Dec 10 – 2 Advent
2 Peter 3:8-15a
The Promise of the Lord’s Coming
Background: Peter’s second letter to the Christians in the first century of the Christian Era was most likely composed to address questions raised regarding the hierarchy or prominence between apostolic believers (first generation or first-hand believers) and postapostolic believers (those who had been evangelized by the apostles and those following).
Theme: This passage addresses questions about the delayed Parousia and the impact of what might be perceived as Jesus’ delay in returning. Sub-themes in this passage include: sanctification, justification, and questions of eschatology.
Questions to Ponder
* Please read 2 Peter 3:8-15a.
* Place this reading in context; where does it take place, who are the characters, what is the relationship between the characters, etc.?
* Define: sanctification, justification, and eschatology.
* To whom do scholars attribute authorship of this letter? When do scholars believe this text was composed?
* To whom do you think Peter was writing?
* Where else in the bible is the comparison of “a day” and “a thousand years” found?
* Why might Peter be making a distinction between slowness and patience? In your opinion, what is the difference between those two terms?
* What is the difference between holiness and godliness discussed in verse 11?
* What do you find odd about the comparison of waiting and hastening when applied to Christ’s return?
* Why might Peter refer to “new heavens and A new earth”? Why might he say multiple heavens but simply a singular earth?
* Why might Peter refer to the teachings of Paul?
* What does this passage say or imply about the importance of sanctification in a Christian’s life?
* What commentary does this passage give in response to a believer’s questions about the after-life: “Will it be worth it?” and “What do I do until then?”
* Do you think this passage predicts God’s final destruction of the world and our creation as being done by burning and fire?
* For whom does God wait before final judgment in this passage?
* In light of verses 14 and 15, how does this passage describe the time between Jesus’ first and second comings?
* How are Christians encouraged to wait for and search for God in this passage?
* How does a discussion of sanctification run counter to a focus on the eschatological teachings of modern churches?