The Second Coming Of Jesus – A Certain Event
In second Peter we see Peter writing to encourage and motivate the followers of Christ – Christians – toward developing a Christ like character (chapter 1); We see then Peter warns of the dangers, and deception of false teachers and their demise (chapter 2); and in chapter three we see that he gives us some reasons for what seems as delay of the second coming of Jesus Christ.
The first reason Peter gives seems to be that there will be scoffers. Scoffers speak of the delay as evidence that the Lord is not coming. Some of these scoffers are those who improvise there teaching to fit with the delay they envision.
2 Peter 1-10
THE STIRRING OF THE PROPHET’S AND APOSTLES WRITINGS (vv. 1-2). I mentioned a few weeks ago in a sermon at Carr Lane Baptist Church that this “stirring” is similar to taking a pot of soup which needs stirred up to bring all the settled foods into balance with the rest of the ingredients. When you do that to a bowl of stew or soup you have a much better soup for your bowl.
This is somewhat similar to what Peter is stirring up for the followers of Jesus when he writes of stirring. There are many people, pastors and preachers who are getting away from the teachings of the prophets, prophecy, and the coming of the Lord teachings. Peter was stirring it up reminding us of His soon appearing. Are we failing our Lord and His calling in our lives if we shun to proclaim the prophecy of Scripture of the second coming of Jesus. Is it relevant for our day? Most certainly it is. Peter considered it relevant.
We should shun the words of the scoffers who will proclaim to us that “the second coming is when someone gets saved”; or ” the second coming is when a believer dies and Jesus comes to escort them home”; or “the second coming is only a spiritual metaphor for the church overcoming the world”. Anyway you get the idea. The second coming is in fact the bodily appearance of Jesus coming back with His saints, to Jerusalem, and setting up His kingdom; ruling and reigning on earth as King of kings, and Lord of lords.
THERE WILL BE THOSE WHO SCOFF AT THE PROMISE (vv. 3-7). Some scoffers are just out and out haters of the second coming idea. “It’s been said and taught for two thousand years. If it was going to happen it would have happened by now” is the thoughts and idea of many an unbeliever. Is that form of “scoffing any different that that the professing Christian may use when teaching the ideas presented in the above paragraph? The above Ideas only present a “christianized” thought of the scoffers.
“Where is the promise of His coming?” The promise is sure. It is my conviction, and one backed up by Scripture that just as surely as the first coming of Jesus was fulfilled and happened just as promised; so too will the second coming of Jesus be fulfilled just as promised. Just as Jesus came the first time born of a virgin (Isaiah 7:14), and is recorded in the New Testament as being fulfilled (Matthew 1:18-2:23); He will return with His saints to Jerusalem (Zechariah 14:1-5), and reign on the earth. It will happen in God’s good timing and fulfill His purposes and glory; not ours.
Just as Noah; while he was building the ark (Genesis 6:9-22); was preaching and warning of coming judgment by the flood. The many prophets warning Israel of God’s wrath upon sin should they refuse to turn from sin would surely come. So will the coming destruction by fire come about in God’s timing and for His glory. The world, the earth is being “Kept in store” for that great day, then the world “Will know that I am the LORD”, says our God.
THE LORD IS NOT SLACK IN HIS PROMISE AND CALLS FOR REPENTANCE (vv. 8-9). One thing we need to realize is that God is not delaying the return of His Son. He is not slack concerning His promise, the promise of Jesus “I will come again, and receive you unto myself…” (John 14:3) will be fulfilled just as He has promised.
God says “It will come” it is assured us, so we best be calling many to repentance and faith in Christ. This idea that is being presented by the Oprahites that God is in all people, we make our own destiny, life and such is a lie from hell. The only way to life, and life eternal is through the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
I guess you could say that another reason for the seeming delay is God’s “longsuffering” or patience. He is waiting for that moment in time when that final individual will be saved completing the Church. We do not know what day that will be, but we can know that it will be one great triumphant day. When it happens the events which take place in this world will be horrific, for those who are “earth dwellers”; loving the world and all that is in it. He is giving all who live and breath today a chance to repent, and be saved. He is not required to and does only because of His grace and mercy. All are in His hands of justice, righteousness, and holiness.
THE THIEF AND THE “DAY OF THE LORD”. “The day of the Lord” will be a day that will make the flood appear as a small and forgetful thing in comparison. It will be a day when the world will know that God is the LORD of all the earth and of all creation. The evolutionist will be in awe, and in their pride, unless they repent and believe, will be stricken and die in their rebellion.
We must remember, be reminded, that “the day of the Lord” is not restricted to a twenty four hour period but is most likely a time of judgment, and is probably equivalent to about 7 years. What ever length of time; whether it be 3.5 years or less; it will be sufficient time to rid the world of the leadership of Satan, his followers, and all evil.
