Sunday March 6th
The Second of Peter
1). 2Pe 3:1 ? Beloved, I now write to you this second epistle (in both of which I stir up your pure minds by way of reminder), 2 that you may be mindful of the words which were spoken before by the holy prophets, and of the commandment of us, the apostles of the Lord and Savior, 3 ? knowing this first: that scoffers will come in the last days, walking according to their own lusts, 4 and saying, "Where is the promise of His coming? For since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning of creation."
a). The challenge that is presented to the very foundational structure of scripture found in Genesis Chapters 1 and 2, that of 6 days of work followed by a 7th Day of rest in which a Man and a Woman in a marriage relationship will have dominion over the earth, by the ?scoffers? is the pinnacle of the work of the leaven that was placed in the 3 measures of meal at the beginning of the dispensation and must be seen within the context of the false teaching and the false teachers that have been Peter?s subject in this his second letter - 2Pe 2:1 ? But there were also false prophets among the people, even as there will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies, even denying the Lord who bought them, and bring on themselves swift destruction. 2 And many will follow their destructive ways, because of whom the way of truth will be blasphemed. 3 ? By covetousness they will exploit you with deceptive words;
b). And interestingly enough the word translated ?deceptive? here is the Greek word ?plastos? which means to mold, to shape, to fabricate.
c). And in this we can see a parallel with the molding of the golden calf in Exodus Chapter 32, where ?God? was fashioned to fulfill the desires of the people after the image of the world they were supposed to have left behind ? exactly what we would see taking place in the church at large today.
2). Now as we saw last time the heavens and the earth were created perfectly, as recorded in Genesis 1:1and corroborated in - Isa 45:18 For thus says the LORD, Who created the heavens, Who is God, Who formed the earth and made it, Who has established it, Who did not create it in vain,
a). And subsequent to this creation, as a result of Satan?s rebellion, the heavens and the earth became formless and void as recorded in Genesis 1:2a.
This ruin was then followed by a restoration process that lasted for six days, followed by a seventh day of rest.
b). Thus forming an unalterable pattern ? creation / ruin / restoration / rest ? six days of work / a seventh day of rest.
3). We will also remember that this pattern was set in motion, ?in beginning? for the purpose of rulership over the earth by God?s Son and His Bride during the 7th Day - Mt 25:34 "Then the King will say to those on His right hand, 'Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world:
a). And with this purpose in view we come to the event recorded in - Ge 1:26 ? Then God said, "Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth."
b). Man, however, we will remember, was disqualified to rule before ever taking the scepter of rulership as a result of Satan deceiving the Woman, but the Divine pattern had already been set ? creation, ruin, restoration, rest.
4). All of this however has been willfully forgotten by the scoffers ?
2Pe 3:5 For this they willfully forget: that by the word of God the heavens were of old, and the earth standing out of water and in the water, 6 by which the world that then existed perished, being flooded with water. 7 But the heavens and the earth which are now preserved by the same word, are reserved for fire until the day of judgment and perdition of ungodly men.
a). They have chosen to willfully forget God?s intervention that brought judgment on Satan?s sin resulting in a ruined creation.
b). They have chosen to willfully forget God?s intervention through the process of restoring that which was ruined within an unalterable pattern,
instead making the claim that ?all things continue as they were from the beginning of creation?.
c). All things though have clearly not continued as they were from the beginning of creation ? nor will they continue as they are at present ? And you can hear in the scoffers? message the echo of the age-old deception ?
Ge 3:1??.Has God indeed said,??..
d). And an echo of the world before the flood of Noah?s day ?
Mt 24:38 "For as in the days before the flood, they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark,
5). The scoffers have willfully forgotten that God has set about a process of restoring His ruined creation, Man, and the earth placed under a curse ? a process that must follow the pattern of six days of work followed by a seventh day of rest, the perfect pattern that has already been established.
6). Just as the scoffers have willfully forgotten these things, so Peter?s readers had begun to overlook something that he did not want them to lose sight of - 2Pe 3:8 ? But, beloved, do not forget this one thing, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. 9 ? The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.
a). They were and we are to keep in the forefront of our minds that each day seen in Genesis Chapter 1 will be as 1000 years giving us a period of 6000 years and the 1000 years that follow will be as one day ? the 7th Day, the Day of Rest ? that which we know as the Millennial Kingdom of Christ.
b). Heb 4:1 ? Therefore, since a promise remains of entering His rest, let us fear lest any of you seem to have come short of it.
c). Heb 4:9 There remains therefore a rest for the people of God.
d). And we need to keep this in the forefront of our minds because of what Peter goes on to say in v9 - the word translated ?slack? implies, besides delay, the idea of lateness with respect to an appointed time ? the scoffers declare that God has not kept His promise, but the Holy Spirit declares that the Lord is not slack, but is rather ?longsuffering? toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance - 2Pe 3:15 and consider that the longsuffering of our Lord is salvation
e). And contextually this is repentance with regards to the salvation of the soul rather than the free gift of eternal life.
f). And during the time of waiting for His return we are to exercise patient endurance faithfully following His commands to us - Lu 19:13 "So he called ten of his servants, delivered to them ten minas, and said to them, 'Do business till I come.'
g). Mr 13:33 "Take heed, watch and pray; for you do not know when the time is.
