patience. In him I have peace. In him I have stability. As I remain in him, I grow in grace and knowledge. Invitation . His patience means salvation. Confrontation . Stop distorting. Consolation . Keep going, make every effort to be pure and growing. Wrap up : Distorted teaching leads to instability, and catastrophic pastoral consequences. Stable vs unstable, a theme in the letter cf 1.12, 2.14 The future is absolutely certain, and gloriously bright, so make every effort to be ready for it when it arrives. No such thing as 'neutral', treading water. The only way for the Christian is constant growth in grace and knowledge of Jesus.