The thief will come when no one is suspecting it. The thief will come when the lights are out most times. He/she may come when you are asleep. There are many sleeping today, unaware and unprepared for the coming of Jesus Christ. I have even heard some young believers say things like, “I don’t want Jesus to come yet. I want to have children and watch them grow up”. I am afraid that some with attitude either don’t know what they are saying, or don’t love the “appearing of our Lord”. Nothing can take the place of the coming of the Lord
Getting Ready/Being Ready For The Second Coming
In this final part of chapter two we see the need for preparing, being ready for when the Lord returns. Some accuse those of us who will teach and preach the second coming of Jesus as being relevant for the times. There could actually be nothing more relevant than getting people prepared for when Jesus comes again. The world is full of troubles and strife. People need to know Jesus; the end of troubles and strife for the world. He changes hearts and lives, strengthens us for the troubles we face on earth, and prepares us for eternity.
2 Peter 3:11-18)
KEEP LOOKING FOR THE NEW (vv. 11-13). In 2 Corinthians 5:17 we read, “Therefore if any man be in Christ he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold all things have become new”. Verse 10 above speaks of “elements melting with fervent heat” and things “dissolving”. That is the purpose of making all things new.
Individuals do not need to wait until the cosmos is changed. You and I can be changed by the power of the blood of Jesus Christ by our faith in Him, today. Yes! We look for that day when all things are made new in this world. However, when we have been made new through our faith in Jesus Christ the world takes on a different hue in our view anyway. We are changed. We are made new, then one day when Jesus comes again the world, the cosmos will also be changed and made new.
Note Peters question which is also a very clear statement as well. “What manner of persons ought ye to be…? This is Peter’s words for getting our lives on the “straight and narrow” and keeping them in the way; being prepared for the coming of Christ. Living so that others may see Him living within for His glory. The new heavens and new earth will be a place where there will be nothing but righteousness.
MAKE EVERY EFFORT TO BE AT PEACE WITH GOD (vv. 14-16). God has made the way for us to be at peace with Him. “Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God” (Romans 5:1). Our justification comes from God through the cross. He has made us just. Being just we have peace with God. Nothing takes that justness or peace away, however, when we get away from daily committing ourselves to God in His Word, and prayer we stand to lose the peace of mind that only He gives.
Keep in the peace that He gives by daily committing to the reading and study of His Word. Spend time in prayer, praising and adoring the One who died for your sins and His Father. “The peace of God which passes understanding shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:7)
Be at peace with the Word of God. When you twist it as those Peter writes about you cannot have peace with God. They and you twist it to your own destruction. The sad part about it is that others may follow your teaching and twisting. Any teaching that takes away from Jesus and glorifies man or his teaching is from hell.
STAND AGAINST ERROR (v. 17). There are many false teachers in the world today. Some of those profess Jesus Christ with their lips, but their lives and teaching show something completely different. Professing Jesus Christ these will give credibility to other beliefs for the access of heaven and God. Do they understand the atonement of Jesus Christ; His death, burial and resurrection? It really doesn’t seem likely that they do. They teach error, and those who fall for their lies will find themselves in hell on judgment day.
Those who teach anything other than Christ Jesus and Him crucified are deceiving the people. I mean this in the matter of salvation. Any who teach or preach apart from the Scriptures/the Bible are out of God’s will and not worthy of being heard.
THE GRACE AND KNOWLEDGE OF HIM FOR HIS GLORY (v. 18). It was the hearts desire for Peter that the followers of Jesus Christ grow in grace and knowledge of Him. When a baby is born we expect that baby to mature and grow. I have heard parents or some grandparents say things so silly sometimes like, “It’s too bad that they grow up”. They really don’t mean it; not if they stop to really think about what they said. A healthy baby will grow, and mature into an adult; and that is as it should be.
Peter, nor any pastor who is worth their salt, wants those who come to faith in Christ desire for them to stay an “infant” of faith. That is the reason for preaching and teaching. To motivate, encourage, feed, strengthen, and guide them into the proper food and eating for the life they live and for what is ahead for their lives.
The Lord’s “tarrying” in His coming is for our growth, and knowledge as well. He knows the right time, and I believe that time is set, and has been for all time and eternity. He knows the time, the day and the hour. Our task in life is to preach, teach, learn, grow, and be prepared, be ready; for the coming of the Lord is nearer than when we first believed.
The time and day will come, and He will come fulfilling His promise.
-Tim A. Blankenship
These are sermon study notes I will be preaching at Carr Lane Baptist Church on Sunday October 18, 2009 morning and evening services.