7). Now Biblical prophecy also takes us beyond the seventh day showing another intervention by God that has consequences that parallel the events of
Ge 1:2 The earth was without form, and void; and darkness was on the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters.
8). This is what we find in - 1Co 15:24 Then comes the end, when He delivers the kingdom to God the Father, when He puts an end to all rule and all authority and power. 25 For He must reign till He has put all enemies under His feet. 26 The last enemy that will be destroyed is death.
a). At the conclusion of the Seventh Day ? ?then comes the end? - God the Son will deliver the Kingdom to God the Father, having put an end to all rule and all authority and power - Ps 2:9 You shall break them with a rod of iron; You shall dash them to pieces like a potter's vessel.'"
b). And at this point death itself is destroyed - Re 20:14 Then Death and Hades were cast into the lake of fire.
c). Now this is hugely significant as death is always the consequence of sin - Ro 6:23 For the wages of sin is death,
d). And so the destruction of death denotes the final eradication of sin for all eternity following the events of the Great White Throne judgment.
9). 2 Peter 3:7 But the heavens and the earth which are now preserved by the same word, are reserved for fire until the day of judgment and perdition of ungodly men.
a). The heavens and the earth which are now ? the heavens and the earth which are restored in Genesis 1:2b onwards are reserved for fire at the end of the 7th Day.
b). 2Pe 3:10 But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night, in which the heavens will pass away with a great noise, and the elements will melt with fervent heat; both the earth and the works that are in it will be burned up.11 ? Therefore, since all these things will be dissolved, what manner of persons ought you to be in holy conduct and godliness, 12 looking for and hastening the coming of the day of God, because of which the heavens will be dissolved, being on fire, and the elements will melt with fervent heat?
c). This destruction at the conclusion of the Millennial Kingdom is of both the heavens and the earth which now are, and is a parallel to the destruction of the world which then existed recorded in Genesis 1:2a.
d). And just as there was a new beginning in Genesis 1:2b.
so at this point, at the end of the Millennial Kingdom, there will be a new beginning marking the start of ?the day of God? ? the first of the endless ages of eternity.
e). 2Pe 3:13 Nevertheless we, according to His promise, look for new heavens and a new earth in which righteousness dwells.
f). Isa 65:17 ? "For behold, I create new heavens and a new earth; And the former shall not be remembered or come to mind.
g). Re 21:1 ? Now I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away. Also there was no more sea.
h). Not only then do the scoffers willfully forget Biblical history in relation to the heavens and earth ?of old?, but they also willfully forget Biblical history and Biblical prophecy concerning ?the heavens and the earth which are now?.
i). Both Biblical history and Biblical prophecy are absolutely certain.
10). So why is the present world destined for fire and not flood as we saw in Genesis and how would this fit with Biblical prophecy?
a). The simple answer is because of the covenant God made with Noah ? Ge 9:8 ? Then God spoke to Noah and to his sons with him, saying: 9 "And as for Me, behold, I establish My covenant with you and with your descendants after you, 10 "and with every living creature that is with you: the birds, the cattle, and every beast of the earth with you, of all that go out of the ark, every beast of the earth. 11 "Thus I establish My covenant with you: Never again shall all flesh be cut off by the waters of the flood; never again shall there be a flood to destroy the earth." 12 ? And God said: "This is the sign of the covenant which I make between Me and you, and every living creature that is with you, for perpetual generations: 13 "I set My rainbow in the cloud, and it shall be for the sign of the covenant between Me and the earth.
b). And this account of God?s dealing with Noah brings us nicely to another significant section of Biblical history and prophecy which our scoffers willfully forget.
11). Ge 5:1 ? This is the book of the genealogy of Adam. In the day that God created man, He made him in the likeness of God. 2 He created them male and female, and blessed them and called them Mankind in the day they were created. 3 And Adam lived one hundred and thirty years, and begot a son in his own likeness, after his image, and named him Seth.
a). Now as we know the fifth chapter of Genesis begins with a genealogy covering ten generations from Adam through the lineage of Seth.
b). And within this genealogy only two persons are distinguished from the rest by an additional commentary, so let?s stir up our pure minds by way of reminder with regards to these two persons.
c). Ge 5:21 ? Enoch lived sixty-five years, and begot Methuselah.
