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Patience

2 Peter 3.15-17
And count the patience of our Lord as salvation, just as our beloved brother Paul also wrote to you according to the wisdom given him, as he does in all his letters when he speaks in them of these matters. There are some things in them that are hard to understand, which the ignorant and unstable twist to their own destruction, as they do the other Scriptures. You therefore, beloved, knowing this beforehand, take care that you are not carried away with the error of lawless people and lose your own stability.
And count the patience of our Lord as salvation. As the believers waited, perhaps impatiently, for the Lord’s return, Peter reminded them to bear in mind that the delay in the Lord’s return was an indication of His patience. The false teachers were attributing the delay to slackness, seeking to negate God’s promise. However, as Peter noted above, God “is patient toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance” (3.9). God’s patience means salvation for many more who will have the chance to respond to the gospel message. Perhaps you have a loved one or friend who has spurned the gospel. Don’t give up on them! This is still the day of salvation. Continue to pray that in the Lord’s patience they too will come to know Jesus as Savior and Lord.

Next Peter borrowed the authority of the apostle Paul for his emphasis by reminding us that Paul, in his writings, has made the same point. Peter observed that Paul's letters contain some things that are difficult to understand, but they still contain the same authority as the other Scriptures. Peter's point of contact with Paul's writings is simply this: all through Paul's letters he, too, challenges Christians to live godly lives in light of the day of the Lord. That much is not difficult to understand. It could not be missed unless deliberately. That is exactly what the false teachers have done. They have distorted or twisted the teaching of Paul along with other parts of the Scriptures. Primarily these teachers refused to submit their lifestyles to the scrutiny of Scripture but instead twisted the Scriptures in order to condone their sinful lifestyles. We must be careful that we don’t do the same thing. Rather let us live our lives in the light of Scripture no matter how countercultural it may be. Does your life reflect more of our culture’s values or God’s kingdom values?

Soli Deo Gloria,
Pastor Jeff
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