This is now the second letter that I am writing to you, beloved. In both of them I am stirring up your sincere mind by way of reminder, that you should remember the predictions of the holy prophets and the commandment of the Lord and Savior through your apostles, knowing this first of all, that scoffers will come in the last days with scoffing, following their own sinful desires. They will say, “Where is the promise of his coming? For ever since the fathers fell asleep, all things are continuing as they were from the beginning of creation.” For they deliberately overlook this fact, that the heavens existed long ago, and the earth was formed out of water and through water by the word of God, and that by means of these the world that then existed was deluged with water and perished. But by the same word the heavens and earth that now exist are stored up for fire, being kept until the day of judgment and destruction of the ungodly, 2Pet 3:1-7.
Before we get to the meat of the matter, please notice the beginning of this little reminder Peter wrote. He wanted us to remember “the commandment of our Lord and Savior through your apostles.” Did you catch that? A lot of people out there insist on red letter editions not so the words of Jesus will be obvious to them, but so they can ignore anything in black and white. “Only the words of Jesus,” they say, are worth listening to. The apostles and their teaching do not matter.
Oh yes we do, Peter says. Where do you think you got those words of Jesus? We reported them to you. We wrote them. As Jesus Himself said (in red letters) “Teach them to observe all things I command you,” Matt 28:20. If you ignore the words of the apostles you are ignoring the words of Jesus, whether they are red or purple or blue with pink polka dots.
And his words continue on to remind us that God will indeed destroy this world. When? That we are not told, but do not, Peter says, forget it. Do not count God as unfaithful to His promise. The people in the time of the flood didn’t believe either. And they only had 120 years to wait.
But think of this: the Jews had been waiting for thousands of years. They waited through the times of the patriarchs—Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob and the growth of that family from one “only begotten son” to a clan of 70. They waited through the slavery in Egypt, about 400 years. They waited through the times of the Judges, another 350 or so. They waited through the united and divided kingdoms, another 400 plus or minus. Then they waited through a horrible destruction, captivity, and eventual restoration, and finally they waited through 400 years of absolute silence from God.
Yet the faithful were still looking when the Messiah came upon the scene. Some seem to have given up, but the Joseph and Marys, the Zacharias and Elizabeths, the Simeons and Annas, the Salomes and Zebedees, there were enough still waiting, still believing, to form that first church on Pentecost. And they found yet more.
We have been waiting about the same amount of time they did, and we have something more. We have the examples of promises fulfilled, from the flood, to the Abrahamic promises, to the coming of the Messiah. God kept all those promises and He will keep this last one.
Our unbelieving society will tell you it’s just a myth, it won’t happen, if it does, it will be man’s doing and not God’s. So go ahead and live your life as you please. You are not accountable to a mythological being who doesn’t really exist anyway. That is Satan talking. He will use every ruse in the book and making you feel foolish for your faith is just one of them. Don’t climb on the bandwagon with the rest of the world. God has given us evidence. Clear your mind and examine it.
You can be among the faithful few who still looked, who still hoped, who still dreamed of the day when their Lord would come in power and glory. They saw that Messiah come to earth, perform miracles, teach Divine truths as they had never been taught before, and rise from the dead. Don’t give up hope, Peter says. Remember all the times God kept His promises. Remind yourself often. It may be the most important rerun of a lesson you ever hear.
The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance. But the day of the Lord will come like a thief, and then the heavens will pass away with a roar, and the heavenly bodies will be burned up and dissolved, and the earth and the works that are done on it will be exposed, 2Pet 3:9-10.