22 After he begot Methuselah, Enoch walked with God three hundred years, and had sons and daughters.23 So all the days of Enoch were three hundred and sixty-five years. 24 And Enoch walked with God; and he was not, for God took him.
d). Enoch = Hebrew ? ?Chanowk?, khan-oke'= initiated - From - Hebrew ? ?chanak?, khaw-nak' = to narrow; figuratively, to initiate or discipline:--dedicate, train up.
e). Ge 5:28 ? Lamech lived one hundred and eighty-two years, and had a son. 29 And he called his name Noah, saying, "This one will comfort us concerning our work and the toil of our hands, because of the ground which the LORD has cursed."
f). Noah = Hebrew ? Noach = rest
12). Now we will remember that it is not an insignificant fact that Enoch was the seventh from Adam and Noah the tenth as 7 and 10 are numbers of completion; teaching us that after a complete period of time, one man, Enoch, whose name means ?to train up?, is removed from the earth alive and taken into heaven.
a). And then, after another complete period of time, one man and his family, Noah, whose name means ?rest?, who remain on the earth, are kept safely through a time of world wide destruction caused by a flood.
13). Now - Lu 17:26 "And as it was in the days of Noah, so it will be also in the days of the Son of Man:
a). As it was in the days of Noah, preceding the flood, where one man is taken alive into the heavens, so it will also be in the days of the Son of Man, preceding the great tribulation, where one man ? the one new man in Christ, will be taken alive into heaven. And a portion of the one new man will have willingly gone through a process that is depicted in the name of Enoch, who is the type for this very event - Heb 12:5 And you have forgotten the exhortation which speaks to you as to sons: "My son, do not despise the chastening [lit. child training] of the LORD, Nor be discouraged when you are rebuked by Him; 6 For whom the LORD loves He chastens, And scourges every son whom He receives." 7 If you endure chastening, God deals with you as with sons; for what son is there whom a father does not chasten?
b). As it was in the days of Noah where one man and his family were preserved safely through a time of world wide destruction by Divine protection, so it will also be in the days of the Son of Man, where a portion
of the old creation in Jacob and his family ? the nation of Israel - will be preserved safely through the Great Tribulation as a result of Divine protection in order for them to enter the Sabbath Rest ? Zec 13:8 And it shall come to pass in all the land," Says the LORD, "That two-thirds in it shall be cut off and die, But one -third shall be left in it:
c). Re 12:6 Then the woman fled into the wilderness, where she has a place prepared by God, that they should feed her there one thousand two hundred and sixty days.
d). Jer 32:37 'Behold, I will gather them out of all countries where I have driven them in My anger, in My fury, and in great wrath; I will bring them back to this place, and I will cause them to dwell safely..
e). It is after 6 generations, corresponding to the 6 days of work, that we see the foundational type for the Church, Enoch, being raptured - 24 And Enoch walked with God; and he was not, for God took him.
f). And it is after 600 years, corresponding to the 6000 years of Man?s Day, at the completion of 10 generations that we see the foundational type for Israel, Noah, passing through the Great Tribulation - Ge 7:6 Noah was six hundred years old when the floodwaters were on the earth.
g). And all of this of course corresponds exactly with the six days of work and the seventh day of rest presented in Genesis Chapters 1 and 2, the foundational framework on which all of scripture rests - The very thing we will remember that the scoffers willfully forget.
14). And we will remember from a few weeks back that it is the only recorded prophecy of Enoch, found in the Book of Jude, that prophecies concerning those who have willfully forgotten, the scoffers - Jude 1:14 Now Enoch, the seventh from Adam, prophesied about these men also, saying, "Behold, the Lord comes with ten thousands of His saints, 15 ? "to execute judgment on all, to convict all who are ungodly among them of all their ungodly deeds which they have committed in an ungodly way, and of all the harsh things which ungodly sinners have spoken against Him."
a). The ?ungodly? here in Jude are contextually the scoffers, eternally saved Christians who have adhered to a false message. And this is found not only in the cults but also within mainstream Christianity ? the very ones we find in the Book of Revelation who say - Re 3:17?'I am rich, have become wealthy, and have need of nothing'
15). Now we will remember that not only does scripture give us a genealogy through the Godly line of Seth, but also a genealogy through the Godless
line of Cain ? recorded in Genesis 4,and these two genealogies move in tandem together through six generations, but in the seventh things change.
a). And this change pointed us once again directly to the events that will take place at the conclusion of Man?s Day, after six days, after six thousand years
b). In the seventh generation through Seth, Enoch, as we have noted, walked with God; and he was not, for God took him. Pointing to the removal of the Church from the earth.
c). In the seventh generation through Cain however we find the record of the genealogy terminated which points to the present world system being brought to an end with the coming of the Millennial Kingdom of Christ.
