Text: 2 Peter 3:11-18
Theme: Peter’s final words summed up the focus of both his letters on guarding and growing.
Key verses: “Since everything around us is going to be destroyed like this, what holy and godly lives you should live, looking forward to the day of God and hurrying it along. On that day, he will set the heavens on fire, and the elements will melt away in the flames. But we are looking forward to the new heavens and new earth he has promised…And so, dear friends, while you are waiting for these things to happen, make every effort to be found living peaceful lives that are pure and blameless in his sight” (v. 11-14). “…So be on guard; then you will not be carried away by the errors of these wicked people and lose your own secure footing. Rather, you must grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ…” (v. 17b-18a).
What God said to me: Dwayne, never forget how much I love you. I love you so deeply that I gave my only Son to die for you. What’s more, I gave you my written Word from men like Peter, to guide you in the way you should go and correct you and remind you of what really matters in this life. I love you that much. As you come to the end of this year and this decade, be sure to take some time to write down highlights from these past days–the good, bad and ugly. What can you glean from the past to help you with your future? Peter said everything is going to be destroyed by fire one day. “The day of God” is coming fast upon you. But you can look beyond the devastation to the hope that lies beyond that, to the new heavens and new earth awaiting you. Here’s the question: Are you “making every effort” to live a peaceful, pure and blameless life? Are you seeking to bear much fruit in my name? Are you truly “on guard” 24/7 against doctrines, attitudes and subtle false assumptions and beliefs that could get you off course and misdirected? Are you making every effort to die to yourself daily and live only for me? If you search your heart, you will know the answers to these piercing questions are no. The negative side of what not to do is clear in these final words by Peter. But don’t miss the positive side too: Keep growing the grace and knowledge of my Son–your Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Never stop growing, Dwayne. Do justly, love mercy, and walk humbly with your God. See ye to it.
What I said to God: Thank You, precious, righteous King and Shepherd of our souls. I am forever grateful for Your mercy, love and justice. Your power knows no limits. The earth will be filled with the knowledge of Your glory as the waters cover the sea. You made the heavens and earth and all that is in them. You are King of kings and Lord of lords. Praise You for being the One and Only God. Thank You for all You’ve done in my life and ministry and family in the 2010’s. I look forward to reviewing some of those things over the next few days. What a privilege! Help me sell out to You completely in 2020–no holding anything back from You. Search me, O God, and know my heart. Try me and know my ways. See if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.