16). Now we know that Enoch is the foundational type of the church being raptured before the beginning of the Great Tribulation and by comparing scripture with scripture ? here a little, there a little ? we can build on this type to form a complete picture.
a). We will remember that Joseph, having had his name changed in
Ge 41:45 And Pharaoh called Joseph's name Zaphnath-Paaneah. (savior of the world) And he gave him as a wife Asenath, the daughter of Poti-Pherah priest of On.
Was then married to a Gentile bride before the coming of the years of famine and his subsequent dealings with his brothers.
b). We will remember that Moses, having been rejected by his brethren in the flesh, marries a Gentile bride before being sent back to be Israel?s deliverer.
c). Isaac marries Rebekah before Abraham marries Keturah and becomes fruitful once more.
d). Lot escapes by the skin of his teeth, so to speak, before the destruction of the cities of the plain.
f). And Ruth?s intention to be Boaz?s wife is made known on his threshing floor before Boaz redeems the inheritance.
g). And in the Book of Revelation the Bride of Christ is revealed in Chapters 2 -3 before the scroll is opened in Chapter 6, which begins the events of Daniel?s 70th week culminating in the Great Tribulation.
h). Our scoffers have also willfully forgotten all of this.
17). Similarly, Noah and his family passing safely through a world wide flood, is the foundational type for Israel being delivered from the hands of Antichrist out of the Great Tribulation.
a). Just as Joseph?s brothers are delivered from the famine.
b). Just as Israel is delivered from the brickyards of Egypt
c). Just as Jonah, following repentance, is delivered from the sea.
d). Not only these, but we will remember - Ex 31:13 "Speak also to the children of Israel, saying: 'Surely My Sabbaths you shall keep, for it is a sign between Me and you throughout your generations, that you may know that I am the LORD who sanctifies you. 14 'You shall keep the Sabbath, therefore, for it is holy to you. Everyone who profanes it shall surely be put to death; for whoever does any work on it, that person shall be cut off from among his people. 15 'Work shall be done for six days, but the seventh is the Sabbath of rest, holy to the LORD. Whoever does any work on the Sabbath day, he shall surely be put to death. 16 'Therefore the children of Israel shall keep the Sabbath, to observe the Sabbath throughout their generations as a perpetual covenant. 17 'It is a sign between Me and the children of Israel forever; for in six days the LORD made the heavens and the earth, and on the seventh day He rested and was refreshed.'"
e). The Sabbath was a ?sign? established between God and the Children of Israel forever. It was a sign which drew from the day of rest in Genesis Chapter 2 and pointed forward to the Sabbath Rest yet future.
f). Every time Israel kept the Sabbath they were acknowledging God?s established pattern for restoring a ruined creation ? six days of work followed by a seventh day of rest ? the pattern established in Genesis Chapters 1- 2 and now applied to God?s present restoration work and future rest.
g). Any Israelite?s failure to keep the Sabbath was looked upon as a rejection of this truth, with dire consequences for the one who did so ? he would be ?cut off from among his people?.
h). And of course the present day equivalent of Israel failing to keep the Sabbath, and thereby rejecting that which God has said concerning the six days of work followed by the seventh day of rest, is those Christians who reject that which scripture has to say about the future rest, the 7th Day ? ?Where is the promise of His coming?? ? These would be our scoffers and those who adhere to the ?amillennialist? doctrine that they profess in all its various facets.
18). We may know with absolute certainty that the present six days of work will be concluded and that they will be followed by a seventh day of rest. A day when the promises made to Abraham, who was the tenth generation from Noah through the line of Shem, will be realized in their entirety ?
pictured for us in Noah and his family?s new beginning upon leaving the Ark.
a). And we may also be certain of an absolute ?new beginning?, signified by the eighth day, when there will be a new heaven and a new earth
b). Re 21:1 ? Now I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away. Also there was no more sea. 2 Then I, John, saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. 3 And I heard a loud voice from heaven saying, "Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them, and they shall be His people. God Himself will be with them and be their God. 4 "And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away." 5 Then He who sat on the throne said, "Behold, I make all things new." And He said to me, "Write, for these words are true and faithful."
19). Finally, with all of this in mind, the Holy Spirit through Peter asks the question recorded in - 2Pe 3:11 ? Therefore, since all these things will be dissolved, what manner of persons ought you to be in holy conduct and godliness,
a). And it is in contemplation of this question that we will close today and if the Lord is willing it will also be the place we will continue from next week.